primetime aired this program the other day about how mean teenagers can be – their meanness often amplified by use of the internet. i was definitely interested in watching – i’m a youth pastor, after all. beyond that, as well, my daughter has started attending preschool a couple of days a week and i know part of the socialization process involves learning how to deal with difficult kids. a couple of days ago, our family went to the park and another little girl tried to push my daughter off one of the rides – right in front of her mom, who did nothing to stop her. yikes.

anyhoo, my wife and i decided, despite our interest, not to watch the program. we realized that it probably would only serve to get me angry – without anything particularly constructive coming out of it.

it’s sort of like some of the blogs i read. perhaps you’ve read them. one in particular features a blustery christian leader ranting about whatever wimpy people or issues happen to get his goat. i’ve heard from many people that this person has some great insights – but i can’t get past the bluster. most of the time i find myself wondering why he cares so much about some of these issues, when many of them clearly fall outside of his sphere. i’m sure he would say something about how jesus reserved his harshest criticism for religious leaders and how he is the upholder of the banner of truth, or something like that. but all of his macho posturing sounds a lot like those suburban gangs who feel like they have something to prove, so they go over the top in their aggression and violence.

i must admit, sometimes i like to get angry. there’s something strangely satisfying about stomping around in a self-righteous rage – especially when i can make someone else the enemy, the fall guy for all my own insecurities and shortcomings. but this is not who i want to be.

i think i’ll avoid some of these blogs for awhile. i won’t call it a fast, though. it’s more like common sense, trying to avoid something that is sure to put me in a foul mood for the rest of the day.