Let’s find the positive this holiday season
Phew, that was a close call.
I survived Thanksgiving, and since you’re reading this, congratulations, you did, too.
Given the caloric haul of the typical Thanksgiving dinner, around 4,500, it’s practically Russian roulette to tuck into a turkey.
Living another day is no easy feat these days. Take a look at a random sample of recent headlines:
“Bad day for bacon: Processed meats cause cancer,” “Noise may be bad for the heart,” “Blue eyes linked to higher risk of alcohol dependence,” and “Rude behavior spreads like a disease.” It’s enough to drive you to drink no matter what color your eyes.
Throw in E. coli outbreaks at Chipotle and Costco, ISIS mass murder, Donald Trump and the Lakers, and it’s a miracle we’re able to get out of bed in the morning.
Knowledge is power, but is any of this fear-mongering actually knowledge or simply knowledge-style knowledge? News-Whiz. Not really news but a newslike substance.
The constant prophecies of doom remind me of the psychic who predicts the world will end next week. Say anything long enough and eventually you’ll be right.
Everything is killing us yet we’ve never lived longer. Granted, we’ve never been fatter, never had as much cancer and autism, and never seen a slate of candidates so utterly devoid of the character and qualifications to unite a great nation. Still, are things really as bad as we’re being told?
Shuffling among us are the last survivors of the Greatest Generation. Our parents or grandparents grew up in a world of dirt roads, oil lamps, horses and carriages, the Great Depression, Jim Crow, the Dust Bowl, Hitler, Tojo and Stalin. Somehow they survived. Listen to five minutes of news today and you’d think the sun rising in the East is a conspiracy to spread skin cancer.
Everything either could or will kill us. Personally I’m tapped out on fear. I simply don’t have any room left in my scaredy-cat tank.
For the last 14 years we’ve been told to fear terrorists, which is like worrying about an asteroid landing on your head. It’s not that terrorists aren’t a threat, but what am I supposed to do about ISIS? I worry about more prosaic things like staying employed, my parents’ health and whether the outdoor cat will come home at night.
Global warming? Sorry. President Hillary? Sorry.
There’s not much I can do about climate change or who lives in the White House. I recycle. I vote. Other than that, what power do I have? One of the few benefits of blowing out lots of candles on your birthday cake is you become less susceptible to manufactured fear.
We’ve somehow convinced ourselves that everything we eat, drink, drive or sleep with is a virtual death sentence either for ourselves or the planet. Everything pollutes, everything offends, everything is racist, nothing is funny, and everyone is oppressed except a tiny handful of evil white men who hate everyone, including their own mothers because their mothers are women.
Which isn’t to say there aren’t evil white men, as there are evil men of all races. But it’s important to remember there are many times more good men than bad. There are remarkable people doing remarkable things and billions of ordinary folks with kindness in their hearts who will leave this world better off than it was before they got here.
A rare burst of McIntyre optimism!
Of course, last week this headline showed up in my in-box, “Optimistic people all have one thing in common: They’re always late.”
There’s always a catch.
Doug McIntyre’s column appears Sundays. Hear him weekdays 5-10 on AM 790. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org.