Lately, an Un-Civil War has begun in our country. This war does not involve guns and bullets, but one that involves words, expressions, insults and mean characterizations that are just as deadly. Our country’s Civil War, experienced over 150 years ago, tore the fabric of our nation, and this Un-Civil War we are now witnessing is threatening the very foundation of our beloved America. The very integrity of our democracy is at stake.
Where have our tolerances, understanding and civil debates gone? Why is it that even when we disagree on an issue, we can’t still appreciate one another’s views? Why is it that because I voted for my candidate I’ve become your enemy when I didn’t vote for yours? For centuries we have lived together in harmony, especially when our political leanings collided. We showed respect to one another’s views even in the darkest days of our nation’s history, during wars and peaceful times alike. When did we throw away our civil discourse and why? Have good manners, grace, decency and respect gone out of fashion?
My fellow Americans, we can agree to disagree, but remain respectful. We can vote for different political candidates but remain friends. We can argue strongly in favor of our views, but recognize that others may just as strongly hold different opinions and have the right to be heard. I am the proud grandfather of 13 grandchildren, and I am embarrassed to talk to them about this un-civil war being waged all around them. Let us lead the way in our neighborhoods, communities, towns and cities everywhere by instilling in our young the beauty of civil discourse, the legitimacy of views contrary to ours, and the generosity of spirit in debates. Let us stop this dangerous drift toward this Un-Civil War which is tearing us apart.
Salim Najjar, Carmel