My First, and Probably My Last

Saturday, March 27, 2010 0 Comments A+ a-

I can already tell you what's going to happen if I leave this blog post open to comments.

Those who lean a little, or a lot, or completely to the left, will call the other side hate-mongering, fearful, or against progress. Those who lean a little, or a lot, or completely to the right, will call the other side social communists, fiscally irresponsible, and/or trampling on our country's rights. I'm going to save everyone's breath and wasted time, and already put those accusations out there. Ok? Done. Moving on.

This post has nothing to do with the pros or cons of a health care bill, the most recent presidential election, or yours or mine political views. Instead, it has everything to do with the lack of respect that should be afforded to one another, regardless of political affiliation, but is nowhere to be found. And how annoyed I am on the total polarizing stances taken on issues where instead of issuing insults, generalizations, and grouping others into stereotypes, maybe, just maybe, we can come to a couple of agreements.

  1. Why don't we give every person the benefit of the doubt that we all truly want what's best for this country and our countrymen?

    We may never agree on what that is or how to best get that accomplished, but perhaps we can instead try to remember that it is highly unlikely the person with the opposite stance is wishing and/or hoping for the fall or failure of this country.

  2. Can we please do away with any generalization of any kind?

    I already named a few above but I want to go deeper. Instead of assuming that another person is only capable of regurgitating talking points of their party's lines, why don't we instead assume that perhaps that person has valid reasons of their own to believe what they do. You may not agree with them, but I believe it’s dangerous to assume that just because someone doesn't agree with your point of view does not mean they have come to that opinion without educating themselves on the issue first.

  3. In that same vein, do you think it at all possible that we can stop with the all or nothing attitude?

    I highly doubt either party is incredibly proud of every decision or stance taken by those elected to represent us. I believe that each party has the capability of pointing to members of the other party as examples of what is wrong with their ideology. And along that line, can we also agree that if a person believes or agrees with a party's stance on a particular issue, it does not necessarily mean that suddenly they're in agreement with every stance that party holds.

  4. And lastly, can we all agree that it is incredibly presumptuous for any of us to say that if Jesus Christ walked among us, that He would automatically choose one side over the other?

    Don't get me wrong here, I firmly believe that He very much would take stances on morality issues. But outside of the absolutes from the Bible, how Jesus would vote on any other issue is really anyone’s guess. I believe that He'd be much more interested in how we're treating each other in light of our differences. And truth be told, there is no one on this earth to hold judgment over another person based on their voting record. There is one judge that I'm aware of, and you are not it.

I am tired. I am disgusted. And I am guilty of everything I just vented about.

I think when it comes to politics, we all feel so passionately about our beliefs that it becomes personal. We lash out, we think our stance is right, and we say things that are better left unsaid. Human nature is ugly, and it seems politics brings out the very worst in all of us.

Its time for a reality check. These are our fellow men, for better or for worse. We share a country, we share a government, and we share the same desire of working to better a very broken country. We don't have to agree, and I firmly believe that all the yelling, discussing, and debating will do very little to change political bents.

And if we ever want those whom we've elected to office to actually start working together, then perhaps we need to step back and look at ourselves. After all, we elected them to represent us. And that's precisely what they're doing. They're representing every name calling, line-drawing, brick throwing, tantrum having, and pious attitude yielding that each and every one of us is guilty of. Perhaps if we can start modeling how to treat those we disagree with, our representatives will start taking notice and do the same.

I'm going to end with this.

We all have a responsibility here. A responsibility to know why we believe what we do; do the research and weigh the pros and cons before taking a stance on any candidate or issue. We have the responsibility (and privilege) of having a voice in this system. Be sure to vote, and know why you're voting the way you are.

But most importantly, we each have a responsibility in how we treat each other. Remember that each opinion, regardless of whether or not it agrees with yours, does matter. And if you disagree, it may be wise to remember the age-old saying, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all."

(And yes, comments are closed for the simple reason that I have no desire for a political debate. It’s my blog and I needed a moment to vent.)

I’m a coffee drinking, book reading, laundry procrastinating, husband and children loving, mess of a woman who believes that chips and salsa can fix anything. We have chickens running around the backyard, a mountain of dishes in the sink, and on any given morning, I have at least 10 school forms that need my signature or initials. It’s a crazy life {I prefer to call it controlled chaos}, but its ours.