Monday, January 10, 2011

Can't We All Just Get Along?

PopSpiracy sends sincere condolences to the individuals and families impacted by the Arizona shootings that injured numerous victims including Congresswoman Giffords and killed several others, including a child.

I have long been opposed to partisan politics and my car proudly displays a custom-made bumper sticker that encourages us to put aside party affiliations and focus on decisions, something that seems more relevant now than ever. I created it to add a little balance to the numerous extremist bumper stickers I have been seeing more of in recent times, apparently it could not be more relevant.

It is too early to jump to conclusions as to the exact motives behind this incident, that will emerge in due time. However, I will take this moment to pause and reflect on those lost and to remind everyone to think about your own individual words and actions regarding party politics. You are contributing to a lot more than you think with the words you chose and the actions you decide to display. It doesn't matter which side of the fence you are on, while we all have disagreements, BOTH parties want a better America, on that we can all agree.

Bear in mind that if you are on the right or left, if you only chose to listen to news arriving to you from organizations slanted on one side, you will see a distorted picture of the other. A more balanced list of news sources will give you a stronger representation of both halves. I cannot express how many people on each side have taken to skewed information designed to incite hysteria, propaganda, and extremism and am consistently shocked at comments seemingly average Americans are making. This negativity is the last thing that will take our country out of hard times and is not a healthy aim for whichever party you call home. We are better than this and this bickering can only serve to destroy one of the many things that make our country great - our ability to infuse differences and give others a chance. Yes, you have the freedom to say and do what you want. Do not mistake this for an excuse to be anything less than the best you can be. My thoughts are with Republicans and Liberals tonight, that we may all learn from this tragedy and realize what has been created so that we can dismantle it. The parties have always had their own collective identities and beliefs and this is completely acceptable in a democratic society, but there is a way to have an intelligent discussion and not flat-out put-downs and insults. I encourage everyone to aim to listen more and condemn less and to try not to magnify petty differences.

I also want to express my disappointment in several media outlets, including NPR (most shocking), for falsely reporting that Congresswoman Giffords was dead. The media has long played into fear and the intense political division we are seeing. I hope that more news outlets commit themselves to having the facts and checking sources prior to releasing information, an increasing threat to honesty in media in a digital age where news travels fast and anything without merit can be quickly published in the name of ratings and money.

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