You know them. They are individuals who cling to a political party or view with fervor and have developed a myopic view of the world that is unchangeable. I know these people because I am often one myself. As I get older, I am finding that it is more comforting to cling to a set vision of the world than to grow and accept change. The only problem is that I want better for myself than this. I don’t want to be that cranky old senior that is not looking at the needs and ideas of the generation of my children. How can I avoid becoming entrenched?
Some of the things that I am doing to avoid this problem is to talk with others that have different viewpoints. I am blessed with many opportunities to do this in my extended family since I am totally outnumbered. What are some good points that they might bring up? What parts of their arguments could I agree with? How have things changed in their lifetime? Reading thoughtful literature and news articles about other viewpoints is helpful too.
I really want to look at our world and country in a broader scope than a playing field divided into two teams. The problems of our country are very complex and in order to solve these problems we must be willing to accept that there are good ideas to be found from both political parties. This is hard to do in our culture because our reality show media likes to get a buzz going. Showing politicians arguing and saying outlandish things sells. People like to watch “news shows” where the news is spun so they can agree with everything that is said. It validates that their team is winning and most importantly it means they are right.
Is it more important to be real or to be right? With the election just around the corner, there will be no escape from people desperately wanting their team to win. But this isn’t a game and the decisions being made will affect our lives and those we love. I’m hoping that I can dig out and accept my responsibility as an American and Global citizen and at the same time grow as an individual.