Elections in America
I requested an absentee ballot for yesterday’s election, but it never came. I do try to stay informed and make good, educated decisions and vote each chance I get. I suppose this time it’s just as well I didn’t get the ballot as I really didn’t know the candidates or the issues like I would like. Of course, in American politics these days, I’m not sure if knowing the issues matters. What matters is picking a party and making sure they win…right?
One of the things that scares me about ever living in the US again is how polarized it appears the country has become politically. Instead of a civil discourse on issues, each party seems to dig their heels in as deeply as possible so they can defend their views and shred their opponents to pieces. There is no attempt to reach a common ground; no attempt to see what’s useful in the other’s thoughts; no attempt to have any sort of meaningful conversation. At least that’s how it looks from here.
Maybe I’m the only one who feels this way, but American politics makes me sick to my stomach. It seems like instead of trying to win people’s hearts and convince them with substantive discussion, politicians and pundits insult and belittle; caricaturize and stereotype. It’s all about winning…but at what price? What ever happened to being “one nation under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all”? What ever happened to agreeing to disagree? What ever happened to “I may not agree with what you say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it”?
I know, I know. I’m naïve to think such things. I’m sure people on both ends of the spectrum will have plenty of good reasons to defend their actions and attitudes. I’m sure there are plenty of reasons why I don’t know what I’m talking about. But, at least do me one favor when you tell me so, could you at least tell me in a nice way? I’d like to learn something and I do better at that when I’m not being put down or insulted. And who knows, I might have something useful to say too. Would you listen?