Okay, we know that our country is divided. 1/4 Republicans, 1/4 Democrats, 1/4 thinks they are both the same, so why bother, and 1/4 doesn't give a $hit, either way, so long as they don't miss DWTS.
Republicans and Democrats often talk like they are in a no-holds-barred fight for control of the universe, and it accomplishes nothing. Every time Democrats sneeringly call Republicans Tea Baggers or accuse them of bigotry because they see things differently, they are adding an ideological log to the fire. Every time Republicans contemptuously call Democrats commies or say they only want free stuff, they are adding a log to the fire.
Both sides think the other is blinded by propaganda. Both sides think the others don't "get it." Both sides think they are all right, and the other is all wrong. How can that be possible? This simply can't go on. How long before the fires block the sun, poison the air, and suffocate us? This dissension could lead to chaos; politics already seem perilously close to the edge. We have to reality check ourselves. We cannot blame politicians. We are getting exactly what our warfare demands.
Okay, what we have in common, even if we don't want to admit it.
Democrat and Republican regular folks are aware of and dislike the power and occasional corruption of corporations.
Many homeowners and retirees of both parties were affected by the crash of the housing market and Wall Street.
Regular-folk Republicans and Democrats are affected by environmental degradation. Republican and Democrat businesses both lost after the BP oil spill. Democrats and Republicans both like pelicans.
Democrats and Republicans want to work in a place that is safe as possible. No one wants to go to work and find barrels of hazardous waste tipped over. No miner, right or left, wants to find, after a cave in, that safety procedures were lax, or that their water is poisoned by runoff. No one wants to buy a car only to discover, later, it is being recalled because of a malfunction.
No one wants to serve their family tainted food or polluted water. Everyone wants to breathe fresh air.
Republicans and Democrats suffer when employers focus on profit, rather than profit AND the well-being of their employees.
Republicans and Democrats do not like the idea that the taxpayers are subsidizing profitable companies who pay their employees lower than living standard wages. Republicans and Democrats both work at low wage jobs.
Your average working Democrat and Republican are not getting rich in this economy. Both like capitalism, but don't want it to ruin us financially in the name of greed of the few.
People of both parties suffer when they are expected to work to support the economy, rather than the economy supporting them to achieve a good life.
Communities of Democrats and Republicans benefit from unemployment insurance, food stamps, energy assistance, Medicare, Medicaid, and other services our taxpayers through government offers its citizens. Local businesses benefit from these services. Few of us really want to see people die in the street from hunger or illness.
Republicans and Democrats, the average ones, want their children to have a good education and the ability to pursue their dreams.
Everyone wants to retire young enough to travel, hang out with their grandchildren, or work on their hobbies.
Republicans and Democrats want the government and courts to function effectively, to be accountable to the people, and to do as much as possible to coordinate the ability of our nation to function - without coercion or duplicity, and without infringment.
Most Democrats and Republicans want to keep guns away from criminals, while maintaining our right to own weapons.
Democrats and Republicans want to freely express their opinions, and for their right to speak to be respected, no matter how much everyone else disagrees.
Republicans and Democrats want to be able to freely worship or not, in their own ways, and to be free from the imposition of others on our beliefs.
Democrats and Republicans want accurate information from their health care providers and to know that their medical records are confidential. No one wants to be afraid to get the health care they need. Nor do they want public criticism of needed procedures.
Everyone (pretty much) wants a life with dignity, purpose, creature comforts, stability, good health, and some fun.
People like to feel they are part of something bigger than themselves. It is in our DNA to cooperate - that is how we have survived these millennia.
Somehow, we have to find a way to work together on the problems we agree exist. And a way to understand the positions of others about the things with which we REALLY disagree. This dissension can only get worse, unless we decide with intention and compassion that we want to do politics and social justice compatibly and with friendship. Does anyone really think that calling names will somehow make them change their minds or even join forces? Won't happen. Every person on the Internet makes a decision about the future every time we put fingers to keyboard. Every community makes a decision about the future in the way it cares for families and educates its children. We are damaging each other and our country with this dissension. We are also hurting ourselves.