What Does “Being Political” Mean to Me?

America is in a very emotionally charged political environment right now. This piece isn’t meant to sway opinions from one party to the other. It’s a call for humanity, civility, compromise, common sense and understanding from everybody.

We’ve lost our way. I use the universal “we” because, as human beings, we all bleed red.

I’m going to say that again — WE. ALL. BLEED. RED. We all have the responsibility to engage and try to make things better.

We’re at a point right now, where we’re choosing not to find common ground with each other, at the exact moment it’s imperative we do so.

I know that may seem counter-intuitive in a broken two party political system; it’s very nature forcing us apart. But we’ve elected the officials currently in office, the officials who, it seems, are hell bent on not working together. Sadly, they’re taking their lead from us. Not the majority of us though. They take their lead from the loudest, who usually turn out to be the most extreme.

In affect, we’re supporting the asinine concept that our government can function properly at either extreme. That’s ridiculous. And it’s obviously not working. The only way we fix this country, bring it back from the precipice we teeter on, is by finding common ground. It’s by compromise.

All I see on the news lately is examples of extremism. It’s either fanatics on the right or fanatics on the left making headlines for some outrageously stupid thing they’ve done or said.

The middle has to speak up. The rational have to make their voices heard. Respect for the human being standing next to you, no matter what race, religion, sex, sexual orientation or socioeconomic status, should come first. There might be a thousand things that differ between you and your neighbor, but I guarantee you can ALWAYS find one thing that’s similar. Maybe it’s the love for a child, maybe it’s the desire for safety, maybe it’s as simple as mutual common courtesy. Whatever it is, that one thing needs to be the level ground we stand on, start from and build upon.

If we continue to vilify; to use only negativity, insults and hate, we’re going to destroy our country. It’s very easy to lay blame at someone else’s feet. It’s much harder to accept the blame that rests on our own shoulders. Even harder to admit the wrong and to take steps to fix it. We all need to take a hard look at what part we play in where this country stands right now. Because it’s on our shoulders to fix; one person at a time; then one community, one town, one city, one state; and finally one country.

This post is my way of starting; “one person at a time”. I might disagree with you politically, but I’ll do my absolute best to respect you. I only hope that you can do the same.

I realize writing this, at this particular time, could illicit some strong feedback. I’m okay with that, as long as we stay civil.

We need more compromise and less conflict.

So I’ll leave you with this:

Be passionate, not personal.
Be challenging, not childish.
Be intelligent, not ignorant.

“America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.” — Abraham Lincoln

If this post moved you, if you agree that this type of message should be out there, please like and share.

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