After spending most of my adult life teaching government to high school seniors (and not all of that time in the so-called “government schools” either), I am appalled and embarrassed by the statements made in reference to our latest Presidential elections.
Our lack of attention paid to civics education is finally coming home to roost.
One of the basic principles of democracy (and, by extension, representative democracy) is compromise. Democracy cannot survive if the participants are not willing to compromise in order to find a workable solution.
I know that they can be heavy reading, but all we have to do is read “The Federalist Papers” to understand why the system was designed the way it was. Compromise is at the core of the Constitution.
The newly minted “secessionist” movement and many of the letters printed in The Citizen go way beyond mere political differences. There is a growing movement AWAY from Mr. Lincoln’s government “of the people, by the people, and for the people.”
It is a nice thing that we have freedom of speech where people are allowed to voice their opposition to political decisions, but this is going WAY beyond that.
The system requires us to live with the results of elections, until such time as we can change those results at the voting booth. In the meantime, our elected leaders are required to come together and work for the good of the country, the WHOLE country … those folks we like and those folks we can’t stand.
I fully expect that I will be attacked for stating what seems so obvious. All I can say is that freedom of speech places a responsibility on us as citizens, along with the right — the responsibility — of hearing things we might not want to hear.
Keep the faith — faith in our system of government.
J. Peter Lewin