For the past several days I have tried to write a blog post, but as soon as I wrote something I would quickly cut it because it may have offended someone. Who it would offend, I don’t know, but it really didn’t matter. Offensiveness seems to be the new normal and I do not want to be “normal.”
I live in a small town just outside of Cape Girardeau, MO. Today the town is being visited by the 45th President, Donald J. Trump, Sean Hannity, and Cape Girardeau’s home boy Rush Limbaugh. There is an electricity in the air as a storm is brewing in the West, (seriously, the weatherman is calling for tornadoes this evening) the tension mounts on my social media pages, and I sit here wondering, whatever happened to civility? I scroll through my Facebook feed and see one accusatory comment after another. It does not matter which side a person is on, the accusations are coming from the Red and the Blue. How can we merge the two and make a lovely, vibrant purple?
When did this become an Us vs. Them country? To borrow from one of the greatest authors of all time, Harper Lee, “I think that there is just one kind of folks. Folks.” Scout Finch had a good role model in Atticus Finch and I think we could all use a reminder of Atticus’ advice today, “if you can learn a simple trick, Scout, you’ll get along a lot better with all kinds of folks. You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view-until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” People develop their beliefs based on their life experiences, not another persons background. We can learn from other people’s experiences, but it is one’s own life that develops their beliefs and foundations.
The one thing I have learned during this tumultuous time is, you are not going to change anything by being accusatory and mean to people who think differently. It only makes the divide deeper and wider. Saying that all Republicans/Conservatives are deplorable or all Democrats/Liberals are the Devil’s spawn is not going to heal this divide. It only causes more discord. If you must believe in an Us vs. Them scenario then think of it this way; the more divisiveness and discord ther is, the more ground “THEY” gain. Don’t ask me who “They” are, because I do not know. That one I will leave to the conspiracy theorist to decide. As for me today…. I’m going to go pass out daisies and breath mints, because if a person is going to yell at me, then they better have fresh breath while they are doing it.