In this country being an independent in politics these days can be very frustrating! Look at the extremes on either side that has controlled our respective parties for the past 20 years. What happened to that idea of the normal American who use to be more of a thoughtful moderate and who cared that all people's ideas are celebrated? The extremes of conservatism and liberalism have had our government polarized on a very few issues for so long.
President Bush and his administration were focused for the whole 8 years in office on cultivating a culture of fear, and a few issues that often certain groups seemed to dictate to his administration as the only issues important to the country.
When did we become a country of single issue voters who miss the important ideas like developing solid relationships with our allies and working with on compromise so we actually are able to function as partners with much of the rest of the world? Since when have we become the only country with all the right answers?
I know, these are a lot of nasty questions, but to be effective as that caring compassionate country we often try to portray to the world we need to allow others to be who they are and not rubber stamps of our own policies and beliefs all over their everyday lives. We are different because of circumstances, families, and cultures we grow up in, and one culture is not the best for a world with so different life experiences.
We see that even in the confines of a single family there are many ideas about what's right for the country and what changes need to be made to succeed as a nation, but without a willingness to compromise there is no real fellowship as a world of diverse peoples...just as I might win you might lose type of situation that fosters anger in that loser, and often fosters retaliation when each new President and party come to power after four or eight years.
In that kind of dynamic, there can be no space for change, and for some of us who have observed this for over 40 years no hope of anything other than constant battling for supremacy. Between the parties there is no reason important enough to learn how to share the gift of power for the betterment of all.
Extreme ideas come from having any group have their needs and ideas crushed over the years. First comes a feeling of being all alone and that can foster a mentality of, "I'm right and I'm going to make them all know that when I get to power they will have to follow MY rules!"
We often cannot talk or even share friendship with those outside our individual idealism groups. In some ways our forms of discrimination have become more fine tuned and unhappily more filled with hate. I wonder where our faith-filled love of our fellow man and woman has disappeared to....