I have not seen the United States of America, the land I love, so torn up since the late 60’s. The name-calling, the divisions, the neighbor pitted against neighbor….the lack of civil discourse. If this has been planted by the Russians, as they have been accused of doing, then they are winning and we, the people, are losing.
So, I ask you who read my posts to stand up with me for cilvil discourse. What does that mean?
- No name calling (only exception is in your car, and another car cuts you off, and then only in a mutter).
- Use only stories you know from your own experience or from a source that gives you documentation.
- This means checking facts before you believe what you hear, and especially before you repeat them, when they come from left or right wing media. The more extreme the facts, the more need to confirm their reliability. (They may have been planted by the Russians to make us distrust each other more. And, see above….it is working)
- When someone you do like is saying something you don’t like, try “tell me more about how you came to that conclusion.” Don’t just change the subject. Try to find points of agreement .We have to lean into these conversations with respect and deep listening. Keep an open mind.
- Be a champion for civil discourse. Don’t just keep quiet when people make outrageous statements in your presence. Especially when you basically agreed with their sentiments. This means calming down your own side.
- Advocate for communication. Take a stand for difficult conversations with respect when you don’t agree with the other person.
- Encourage others to use these skills.
- Keep in mind, there are usually legitimate facts and feeling on each side. Let’s get down to what the fears are and find a way to work together to solve problems, rather than blame “the other.”
- And, remember, no name-calling.
In the end, we as individuals get to choose how we live each day. We get to choose how we treat the people with whom we interact each day. We can choose to be a force for civil discourse. Please join me.
Happy Independence Day.