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You meet the most interesting people on CSPAN call-in shows.

I did a 45-minute turn on Monday’s Washington Journal. We had callers from California, West Virginia, Oklahoma and exotic locales like Cary, Chapel Hill and Monroe.

Now, I’m used to media interviews. The questions are usually about ads, polls, strategy and predictions.

Not here.

The first caller lectured me about abortion. A couple schooled me on religion: “Let me tell you something about the Bible.” One caller warned darkly, “There’s going to be a war in America” because he believes Hillary will try to do away with the Second Amendment.

There was a lot of fear and anger among the callers. That was especially true with the Trump supporters. But Democrats were angry, too, about Governor McCrory and the legislature.

I came away with some insight into the Trump voters. They see an America in decline. They’re fearful of crime, of immigrants and of economic change. They fear and despise Hillary Clinton.

By the end, I realized that I’m just not as pessimistic as they are about America. We’ve got plenty of problems. But we have plenty to be thankful for.

Like the right to call CSPAN and complain about the government. I wish people worried as much about the First Amendment as the Second.

After the show, a couple of people complimented me on not laughing at – or exploding at – some of the callers. I learned that from Jim Hunt. Always listen to people, even if you don’t agree with them.

It’s also in the Bible. “A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.” You could look it up.

 

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