No. 268

The American poet & journalist William Cullen Bryant (1794-1878) once said, “The press is the servant of human intellect and it’s ministry is for good or evil, according to the character of those who direct it.” If you will think about that for a moment I believe you will agree that this quotation sums up the newspaper industry pretty well. In essence, the content, especially the editorial content, comes down to the character of those who direct it.
Over the past several weeks I’ve been thinking about something that may be of value to those of you who read this column. First, I consider it a real privilege to share these thoughts and ideas with you each week. If you are a regular reader you know that I try as best as I can to bring you positive stories, examples and concepts that will benefit and help you in some way. However, in the overall scheme of things I am just a very small fish in a very big pond.
As you know, in today’s times most of the news is bad or negative, but that’s the nature of news. It’s no longer news when something happens with such frequency that the paper couldn’t print all the stories if each issue contained a hundred pages. For what it’s worth, from my little corner of the world here in this publication, I want to renew a commitment that I made when I first began to write this column.
It has to do with that part of William Cullen Bryant’s quotation about “good & evil.” No doubt, you are fully aware that this is a battle that goes on day after day and regardless of the front, it’s one that is not hard to spot. We see the negative influences of evil all around us and what a sad story it really is, as human lives are littered in the backwash of Satan’s evil schemes.
The point I want to make loud and clear is simply this: while newspapers must print negative or evil things that happen to people, it is not the only thing they print. I want to do my best to help counter balance all the negatives in our society with good and positive information that will bring hope and encouragement to you who take the time to read what I share. This is not to say that I will not “tell it like it is”, but I will always have the best interests of my readers at heart.
When you hear the term, “THE POWER OF THE PRESS” it’s true. Newspapers bring us the news of what is happening in our communities and they have a great impact on our daily lives. However, this power can also be directed for the inspiration and betterment of those who are lonely, discouraged and those who lack purpose and direction in their lives.
As more and more papers across the nation are running this column and I am hearing from more and more readers, I realize that if each of us do our ‘best’ in our families, our careers and jobs, our churches, civic clubs and our communities, we can become a powerful force for good. In the coming weeks and months I will be bringing you a wide variety of topics and each one will have the underlying theme for “good” and my very best wishes for your success and happiness.
From time to time we all need to stop and count our blessings and realize that we still live in the greatest nation on earth. We can all make a difference if we will take a few minutes each day to help others. Just remember that “If you give a person a fish you feed him for a day, but if you teach him how to fish, you feed him for life.” The “POWER OF THE PRESS” can be used for good so do something special for someone today. (Jim Davidson is a motivational speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, AR 72034.)