A House severely divided

David Hayes, Herald Contributor

Abraham Lincoln once stated, “A house divided, cannot stand.” How then, are we still standing?

Political polarization has become one of the greatest threats to the American political system. Liberals and conservatives, democrats and republicans all find no common ground while pushing to divide Americans to the point of no compromise at all. Polarization has become such a blatant issue, that you can see it on election maps; coasts vote blue, the middle of the country votes red and all Americans become even more divided.

This is not one party’s fault, but it is a failure for both, as both are responsible for the increased polarization of American politics. Republicans and conservatives made it clear that they did not want to work with the Obama administration, and in the age of Trump, they have chosen to stand by an egotistical man-child and throw true conservatism to the wayside. Democrats and liberals, on the other hand, come across as elitist and elicit division among their own ranks which make it challenging for any progress to be made.

In order for our democracy to work, we need to come together once again. When we come together, it should not be as democrats and republicans, or liberals and conservatives, but as Americans. That is who we are. We are not defined by parties and ideologies. Yes, they may be a title to generalize what we believe, but at the end of the day, we all want what is best for all.

To some, that sounds naïve and idealistic, but so is our American democracy. A vision for a government of representatives to adhere to the voices of its citizen and one that overcomes numerous challenges and succeeds. We need to come together and succeed, not as a nation divided between parties and ideologies, but as Americans who want to help one another.

We need to talk to each other and respect others opinions. We shouldn’t have shouting matches and call it a debate, we shouldn’t erode trust in our institutions and act as if it is one way or the highway. Our democracy is at stake, and if the course is not changed soon, it may be too far gone to change in the near future.