...and, start communicating like adults.
Over the last few years, I've become less and less vocal about my political leanings. Having a discussion about political opinion has become so difficult and seemingly pointless anyway. Seems everyone falls into one of 3 categories. They are either left, right, or really don't care either way and don't want to talk about it. If they're on the left or right, they can't be swayed away or even to the middle ground no matter what.
I don't know how it used to be, but I always thought it was about adults having adult conversations about how the community at large should be governed, serviced, and protected. I say I don't know how it used to be, because I really didn't bother paying attention at all until I watched fellow students have to leave the University because of cuts President Reagan had made. It didn't effect me at the time so I just kept moving along. It did wake me up to the fact that political decisions can effect who can afford to go to school or not. Or, whether friends would be sent away to die in a war.
Over time, and after way too many heated arguments that often ended in lost friends and even estranged family members… I pretty much avoided any conversations about politics. What's the point? You're not going to change anyone's mind… you don't really know for sure what's going on anyway because you can't trust ANY of the "news" organizations anymore. The end result is always either you're wasting time parroting same agreed upon views to each other, or you're getting in to a horrible fight that severs an otherwise great relationship.
That's why when I listened to a couple of podcasts by Alec Baldwin called "Here's the Thing", where he interviews a couple of conservative thinkers. I say thinkers because these cats are smart and can back up their beliefs instead of just repeating tired sound bites. I pretty sure Alec Baldwin is a fairly left-leaning liberal sort, so I figured it'd be a heated discussion.
It was so refreshing to listen to adults with opposing views, discuss their beliefs smartly like adults without spewing vitriol or canned sound bites. They seemed willing to listen to each other, and back up their viewpoints. This is the way I believe it's supposed to be. I don't think either swayed the other, but it didn't end in anger and likely caused at least some folks like myself, to consider some alternate viewpoints.
This severe division between everyone that we have now, serves no one. If we are ever going to evolve, progress, and move our species forward, we're going to have to begin with being able to discuss topics that effect us all without all the hatred.
Have a listen to the two podcast links below if you agree that division, hatred, and corporate sound bite politics has to end, and that the smart people who are capable of fixing the mess we're all in, need to be able to talk to each other like adults.