Naming names in the fault game

To the editor,

It is time to acknowledge the true peril we are facing. America has a critically serious problem with political division, a problem that has been growing for decades but has gotten so very serious in recent months that it may well portend the eventual doom of our beloved nation. It begs the question: Are we so out of sync with reality that we can’t even acknowledge that the very idea of democracy itself is in peril? Can’t we at least agree that the danger is real? It’s palpable.

And if we can agree on that, let’s get down to brass tacks, be courageous and start placing some blame where it belongs. After all, we don’t have the luxury anymore of avoiding the truth. Let us name the names of the chief culprits. Ready? Good. Here goes....

It’s us, man. Us. You and me. The author of this article and his readers. The simple truth is, we don’t know how to act anymore. We wouldn’t know the true meaning of a pluralistic state if it grew a bad yellow hairdo and little gesticulating frantic hands and grabbed us by the gonads. Our ability to engage in civil discourse has been stunted somehow, to the point where we are suddenly dumb-struck in our ability to perceive any opposing viewpoints as being even mildly worthy of respect. Simply put, we have fostered an environment that has allowed all of us – or at least the vast majority of us – to become way too comfortable with our roles as civic morons.

Yes. I meant to use that word. Not only for the shock value of its ugliness, which is considerable, but more so

for the pejorative accuracy of what it implies about our current levels of civic awareness. The word is all too appropriate. Trapped in the divine splendor of our own ideologically superior views, we blissfully wave bye-bye to the last vestiges of bipartisan anythingism.

Left. Right. Liberal. Conservative. No matter. We are all doomed to own a piece of the coming debacle and down-fall together, all the while being individually and collectively sure that the other side is fully to blame for our eventual demise. Isn’t that just so true? Don’t we all just luuuuvvvvv to offer up such profound evidence of what-ever-blah-blah-blah to counter the baseless arguments of the opposition, which claims whatever-blah-blah-blah?

Sadly, it seems increasingly likely that it is in this quality alone that we will truly be united together as fellow citizens for the very last time, that is in sharing the blame, one and all, left and right, for being so truly unworthy of the pluralistic republic we inherited.

– Chet Ian F. Walter, Durango