Praying for Kindness

The year was tiring, unpredictable and simply politically crazy

By Mike Jopek

It’s Christmastime. It’s the season of giving. Spend some time with family and friends. It’s the time to be kind, to remember why we live in the Flathead. We cherish our mutual bonds of life, liberty and freedom.

All over America people have been feeling the exhaustion that current-day politics have ushered forth. It’s just nutty out there, folks. The year was tiring, unpredictable and simply politically crazy.

Thank you, Alabama. You remind us of hope — hope that the reddest state in the country can see through the fog of partisanship. Alabama is the beginning of the wave of reason, and everyone knows it. Loony-time politics must end.

America is full of goodness, and it’s time for the graciousness of people to shine. Locally there is much generosity. Clearly some people have it very good while many simply get by.

But ordinary and everyday Montanans are doing their part by volunteering and giving to people in need. Everyday people make cash and food donations to the local food pantries in the valley.   

And with good reason, since it’s not like the current Congress is doing much to help the less fortunate. Congress is fixated on taking away federal food assistance and children’s health insurance, dismantling Medicaid and defunding Medicare.

Their one accomplishment this entire year will be to place the nation $1.4 trillion farther in debt by doling out massive tax breaks to the biggest corporations on the planet.   

But, it’s Christmastime. Locals give to do-gooders and donate to organizations that do right by humanity. Please take time to look around the valley and see the generosity. It’s plainly visible in our communities.

The food bank in Whitefish is distributing big boxes of food this Christmas. They include ham and the fixings. Food pantries do a bang-up job with limited resources. They could use that extra Lincoln in your pocket to make life better for fellow citizens in hunger.

Everyone knows giving is the right thing to do. Politics wrongly reinforces that people in poverty must pick themselves us by their bootstraps and make do. That’s just impossible, as some can’t even afford boots.

Please be as kind as you can afford, and do your part to share your personal wealth with hungry kids throughout the valley.

I’m not foolish enough or even naive enough to believe that Congress will have a change of heart to drop their nonsense and get back into the business of governing.

Alabama may have started a wave of change, but it will take enormous amounts of hard work by ordinary people across the state and nation to assure that goodness prevails in the New Year.

We want kind politicians. We deserve kind governing. Yet the perpetual campaigns push a very different message. They want us to remain divided, to remain partisan.

One of my many Republican friends recently told me that he never imagined enjoying working together on projects so much. He was astonished at how much we agreed on stuff.

I didn’t want to ask him if I was more Republican than I thought or if he was more Democrat than he thought. It doesn’t matter.

His words were the truest of truths, that we are all more alike than not. And even typing these words brings tears to my old eyes. The fighting in modern politics often makes me forget that my fellow humans matter more than political party.

Family and friends routinely push your buttons. Get over it and love them regardless.

My fellow Montanans: Be kind to one another. Give freely to organizations like food pantries and do right by your neighbors. Merry Christmas, my friends. I hope to see you in the New Year.

Stay Connected with the Daily Roundup.

Sign up for our newsletter and get the best of the Beacon delivered every day to your inbox.