from Reya Mellicker
The Capitol dome and the Library of Congress look like brothers in this pic, at least to me. But if you have a different opinion, that's OK!
Remember way back in the last millenium, during the 1990's when the phrase "Celebrate Diversity" was so popular? I do - well - vaguely. Celebrate diversity, eh? I think it's hard to even tolerate diversity, let alone celebrate it. Yet I agree with the sentiment. It's a worthy goal.
My habit is to blame things on the Bush administration, which is probably unfair as everything is so complicated that any superficial finger-pointing is just ridiculous.
It was during those years, though, that here in the U.S. we became so intolerant of each other. My friends who are congressional staffers tell me that Newt Gingrich instructed his staff not to fraternize with Democrats. From there it got worse and worse. Where, once upon a time, deals were made "across the aisle" as they say, now Congress is so divided that the whole process is kind of a joke.
It's not just within Congress that this rigid intolerance runs wild. I notice how carefully I walk on eggshells when speaking with a friend who is a moderate Republican, as if having different opinions from his is some kind of offensive situation. Why is it offensive to disagree? Why is it that so often people are personally insulted by the differing opinions of others? I thought that's what America was supposed to be about.
One of the reasons I love this blog is that although we have similar values, there are differences of opinion among us. I think that's a good thing. I've said before (and often) that I never learn anything new when talking to someone with whom I agree completely. Healthy debate, open minds and differing opinions expressed honestly and without vitriol could take all of us, (not just here on the blog) a whole lot closer to true compassion.
Peace, love and understanding. Yeah.