Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Open Letter

Seeing as I am my own editor, I suppose this would be an op-ed piece?

Whatever. I just wanted to say how tired I am of the rush to either extreme. If it's not conservatives crying over how Romney or Perry aren't conservative enough, it's the progressives whining about Obama not being liberal enough. The idea that the place to strive for is on one of the ends of one side of one parties most extreme side is simply insane. In the first place, such a mentality ensures failure, as, by definition, the extreme edges of any party are going to be in the minority, and in the second place, it ignores the fact that the other side of the spectrum are American citizens as well and deserve to have their views represented. The constant roller-coastering of our political environment are destroying us. All this does is create a dynamic where one side strives fiercely to enforce their will on the other side, only to have an equally fierce backlash where we're now wasting time and money just undoing what the other side has done.

I am by no means a Centrist. I'm about as Liberal as they come, but even I can recognize that I should never get everything I want in almost any situation, but especially in the political sense. Yeah, it seems like getting what we want would create a Utopia, and it might - but only for my side or for my beliefs. I can't and shouldn't ignore the fact that there are people who disagree with me. No, they shouldn't get exactly what they want either. The process is supposed to winnow out the crazy extremes and bring us to compromise and "center". The idea that "I'm right and they're wrong" is arrogant and self-centered.

It seems strange and stupid to have to say this, but it seems it needs to besaid on an hourly basis, but this country was built on the idea that everyone is included. E Pluribus Unim - From Many, One. We are suppsed to be united in the idea that we are united. That doesn't mean we have to agree, but it does mean that we have to work together for the good of all of us, not just the side we think are "real Americans". In my opinion, anyone who uses the phrase "Real Americans" is exactly NOT that. People like that are the ones who'd rather see their opponents in prison or exile and their ideas villified and erased. In other words, the same mentailities that we hold up as horrible when other nations like North Korea or Soviet Russia hold them.

Just like in any business or personal negotiations, neither side should leave completely satisfied. Both sides should feel like they gave up something, because we should be giving up something - our egos and our arrogance that we are the ones who hold all the answers. I'm guilty of it at times. I freely admit that, but that doesn't mean that I don't recognize that, even though I'm Liberal and will likely vote Democrat, there are just as many Republicans out there that are my friends, neghbors and family members. Are we really so stupid that we want to crush one side in favor of ours and can't see the dangers inherent in that?

"Absolute power corrupts absolutely."

It's a misquote of a famous saying, but it still applies. The problem is that people seem to think it only applies to people. It also applies to government and political parties and business leaders and businesses. There is a lot wrong with our system, but this push to the fringes isn't fixing anything, it's merely destroying what's already broken.

1 comment:

Colleen Chapman said...

Well said Guy! I especially agree with your assessment of the "unAmerican" bit. Reminds of once upon a time when half the country wore Grey and the other Blue...