2017-03-16 / Letters

Time to look at our similarities, not differences

It’s been four months since the election, and the people of this great nation are becoming more fully entrenched in their respective silos with each passing day.

It’s truly astonishing to me to watch breaking news on CNN and then flip to Fox News to watch the same story unfold in a spectacularly different way. There are truly two separate realities.

How did we get here?

There has been much talk over the last several months about what is “normal” and what is unprecedented.

It seems the lines just keep getting moved as we become slowly desensitized to cruelty, misogyny, racism, lies, paranoia and fear.

Some of us ask ourselves whether we are falling victim to conspiracy-thinking or whether our wildest fears are actually coming true. I’m absolutely heartbroken that we seem to have lost our inclination to have spirited arguments about policy differences.

Now we are incredulous and the opposing side is horrible. We’ve made it personal. It’s not just differing views, it’s “I’m good” and “you’re crazy.” “How could anyone think that way? What’s wrong with them?”

I am absolutely befuddled that almost half of the voting population wanted Trump in the White House—can’t wrap my head around that most days—because what I see is an incredibly unprepared, mean-spirited, dangerously narcissistic, paranoid con man who has absolutely no interest in doing the right thing, ever.

But there are millions of people in this country who see a smart, sincere, successful deal-maker who can shake things up in Washington. Neither side will change their views easily. So how do we bridge the widening gap?

For me, it means moving from my gut to my head: less personal, more intellectual. Seek the facts and separate them from propaganda and hyperbole.

I find solace in truth, dignity and the rule of law. Our “Great Experiment” depends on these ideals. I hope that’s something on which we can all agree.

Dee Nitzsche
Thousand Oaks

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