To The Editor:
All of us in this county are concerned about how to best restore our democracy to what we have been told was its Golden Age in the past.
Whether we come from the right or the left we want a country that works but we view the issues and solutions very differently, probably because we are hard-wired to do so.
Much research is being done to understand why we have the perspectives that we have and the most recent conclusion is that we are born that way. Over our lifetimes we then choose the people and solutions that support what we already feel.
Scientists have a term “motivated reasoning,” which means that when our feelings are challenged or called into question we double down on our beliefs rather than deal with what the other side is saying.
It also seems that having both conservative and liberal views in a society is what keeps it stable and working for everyone’s benefit. It is something that we evolved into in order to work together. But here’s the kicker: When the divide becomes an unbridgeable chasm, we can no longer uphold stability and the culture flies apart. That is not to the benefit of most of us.
Throughout history there has been a small group that does benefit, for a while, from promoting our different perspectives and that is occurring in this country and this county now. We don’t need to give up our own views but we do need to start listening to each other and use those views to restore our democracy. Not the way it was or the way we think it was in the past but for the future and our children.
Voting in local elections is the best way to do that. They are the easiest to understand and we often know the candidates, too. Next are the state elections. These two are way more important to our lives than the national elections, which get all of the publicity.
So vote for the best in Killeen and Bell County, whatever side you are on.