In a news environment in which the American public is constantly bombarded with stories about the president’s latest Twitterstorm, the left’s newest grievances, and the coming climate change apocalypse, it is good to acknowledge reports showcasing the better part of human nature. Instead of the constant vitriol and alarmism, it makes sense the people would yearn for a story with a positive message that transcends political divisions.
Fortunately, filmmaker Tyler Perry and other prominent individuals have sparked a heartwarming movement that has already blessed the lives of thousands of Americans. This story is a much-needed reminder that American society is stronger than its political divisions. Hopefully, we can see more of these tales to balance out the negativity to which we are exposed daily.
Tyler Perry’s Layaway Payoff
Last week, Tyler Perry made the news when he went to two Walmart stores in the Atlanta area and paid off $434,000 worth of layaway items. LeMia Jenkins, a Walmart spokesperson, told People Magazine that the creator of the “Madea” films helped 1,500 customers who were paying off holiday gifts in installments.
“If you have a layaway at either place and it was there as of 9:30 this morning, then I have paid for all of your layaways for Christmas,” Perry exclaimed in an Instagram video. “I’m just really really grateful to be able to be in a situation to do this. So God bless you. Go get your stuff.”
The next day, musician Kid Rock followed Perry’s lead. After paying off layaways at Walmart, the singer tweeted: “@tylerperry Great idea! I followed your lead and paid off the layaway at my local Walmart in Nashville. Merry Christmas and God Bless You!”
Kid Rock paid off about $81,000, which constituted the entirety of the layaway balances at the store. Tom Meyer, the manager, told The Tennessean “Kudos to Kid Rock for making such a gesture in our community. I think that’s a pretty Nashville proud moment.”
Then conservative commentator and author Glenn Beck joined in. Inspired by Perry, he went into a Texas Walmart and paid off $27,000 worth of layaway balances. “We were really inspired by [actor] Tyler Perry and what he did at the Walmart in Atlanta,” Beck said in a video. “So we’re going to buy everything in layaway as well for everybody who has put anything in layaway.”
Beck also called on other prominent conservatives, namely Bill O’ Reilly, Steven Crowder, Ben Shapiro, and Mark Levin, to do the same.
Can We Have More of This?
When we consume the news, we are inundated with reports on all of the horrible things that are going on in the U.S. and around the world. Given the fact that many people read or watch the news on a daily basis, it’s no wonder that so many of us believe that the nation is headed toward civil war. But stories such as this demonstrate that there are examples of love and generosity in American society.
The problem is that the news media rarely covers positive stories that put the goodness of the American people on display. This is not exclusive to left-leaning outlets; the conservative press is also part of this issue.
Some of this can be attributed to the old adage: “If it bleeds, it leads.” But this saying does not fully explain the problem; human nature is also a culprit. We find it easy to fixate on the negative aspects of our lives rather than focusing on that for which we should be grateful.
Perhaps if the American public demands more of a balance between negative and positive stories, it could have a better impact on society as a whole. If our Fourth Estate will publish more encouraging articles, it might help to lessen the tension that has crept into our national dialogue.