Americans Can Fight the Negative News Cycle, Even Well Before 2020
Programs from the Southern Evangelical Seminary teach people to properly assess today's thorniest issues
The steady stream of angry political headlines and negative news — even in the middle of July 2019 — is leaving many Americans fed up and tired (even those who are on vacation right now).
Richard Land, president of the Southern Evangelical Seminary (SES), recently explored the notion in an episode of his daily radio feature, “Bringing Every Thought Captive,” which is heard on nearly 800 stations across the country.
“Mental health professionals are talking a lot about a new disorder that has been showing up in their practices,” Land said. “It’s called Headline Stress Disorder, or HSD, and it’s defined as ‘an increase in general anxiety, worry, intolerance and lowered frustration activation.’”
“The 24/7 news cycle [that is] constantly bombarding our senses with negative news seems to be the chief culprit,” Land added. “A 2017 study by the American Psychological Association found that a whopping two-thirds of Americans report they’re stressed out over the future of the country, and constant news consumption was tapped as a likely trigger.”
Land suggested, however, that conservative Christian voters need to keep front and center such important issues as the right to life for the unborn, religious freedom, pro-America immigration policies, a strong economy, and our country’s key relationship with Israel.
Students at SES partake in classroom discussions about such news and commentary through the organization’s Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) program, as material provided to LifeZette this week made clear. Offered mostly at a few top universities around the world, the program introduces students to a Christian perspective on how philosophy, politics and economics intersect today.
Conservative Christian voters need to keep front and center such important issues as the right to life for the unborn, religious freedom, pro-America immigration policies, a strong economy, and our country’s key relationship with Israel.
The results of a Pew Research Center survey from last year found that nearly seven out of 10 respondents felt “worn out” by all of the news that’s constantly coming their way, Land also noted.
Yet “even though we’re exhausted from the news, we can’t seem to stay away,” he pointed out. “We constantly check news and social media feeds, exposing ourselves to the latest news headlines. And teenagers are increasingly waking up in the middle of the night to check their phones.”
“What’s the answer?” he asked. “Unplug yourselves and follow the admonition of the Apostle Paul to the Philippians: ‘Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things’ (Philippians 4:8).”
Nearly every issue worthy of discussion and debate in today’s society harkens back to what SES teaches its students through PPE, the organization explained.
“Encouraging and training more Christians about these issues is exactly why the program exists,” the group noted.
The seminary recently announced the 26th annual National Conference on Christian Apologetics (NCCA), which will take place on October 11 and 12 at Calvary Church in Charlotte, North Carolina. For the 2019 event, SES is focusing on the theme, “Why Truth Still Matters.”
It will welcome some of the nation’s top apologetics speakers. For more information, visit the group’s website.