I tried not to watch, but analysis of Super Tuesday Election results kept pulling at me the way bright lights lure bugs. And I couldn’t help but follow dozens of debates on the web about the merits of the men who would be president.
It’s easy to watch and listen and wonder if there is any unity left in the United States of America. But then I thought of John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, two Founding Fathers. Brilliant men who were alternately friends and foes. They spent their last years as close friends separated only by the distance between their homes in Massachusetts and Virginia, respectively.
If only 21st century Americans and their leaders could learn to respect those with whom they disagree and to learn from their differences. We’d all be the better for it, but I don’t think it will ever happen. We’ve simply become too polarized.
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Quote of the day: I hear, I know. I see, I remember. I do, I understand. — Confucius, Chinese philosopher (551-479 B.C.)
5 thoughts on “Quick Hit: Putting unity back in the United States”
To me, I think we have lost the art of disagreeing with one another. It seems we cannot share a drink or a meal or each other’s company unless we are in total agreement. How boring, and unfortunate.
Couldn’t agree more. What’s the world come to when people who disagree can’t sit down, eat and drink too much and have a good debate? I’ve told many readers through the years the world would be pretty boring if we all agreed all of the time. But on the other hand, we’re in a lot of trouble if we can never agree on anything.
You cannot achieve agreement between intolerant people, and tolerance has gone out of fashion. The national discussion is no longer about values, goals and methods. It is now cast in terms of motives, intents, reputations, alliances, entitlements and win/lose. We won’t move beyond this until people recognize what’s happening, begin to reward compromise and punish “tribalism”. Otherwise, we can expect Left/RIght tribal war to continue until one side accepts defeat.
I agree totally.
As far as I can see, the Left/Right framing has never worked well—not for anything constructive, that is.