There is reason for anger in America, but it must be channeled into good

Published 8:33 am Monday, June 25, 2018

There’s a lot of anger in this country.
This week’s images showed uprising and demonstrations across this country over the immigration problem and the separation of immigrant children from their parents. Americans took to the street to show their frustration at the problem.
In Pittsburgh, Pa., demonstrators took to the street to express their anger over a young black American, who was shot and killed by police as he ran at a traffic stop.
Every week — almost every day — people are carrying signs and demonstrating in the streets over something. People think nothing of pulling out a gun and shooting at people, whether it be school children or at a crowded mall. Shooting seems to be the answer to their anger.
It seems that our elected representatives in Washington can’t agree on anything, thus nothing gets done.
This week at the Elizabethton Walmart, two women checking out were lashing out at each other in anger. An employee made the remark: “It’s scary. One of them could have a gun and begin shooting. You never know. It happens elsewhere. It can happen here.”
The easiest thing you’ll do all day is get ticked off at something.
Most of us will probably agree that when we are angry we do not make our best decisions. When angry, people tend to think in ways that are careless, ideologically defensive and overconfident. Anger prompts people to see politics through the lens of combat rather than cooperation.
To be sure, Americans have plenty to be angry about. The nation’s challenges are genuine, and its citizens’ frustrations are perfectly understandable. Many middle-class Americans are indisputably struggling to find gainful, rewarding employment, and to make ends meet. Immigration is a genuine challenge for the country as is affordable health care. There are so many issues that the average American is struggling with and should be angry about.
Thus far, no one has been able to mend the old racial fracture in America.
Nobody was punished for the devastation created by Wall Street and the financial crisis in 2008. Nobody foresaw the consequences of a type of growth that hurts the middle class in so many ways.
The anger just doesn’t stop in Washington. Locally, election campaigns draw bitter words. Elected officials haggle over policy, especially taxes. We are thankful that most do it in a thoughtful, considerate manner.
It doesn’t stop at politics. Even church congregations enter times when they disrupt into anger and emotions spill over, causing hurt feelings.
Is there an alternative, less-destructive emotion than anger?
The scriptures admonish: “Come, let us reason together.”
If only for a time we could put our anger behind, let go of our pride, and sit down together and do some give and take, we could find an answer to all our problems.
We pay a steep price for our anger., and if we’re not careful, we’ll continue to pay it again and again.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox