March 8, 2016
Solution to Divided Population Is Not to Unify Them. Solution Is To Teach Respect and Tolerance For Other Views
The proposed solution to polarization of the population is not to force conformity. Disagreeing may be extreme. But respect and tolerance for dissenting views makes for robust, exciting, interesting and thought provoking debate. Few Americans have ever been challenged with opposing arguments. Fewer were taught to respect people who disagree with them. Encouraging dissent is what leads to truth.
The narrative builds upon the all too apparent fact that there is great discontent and polarization inside the country. No one contests this conclusion. However, the framing of the narrative is turning everything upside down.
The narrative presents the scenario of two poles. The first pole is made up of those who are well-off, successful, and educated. They live in healthy families, and in good neighborhoods with excellent schools, which isolates and buffers them from the rest of America.
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On the other side is an underclass composed of those who are poor, uneducated, and neglected. They live in broken families, and in poor neighborhoods with horrible schools. They are joined by blue-collar workers who have lost jobs to immigrants and outsourcing to places like China. They live on the margins of society and are isolated from the other pole.
The two sides share little in common save an increasing animosity. This never-the-twain-shall-meet narrative can be found in Charles Murray’s compelling book, Coming Apart, or in Robert Putnam’s Our Kids. Pundits and columnists repeat and echo versions of this portrayal in diverse media.
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The proposed narrative to explain the present electoral cycle would not be based on the battle of the haves versus the have-nots. Rather it holds there is a universal moral crisis that is devastating all society. It is not just polarizing but shattering the nation and its economy into a thousand pieces.
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Both groupings see their families being destroyed through divorce and general breakdown. All share in the immoral movies, fashions, drugs, and promiscuity that recognize no class and ravage a social fiber where people no longer pray. Structures across the board are crumbling whether they be governments, families, institutions, or customs.
[. . .]
The narrative that should govern the debate should be one of unity, not division. It should be directed at the moral problems of this universal crisis, not against fellow Americans. The surviving ramparts of the nation’s moral establishment should be fortified, not torn down. People need to return to God as the center of our lives, not the federal government. These are the issues that few dare to mention in the present political circus, but they lie deep within the souls of so many Americans who grieve for the nation.
March 7, 2016
Who Is Framing the Narrative in the Political Debate?
By John Horvat II