May we unite rather than divide

Our world has fallen victim to a lexicon for political views. Snowflake is thrown around such that it is now defined as an overly sensitive person, incapable of dealing with any opinions that differ from their own. More egregious uses are meant to hurt feelings by suggesting that a flake has no spine and needs to be kept in the dark cold to survive. If light shines upon them, they melt, turn to water, and drift away.

While I can’t find a new meaning defined in a dictionary, deplorable holds similar hope in demeaning those who believe in a Supreme Being, are patriotic to America, and don’t want the long arm of government to control their lives. Hillary added to laughter racists, sexist, homophobic, etc. She felt this basket of people she called out were women and men who supported her opponent.

Social media starts with a tweet or a post stating a writer’s position. Our culture reacts by who they think the writer is, a snowflake or a deplorable, then weighs in with support or denial. When there is disagreement, the debate will always bring hostility to the subject’s original intent or those with differing views. They can’t have an opinion; they are on the other team! The comments will get away from the content or topic, focusing on the controversy, adding facts where the words can dig further into the heart of someone they destain.

Because of this demoralizing, hide behind the keyboard world of communicating, many withhold participating, not wanting to get into the conflict. My opinion is that the cancel culture has created an environment where many well-minded people are less inclined to engage. Richard Nixon coined the term the silent majority before social media ever existed. They hold an essential position in our culture and aren’t engaging, from what I can see.

Culture has been much further downstream from politics before social media, as was religion and many other aspects of our daily lives. Today’s environment of twenty-four hours of entertainment masquerading as news adds to the fury. It has pulled the political world into our culture. We don’t see the healthy discussion that grew our country into the greatest nation on earth anymore. It is us against them, a civil war. There is no admiration for someone thoughtful enough to debate with an open mind.

There is only one way to curb the tide. It is with unity. Unity starts with humility, love, and respect. If we see one another as snowflakes or a basket of deplorables engaging in a political war, no dialog will find common ground. We infect our group(s) into falling deeper and deeper into extremes when we shun a differing view or only listen to those we sense are from similarly minded people.

I self describe myself as part of the silent majority. That group doesn’t have large populations of either political party. We are a group that values diversity, knowing by history what sharing ideas have given us. It comes from conversations I have outside the world of authors or trolls posting away into the world of social media. Our world is filled with love and compassion held by an assortment of people. We are united.

When we converse in person, it is easy to see a different view is based on the topic at hand. Not something to be held personally. When we get into social media, most take a unique perspective as personal and shut down. They take offense to either double down or feel devalued. It is unhealthy—counter to our daily personal conversations, against what will continue to move us forward as a nation.

As we do in person, we need to realize that most online communication shows a view perhaps unseen by a homogeneous group. I have taken to social media with ideas I haven’t read on social media. I intend not to sit idle, showing we can have our views and not become victims. It hasn’t always gone well. I will take responsibility for stirring the pot occasionally, so a differing opinion is cast into the dialog. I love when my friends debate points. Together we become better. I have gone wrong by not respecting a position where fingers are pointed rather than discussion held. I am sorry for those times if I have offended someone.

If I write going forward, my views come from being an unapologetic Christian, believing in families, knowing self-reliance builds independence, and that all are safe in my space. Safe meaning I listen, holding no judgment so that I can learn.

If you have read this far, know of my love and admiration. Not only for who you are, but how you will add to my life.


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