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Words To Think About

From Mark Thompson at The League of Ordinary Gentlemen:
It is indeed the case that political debate in this country is uncivil and inappropriate, dehumanizing and mean-spirited. But we cannot control what others say and do, we can only control what we ourselves say and do. Uncivil debate and a pervasively toxic “rhetorical climate” requires that more than one “side” play the game. It requires that no “side” make a concerted effort to figure out what the other “sides” are really trying to say in good faith, and focus instead solely on what they are saying in bad faith.

If we in fact are interested in improving the quality of tone and debate in this country, then we have to first commit to improving the quality of our own individual tone and debate rather than demanding that everyone else first do the same, and definitely rather than demanding that everyone else accept blame for everything they’ve done in the past.

We don’t need to apologize to one another, nor do we need an apology from one another. We just need to recognize our basic humanity and forgive each other without preconditions. Even if we can’t actually forgive, we can at least pretend to. We’re all stuck here together, and somehow we’ve managed to make it this long without the Republic falling apart, so maybe those other guys aren’t so bad after all.
My emphasis. Go read the whole piece -- it's really well done.