last week, the news & what’s lesser

No doubt multiple current challenges exist in this crazy cultural moment. There is a level of uncertainty that has crept into all sorts of societal nooks and crannies. And it’s rattling us. 

How do we know?

We are missing the big picture. We are justifying what is not good and true and right. And we are being lured into what’s lesser.

Allow me a few, brief examples…

We are being lured into what’s lesser if in conversation we lead with “I’m just going to say” and tolerate no response nor dialogue after that. That says more about “me” and my inability to consider thoughtful dissent than it says about anyone else’s ignorance or obstinacy. Our need to state our stance coupled by an unwillingness to earnestly examine another is evident of a lack of wisdom.

We are being lured into what’s lesser if we can no longer affirm an act of kindness or compassion. Like many, I tuned into the Senate Judicial Committee hearings this past week (as I do with each Supreme Court nominee — also grateful for C-SPAN). When progressive Sen. Diane Feinstein and conservative Sen. Lindsey Graham hugged at the hearings’ conclusion, I admit: I loved it. I love that the two seemed to recognize our shared humanity means more than political entrenchment. Hence, when the calls quickly came for Feinstein to resign because of her “betrayal” in expressing affirmation to the committee chairman, it was a sobering moment. I understand our passions; I also have long been an advocate for congressional term limits, seeing no need for the Grassley’s and Leahy’s to be in office so long. But when we are irked by an empathetic embrace, my sense is the problem isn’t with the people we are watching.

We are being lured into what’s lesser when we think only one side is hypocritical. One of the aspects that appeared clear to even casual observers last week is that these partisan sides are actively engaged in pointing fingers at other people only, acting as if the shoe was on the other foot, they would respond differently… they wouldn’t alter the rules… they wouldn’t ram things through… they would reach across the aisle and answer all the questions. That’s a little too much focus on “they” for this semi-humble current events observer. It also seems to be an incomplete read of our nation’s recent history.

My sense is being lured into the lesser rattles us.

And so two weeks before the national election (and more concerned about what happens after it — how people will treat each other, no matter the result), allow me to make my continued plea for an objective intake of news. The biased media is part of the lesser lure.

Let me encourage we consider what we wholly tune into — recognizing that there is a difference between news, analysis and opinion. is an insightful resource, as their stated goal is to “expose people to information and ideas from all sides of the political spectrum so they can better understand the world — and each other.” Here is their latest, updated media chart, which the Intramuralist believes to be especially vital now:

What we tune into matters, friends. It matters in how much we’re rattled.

As a person of faith, one of my goals is not to be rattled. It’s instead to stay grounded, hold onto the big picture, and to never be lured by what’s lesser.