In a country as divided as the United States of America is in 2017, one would think that her people would be hungry for truth. One would assume that many voices offering perspective and honest thought would be a welcome commodity. It appears that we have been divided to the point that differing ideas are no longer different, they are simply labeled either “with us” or “against us.”
This is not just divisive. This is dangerous.
Last night, a concerted attack was launched against this site, Eat Pray Vote, and against its writers. It has been noted by this writer that over the last few weeks, both online in Twitter, and in some of our blog comments that we have been increasingly attacked for some of our criticisms of the political climate in our country. More and more, we have been seeing, not just here, but across the spectrum in the political opinion environment, a temperature rise of hatred. For people having an opinion and for voicing it. You know, like the First Amendment allows, guarantees and protects. Our free speech is fundamental to a truly free society. Yet, it would appear that some would have it otherwise. That is the slippery slope into censorship and shutting out the voices and ideas that can bring about change and progress. That is dangerous.
Here’s the thing about Eat Pray Vote. We have writers from across the board. We have those who are looking for life from a liberal standpoint, from a conservative standpoint, younger folks, older (ahem) folks, folks from the North, South, East and West. We, as writers rarely agree 100% on ANYTHING! (You should see some of our private writer’s group convos!) But, what we do have is respect for one another. As a conservative, I will disagree strongly with another writer who is liberal. We will debate and even jab one another on hard issues. But we do not resort to hateful words or tactics. We allow one another their own opinion and their absolute right to express it. Because exercising that right is far more productive than shutting down the voices who use it.
In our backgrounds, experiences, our ages, our political and social belief we are all different, but, for many of us, EPV is a home. We have come together to build something, not for ourselves, but for a reading public that has open minds and open hearts and wants to hear all views. America is about that. It is about listening and learning and being willing to merge together and, while not always agreeing on everything, allowing ourselves to disagree with kindness and build our disagreements into something positive for the benefit of all. This is what we, at EPV, have tried to do. And will continue to do. Because, despite our differences, we don’t engage in hate. We don’t engage in attacks. We don’t believe in the “us against them” mentality. We have true affection for one another and for those who read us. Thank you for being one of our readers. We will continue to write and agree and disagree and we are honored to be here for you.