By Kevin Small
It seems as if anymore, we just can’t agree to disagree. More and more often, it appears that people take the view that if you disagree with me, you must be my enemy and as a result, politics — local and national — have become more about hate and vitriol than fact and discourse.
It is, however, possible for us to disagree and still be friends, or at least disagree and not hate each other. It is realistic for us to disagree on one issue and fight tooth and nail and side by side to advance other ideas and goals that we have in common.
Are there single issues that will keep me from voting for a candidate? Absolutely. Just because you and I disagree about something I am passionate about, though, does not mean you are my enemy or that you are a bad person.
When we go from disagreement to despising, the debate is no longer moved forward. Rather than discussing facts and ideas, the discussion becomes opinion, emotion and often character assassination. Be honest, how many stories have you read on social media that you later found out were untrue.
When we disagree, is the mission to win the heart or win the argument?
We, in America, need to learn again how to disagree and discuss the issues. Social media has made is so easy to throw out an opinion without taking time to fact check or research or even really think what we are saying.
Let us learn again how to discuss our ideas, our goals and yes, our differences. Next time you or I run into a difference of opinion or direction and are deciding what to do, we would do well to remember the advice of Pete Wilson.
“You can make a point or you can make a difference,” he advised.
Before posting a heated opinion to social media, take the time to call the business owner, the principal, city hall, the sheriff or your representative in state or federal government. Ask questions. Express your concern. Then armed with the facts make a factual statement or ask a sincere question.
The root of the word community is common and unity. Let’s make this the best community by disagreeing well.