Be the Solution. Please?

Surely you’ll succumb to Puppy Dog Eyes?

So, things are contentious around here. The right figures the left (including me) are out to steal their guns, insert tracking chips in their brains, and destroy the country. Meanwhile, from the left are those who figure that the right-wing is out to suppress all minorities, squash all opposing speech, and install a fascist dictator forthwith, thus, of course, destroying the country.

Well, they can’t both be right. Which means (can you hear them) that each side is shouting that they are the side that’s right about the other side. Oy Vey, I say.

Yes, racially motivated violence has increased. Due to an unfortunate series of events, those who are prone to such execrable behavior feel more able to express their urges. And, yes, one of the two major parties seems determined to gerrymander its way into taking over the government. Not good. (We should check out preferred choice voting, but that’s for another time.) And, sure, I lean left, but there are some absolute idiots on the left. Not the people the right thinks are idiots, but those who think it would be a good thing simply to split the country and, so to speak, go home. As I said, idiots. And some on the right would be happy to get together with them to make that happen. More idiots. Still . . .

Since idiocy is well distributed, there’s no cause to hurl invective. You can’t persuade someone to pay attention to your position by insulting them. It’s fun for a minute, then very much counter-productive. What to do? Listen to your “enemies.” All anybody wants out of a political system is to think that their position has been seriously considered. Really, that’s just about it. It doesn’t have to be adopted, but definitely must have been seriously considered. Are the urban, left-wing progressives letting the more rural conservatives think they’ve been heard? Are those conservatives considering that the urban folk have needs as well? I won’t answer, just think about it.

The honest truth is that every few generations we get into a mess like this. A couple of messes ago it got so bad that some Southern states pretty much lost a generation of young men. Not pretty. But, as in every cycle, so far, every time, things end up shifting a bit to the leftward. That is happening now, and I completely understand how those not familiar with the problems confronting urban dwellers feel threatened by the way things are going. (I’m not putting forth an opinion on that here, just stating that it is happening.) At the same time, the urban population, being majority-minority, feels threatened by what seems to be a vendetta against their very existence. Again, that’s easy to understand.

So, respect is what we need. Respect for each other, even those we have huge disagreements with, as human beings with human needs. (Yes, I hear both sides screaming that “those guys” don’t do that.) They’re right. So, instead of continuing to make things tense and awful, how about we all just afford each other, Bernie lovers and MAGA hat wearers alike, the dignity and respect due to any human being. Seriously.

I mean, considering everything, what’s to lose by trying?

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