wring (one's) hands

(redirected from wrung their hands)

wring (one's) hands

To display one's worries about something but not act to address it. We must not just wring our hands about this famine. We must act to help those who are starving.
See also: hand, wring

wring your hands

show great distress.
See also: hand, wring

ˌwring your ˈhands

twist and rub your hands together because you are very worried, upset or anxious: He stood there, wringing his hands in despair.It’s no use just wringing our hands — we must do something. ▶ ˈhand-wringing noun: No amount of hand-wringing can change the situation.
See also: hand, wring
References in periodicals archive ?
So a few MPs have faffed around and wrung their hands, but the only way to stop another Farepak is by ensuring people's hard-earned cash is fully and legally protected.
Others rushed to condemn or censor publication of the cartoons, while several media representatives wrung their hands and called for more "responsible" use of the power of the press.
THE mayor, the superintendent of schools, various politicians and much of the citizenry have wrung their hands these last few months over how to reduce the LAUSD's shameful dropout rate.
Importers wrung their hands as their goods stacked up offshore during a 10-day lockout in early October, draining $6 billion from the overall economy, according to the Kyser's organization.
The same hypocrites who closed Mission Canyon and other landfills wrung their hands in agony Tuesday over how diesel garbage trucks poison the air they and their constituents breathe.
Woods' score was one shot better than the record set by Jack Nicklaus in 1965, when Augusta officials probably wrung their hands in worry but they pretty much left the course alone for years.