Opinion: Cry for unity

Nation needs to start listening, start compromising


Evie Snoeyink

The American flag stands outside the doors of NCHS. The stars and stripes are symbolic of the democratic ideals that are fading today.

When George Washington left office he warned Americans of the dangers of political parties. But now, as a country, we still find ourselves running to them and are facing all the ramifications Washington predicted.  

It’s time for our nation to stop dividing and start unifying. America has become so polarized and so divided that Americans have become blind to the fact that this country is tearing at the seams.  

Politicians are voting in the best interest of their party, not their country. The nightly news has become a battle between Democrats and Republicans, each side demonizing the other.  No one willing to stop and listen to the other side.

In a speech Abraham Lincoln gave at the Republican State Convention, the president said, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” Our nation is not going to be able to withstand the divisiveness that is splitting our country in half if we don’t start to change.

Our nation needs compromise.

Data from this year shows, 83% percent of Democrats believe providing healthcare should be a job of the government, whereas 73% of Republicans do not. In 2017 the numbers showed that 84% of Democrats believe that immigrants help benefit our country, whereas only 42% of Republicans share that belief. In regards to diplomacy, 83% of Democrats see good diplomacy as a way to create peace, whereas only 33% of Republicans agree, the rest believe military strength is the way to ensure peace.

With views so polarized, compromise is necessary or else our country will be forced into gridlock; especially now that, after the midterm elections, the Democrats have control of the House and the Republicans have of control the Senate- bipartisan support is now a necessity.

We must remember that we are citizens of the United States of America, and united we should be standing.

It is important to have debates and disagreements. In fact, it is essential to preserve the principles of democracy. But those debates and disagreements are only effective when the people doing the debating are listening as well as arguing.

There must be a conscious decision to compromise with opposing sides. The current political climate has gotten to the point where people are so caught up in winning that they can’t see that we are all actually losing.  No one is agreeing so nothing is progressing.

Neither party is willing to meet in the middle on issues concerning topics such as gun control, immigration, and health care policies, and since no one is willing to compromise on those issues they are remaining unresolved.  

In 2010, The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) was passed, due to the Democratic majority, even though no Republican voted for the bill. Now that Congress is divided between Democrats and Republicans occurrences like that can no longer happen, for the better because it allows more voices to be represented, but it also means finding a way to meet in the middle just became more important.

In the Kavanaugh hearing, Senator Jeff Flake voted against his party’s beliefs to postpone the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh into the Supreme Court. Flake, in a 60 Minutes interview, afterward said that he would never have been able to vote that way if he was going to run for re-election.    

Politicians are now at the mercy of their political parties. Terrified to vote their conscience if it means going against their party in fear that they will not get the votes or support needed to be re-elected.

But the blames doesn’t fall solely on the Politicians. As voters, we have added to the environment in which politicians are terrified to vote for what is best for our country if it means stepping over political lines.  

As a country, we need to at least be able to give the other side a valid chance and be open-minded to different views. Right now in our society, it seems like the word compromise has become taboo. We are all so caught up in our side being right that we are losing sight of what right really is.

It’s never too late to start making amends, and it is never too earlier to start making amends either.

The key to creating unity is finding respect and a level of understanding. People do not need to always agree to be united, they just need to make a conscious effort to see the world through multiple lenses rather than just one.

The American flag waves both red and blue. America is known for its diversity. Let’s use that diversity to our strengths rather than letting it tear us down. Let’s let the 50 stars on our flag serve as a reminder that we all stand as “one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”  

If we really want to make America great again then we need to stop dividing and start unifying.