The other day I was having a casual conversation about politics, when the person I was speaking with said, "you know, these days, Democrats are the only ones with a heart."
It took me a second to digest where this person was coming from. I mean, on the one hand, they were necessarily wrong; all human beings not only have a heart, but need a heart, or else they're probably not living.
But in the case that by 'having a heart', this person meant that Democrats are the only people with kindness; I still disagree entirely.
What does having a heart have to do with taxes and gun control?
Some may argue that opposing gun control is morally wrong - and so is believing in lower taxation for the rich. But why?
I firmly believe that each person is entitled to their own opinion. Yet, there is a rather large difference between uttering a blanket statement for a set of ideas and actually expressing an opinion.
For example, the person I was speaking with could have said, "it seems to me like Republicans who vote on bills that oppose gun control are insensitive to the lives lost from mass shootings." I'm sure some of you are thinking, 'yeah, sure, if only this was a perfect world'. But is it really too much to ask for people to say what they mean?
If you are going to judge something (anything) you should at absolute minimum burden yourself with considering why you reached the conclusion you did.
Not to mention, does anyone actually believe that all people who call themselves 'Republican' are the same?
Look, this country is essentially split 50/50 down the middle; the average American is either a Republican or a Democrat. Yet, given how different each American is from the other, how much do you really think these people have in common?
Do you really think that the Republican in California and the one in Texas are fighting for the same rights?
When I went to D.C for a congressional meeting I spoke with a Republican senator who told me that, as far as he has gathered from legislative debates between Democrats and Republicans, the only major issue separating them is abortion.
Even though most people think it's a huge number of issues, our representatives in D.C are only really disagreeing about, abortion. Let that sink in.
State to state people deal with different issues; depending on the state you live in, you probably have vastly different interests. So why would anyone believe that two parties could exclusively represent the American population?
I really wonder what percentage of Americans have a clear idea of what they think about politics, independents from the debate between Republicans and Democrats. It is actually really worrisome to me how easily people are brainwashed, how easily so-called individual begins to act like sheep.
A lot of Americans vote based off of the party they identify with. They don't take an extra minute to look into the candidate. Instead, the word 'Republican' or 'Democrat' informs the choice they will make, for them.
Hence, it goes without saying, we live in a day and age where the one thing most political commentators won't disagree about is that politics are polarized. Political parties especially are polarized.
I could go on about this for days, and although what I am about to say is not my earnest opinion, I am going to leave it at this: it is more than okay to be a Democrat or Republican but, you need to know why. You need to know what parts of the party you believe in, and you need to be wise enough to acknowledge that there must be parts that you don't.
Don't let political parties and polarized politics make you stupid.