Column: Kindness and generosity provide antidote to poisonous presidential behavior

I need an antidote.

My system has been poisoned by what I see, hear and read of the actions of our president, from his praise of white supremacists, to his attempts to deny health care to millions of Americans to his attack on the very air we breathe.

As a lifelong journalist, I always eagerly picked up the paper and turned on the news every day to learn what was happening.

Now, though, I approach the paper with trepidation. And instead of turning on the news I often find myself opting for “Modern Family’’ re-runs.

So, I need an antidote.

I need to know there still is kindness and generosity. And I have found some of both.

That, according to the anti-hunger group Feeding America, 29.1 million Americans live in food-insecure households is more poison in our system.

But the growing response of individual Americans isn’t.

Little Free Pantries are springing up all over the country. The first appeared in May of last year in Fayetteville, Ark. The pantries are a variation of the Little Free Library idea in which individuals fill a free-standing box usually in the front yard with books. Passersby are invited to take what they would like to read and perhaps leave a book of their own.

Little Free Pantries do the same, except with food and personal-use items.

Nobody owns Little Free Pantry. It is a nonprofit effort of kind and generous individuals. There are more than 1,000 Little Free Pantries scattered across the United States. And there are pantries in Canada and New Zealand.

Little Free Pantry has a website at which pantry creators share information and their experiences. The website even has sample plans for making the pantry containers, called Blessing Boxes.

You can see more for yourself at

The website discusses the best items with which to fill the Blessing Boxes (nothing sharp, nothing perishable). And since food is involved, would-be pantry makers are urged to…

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