The Catholic Church and Pennsylvania State University are guilty of covering up heinous abuses. Political institutions and businesses are guilty of covering up or spinning scandals. It is the nature of large institutions that are made up of imperfect people.
In the polarized political climate we currently live in, both major political parties are demonized equally, and not just by the other, but by individuals outside the parties, who are sick of the bickering and back and forth; by those who wish we all just got along. It might almost seem that the Democratic and Republican Parties are outdated relics of an age forgone and are only detrimental to our government and national psyche.
I belong to the Democratic Party, and I am proud of that fact. I disagree wholeheartedly with the major tenets of the Republican Party and the majority of their policy initiatives. However, I can, like most Democrats, look at members of the opposing party and tell you they are decent people. George H. W. Bush might have been the second most qualified man to ever run for president, after the father of the Constitution James Madison, of course.
With the obvious exception of race, for centuries, Americans came together on a simple agreement that we needed to move forward and that where we were wasn’t good enough. Whether that meant growing the economy through incentives to business or protecting the labor class, our policy disagreements were just that, and we were willing to compromise. Somewhere, we lost that flexibility.
America has political parties for a reason. It is for the same reason we have lobbying groups and parent-teacher organizations. When a group of people have a common objective, they band together to influence the government and the system we use to determine who will represent us there. Political parties are not bad for America, and not all politicians are liars and thieves.
Political parties allow us to participate in politics in an organized and effective fashion so that we might maximize our individual influence on the government. What is bad for America is a belief that our political party holds a monopoly on smart policy. Holding steadfast to your morals is one thing, but refusing to compromise on policy is another thing entirely.
Even on the most divisive of issues, we can find common ground if we try.
We can compromise on those policy issues, and we should. When used properly, political parties maximize our voice in the political process.
We should recognize we are all Americans here and meet in the middle.
Alexander B. Roberson