There’s a lot of angry people in the world.
Here at home and across global ponds, on crucial issues, everyone wants change; half one way, half the other, half for economic reasons, half for moral reasons, half for preserving rights, half for conviction of wrongdoings. Remarkably, both sides publicly profess a desire for unity, but privately only when that unification embraces their own cause even if at the expense of another’s.
When I consider the world landscape and how this ideal of “unity in diversity” is supposed to work, the ideal seems to unravel a little more each day. The ways of the world are now far too complex for single issue advocates whose zeal unfortunately seems to do more to divide than unite. No one person or single issue can move this nation to the ideal all profess as their goal. And now we’re not only angry. we’re frustrated.
Idealists and true believers search for simplicities where available, for comforts where plausible and baby steps where attainable, yet within ever tighter communities that increasingly exclude views of neighbors just across the fence. Our solutions present more problems, political chasms widen and our hopes for unity narrow as we’re ensnared in traps laid by the media and the powerful whose livelihoods thrive on our continued conflict.
And so it’s now simpler to resign to posting half-truth memes which are poor conveyors of our convictions than to seriously attempt to embrace the complex truths of others. “Tell me how to think” has taken a front seat to thinking itself . Way too much pride is at risk for the chance of being wrong on some very valid points made by the other side. So we remain not only angry and frustrated, but polarized for all the wrong reasons, and nothing changes, Because if nothing within any of us changes, nothing will ever change.
I don’t have the answers, but I have to believe we still do if we want it bad enough, The pillars of our country were built on debates and compromises because in America—at least on paper—“We, the people”–not those we elected to govern– are where change lies, takes root and grows. “We” are still able to defeat the divisions that polarize rather than unite our nation of good neighbors.
So Happy Birthday America. May all of our candles burn bright and long with passion, and please, don’t set fire to our cake.