Keeping a sense of proportion in politics

One of the best things about listening to Rush Limbaugh in the 1990’s was Rush’s unbridled optimism – he was a “Happy Warrior.” His unique brand of commentary – mixing serious analysis with irreverent humor – made conservatism fun at a time when people thought of conservatives as dour and grumpy. Rush’s passing has reminded me of the need to keep the word “Happy” in our political battles.

It is very easy to be embittered in politics, especially once you have been doing it for a long time. When you are getting a lot of unfair and false attacks, that temptation becomes more intense. So you have to keep reminding yourself to chill out and relax.

When Rush started, it was not easy to immerse yourself in politics. These days, with 24/7 cable news channels and endless sources of commentary on the Internet, you can do that. And while being informed is a good thing, we must be careful of the stream of negativity that enters our minds.

It is also important to treat political disagreement as disagreement, not as heresy or witchcraft. There are plenty of people I disagree with on things, but I understand they are generally good people. As I wrote last September, it is possible to be a good person and vote for Joe Biden. When you treat politics as a religion, you are doing politics wrong. It is a sure sign that you are taking it too seriously when you lash out at your friends because they disagree with you, especially when you question their integrity.

So go on a walk. Play a game or solve a puzzle. Cook a nice meal, do dishes and fold some laundry. Spend time with those who love you. If you need to unplug from politics for bit, then do that. For Christians, by far the most important thing to remember is that God is sovereign. Nothing can happen unless God allows it, and God can easily reverse terrible things in an instant. We must have faith that God is in control, and that not a hair can fall from our heads without Him knowing about it.