We can fret and complain, or we can …

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There’s so much wrong in the world, sometimes we just need to take a deep breath, exhale, and focus on matters we can influence, if not control.

Are you going to change people’s mind about abortion or gun control? Convince critics of President Trump that they’re off base? Convince his supporters that their allegiance is misplaced?

What about Black Lives Matter? Kneeling during the national anthem? Same-sex marriage? Any religion you don’t believe in? Any team you don’t root for?

Exercises in futility, most likely. And other than admiring your swollen argumentative muscles, what have you really accomplished?

Tuesday morning, a room full of citizens accomplished a lot. They took a step toward making the world a slightly better place (maybe a much better place; time will tell). Like so many other similar groups in our community, these people gathered to support an organization that is working hard to instill a sense of ethics, of responsibility, of sanity, of duty to neighbors and strangers alike.

The Boy Scouts of America Inland Northwest Council hosted its annual Leadership Breakfast at the Coeur d’Alene Inn. Among others, dignitaries including Coeur d’Alene Mayor Steve Widmyer, Post Falls Mayor Ron Jacobson, Hayden Mayor Steve Griffitts, Idaho Fish and Game Commissioner Brad Corkill, former state Sen. John Goedde, current County Commissioner Chris Fillios and former County Commissioner Dan Green, Cd’A Police Chief Lee White and Cd’A Fire Chief Kenny Gabriel were there, community leaders and role models one and all. Two tables were packed with Coeur d’Alene first responders from the fire and police departments. Business leaders and Scouting enthusiasts, and even a few Scouts themselves, devoted time and money to ensure this great organization remains viable in our region.

If you feel frustrated whenever someone horribly broken does something unspeakable to innocent people, think about what small steps you might take locally with agencies and nonprofits like the Boy Scouts to make your community stronger, safer, healthier. Solutions are all around us. Actually doing something is harder than arguing about school shootings and presidential spitting matches, but the effort pays off in a multitude of ways — not the least of which is bringing people together, rather than ripping them apart.

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