Opinion: Pros and cons

This political season has, as expected, proven to have more of a half-life than a dirty bomb. And, many find themselves in an endless loop of angry social media posts and aspersions cast by both friends and relatives. Well, such is the nature of our civic experiment. The Founders faced it.  And we do, too. Their commitment to political activism, if failed, led to lifelong imprisonment, loss of worldly assets, or execution.  So, we can rest in firm confidence that our burden has been carried before – yet, it was at significantly greater personal risk.

Still, we are confronted with our own challenges. It seems that all issues have been subdivided – all too neatly – into camps.  Are we pros or cons? Regardless of the complexity of the matter, our elected officials, media elites, and academics have asserted that one must be either pro or con. But, how do we know our own stripes?  Aren’t these issues more nuanced than can be neatly labeled and segregated? Can one be both pro-trade and con-exchange? Can one be pro-immigration and at the same time con-illegal action?

Please understand that there is no intended secret code directed at the reader. Can one be a stalwart when the opposing view is also, at least from some perspective, a view that is widely held? For purposes of vote-getting and the cold pursuit of power, have we minimized important issues to the point that they have lost their core, fundamental question? The duality of we humans necessarily leads to complex questions. At once, we hope for a perfect world and live in one that is all too imperfect. Shouldn’t our rhetoric reflect this inherent conflict? Are we pro-con and con-pro? If we understand the complication of the issues, wouldn’t we be able to find a bit more patience for those still measuring the alternatives?