If you’re like me, you are watching the chaos and cataclysmic events happening across America with great sadness.
I have watched bad police officers use excessive force to kill subdued suspects, such as George Floyd. And I have seen good police officers, such as David Dorn, murdered because of a growing hatred of the police force by society.
I stand by and watch two corrupt, out-of-touch political parties further the divide in America. Each side now views the other as the enemy.
Meanwhile, as an independent, I am here in the middle wondering how we got to this point.
Is it so hard to love one another?
How do we eradicate the growing divisiveness in America? Since the lobbyists and corrupt lifetime politicians have no interest in doing so, how about you and I figure this out together?
In the Current Crisis, Who Is to Blame?
I read all of the toxic Twitter comments. One side places all of the blame on the suspect for not complying, while the other looks at the police force as cruel and looking for reasons to kill.
In reality, as in most aspects of life, the truth lies somewhere in the middle.
A Bad Apple Ruins the Bunch
There is no room for “bad apples” in certain job fields, including police service, surgeons, etc. In America, we must get better at weeding out the bad ones from the start.
If you see something, say something.
Whether this means additional personality exams or ongoing sensitivity training, I don’t know. Whatever the case may be, the current situation is not good enough.
With that said, I believe most officers of the law are not starting their day thinking, “who can I kill today?” I have friends, like Daniel, who are not only great cops but amazing human beings. I can see why they would feel frustrated of being lumped in and hated because of their chosen profession.
While you’re fighting for justice, just remember not to throw disrespect at an officer you see at the store, restaurant, or game because of the experiences you’ve had or read about. The ones you’re insulting may actually be part of the solution; alienating them won’t solve the problems or help the future state of this country.
Stop Fighting Law Enforcement
I can’t say this simply enough. When stopped by a police officer, whether it be for speeding or a serious crime, being respectful and promptly complying with their orders will make the situation go as well as it could.
If you have committed a crime, then you have to face the consequences for your actions. If you disagree with your arrest or citation, you will have your chance to lawyer up and fight this battle in court.
I don’t know any situations in which trying to fight law enforcement turns out well. Even if you manage to escape, a warrant will be put out for your arrest, and you will be caught sooner or later.
Shoot to Subdue, Not Kill
When possible, it’s important officers do everything in their power to end the situation without anyone getting seriously injured or killed.
I understand there are certain moments where this is not possible. I also understand the unpredictable nature of this line of work, and I take my hat off for all those who serve honorably.
However, there must be a level of restraint. If the altercation reaches the point where a gun must be used, unless your life or another’s is in imminent serious danger, attempt to target in a way to knock them off their feet.
Then, you can cuff the suspect and escort the individual to jail where they will be processed and ultimately face their day in court. Once subdued, do not take your anger and frustration out on them no matter how much of a pain in the ass they have been. Once they are secured, it’s your job to get them to the holding facility safely.
I know this is a job I couldn’t handle or be brave enough to take on, but for those who are, it’s important the mindset is trained long before an altercation ever takes place. So when those split-second decisions come at you, your mind is already naturally reacting based on how you have been trained.
Perhaps the current training system is inadequate; I don’t have firsthand knowledge on that, but it feels like something that needs to be revisited.
Regardless, society needs a strong and stable police force that is fair to everyone. Law enforcement and society need to be cohesive, not at each other’s throats. There needs to be respect shown both ways.
How Do We Improve and Reunite as One?
Follow the Golden Rule
How we bring America back together is no doubt a gray area, and the way forward is not crystal clear. I believe it all starts with showing love and respect to your brothers and sisters.
When you treat others how you’d like to be treated, more often than not, you can overcome any political disagreements.
Interacting With Different Backgrounds Through Travel, Sports, and College
Eliminating Divisiveness Through Sports
I’m thankful to have had exposure at a young age to people from different backgrounds, races, ethnicities, and countries.
At the age of 5, I met a kid by the name of Chris, and he just so happened to be black; we bonded over our love for the game of basketball. We became the best of friends and remain so to this very day; I’ve got nothing but love for him, and I’ll always proudly stand by and listen to his concerns.
He is just one example of many of how sports can help bridge the gap in today’s society.
Eliminating Divisiveness Through Your College or University
Perhaps you grew up in a small town where there isn’t as much diversity. That’s okay.
If you decide to branch off and start higher education at a college or university of your choosing, there will be plenty of chances to meet people from a wide variety of backgrounds.
This is perhaps the perfect time to start learning more about other cultures from the people you meet. I also highly recommend adding Global Studies as a second major like I did; your classes in this program are virtually guaranteed to be the most diverse.
Eliminating Divisiveness Through Travel
Saving arguably the most important way of getting rid of the divisiveness in America for last, travel will open your eyes to how the world truly is. The media is filled with half-truths and sensationalism as those are what drive clicks and views.
Go and see the world with your own two eyes. Anyone from even the smallest of towns can help change the world. A simple act of kindness can go a long way.
Reality vs Perception
Upon connecting with others around the world, you will realize how foolish you were to ever pay attention to the propaganda spewed through your TV.
I am speaking from personal experience on this as I wasn’t always the independent I am now; for those curious, I used to consider myself a Republican.
Travel helped me see things clearer, opened my mind, and erased the political stubbornness I once held; it can do the same for you.
Despite disliking the corrupt political system and disagreeing on many issues, I used to give the typical talking points from Fox News. I have always found America’s obsession with guns to be strange and unnecessary. In addition, our lack of first-class public transportation in America is a sad joke when you compare to much of the world, such as Europe or especially Asia.
However, I used to dare not speak on these as I viewed it as Republicans vs Democrats, and these are unpopular viewpoints in the Republican party.
And I say all of this not to just pick on people on the right side of the aisle; the left-wing and its media, such as CNN and MSNBC, do the exact same thing.
As a country, we need to start fact-checking articles and videos we come across before sharing; confirmation bias is a dangerous thing. Blindly sharing articles on social media because it fits your agenda adds no value.
Also, we must stop taking what the mainstream media tells us as gospel. What is their agenda? Who is their target audience? Who are their sponsors?
And most importantly, we need to start thinking for ourselves. Don’t just hash out repetitive talking points; make an effort to be informed and make a rational decision for yourself, regardless of how popular it may or may not be.
We have too many politicians in America these days and not nearly enough critical thinkers. From top-to-bottom, we can all do better.
Difference in Religion
I am a Christian, yet some will have you believe that we are incapable of being friends with people of different beliefs. Last time I checked, God said to love everyone; there were no conditions attached to that.
And regardless of what belief system, if any, you hold, the concept of treating each other with love and respect applies to everyone.
At the end of the day, though we may come from different countries and speak different languages, we all share this earth together.
Once you come to this realization and stop looking at each other as the enemy, we can begin to break down those barriers one friendship at a time.
What Are Your Thoughts?
No matter your background, race, ethnicity, or gender, your voice matters here. Whether you agree or disagree with my point-of-view, I respect your opinion and will always take others’ thoughts into consideration. I give you this platform to speak from your perspective. All I ask is that you be respectful. Together, maybe we can come one step closer to eradicating divisiveness in America. A united America is a stronger America.
As always, please feel free to leave comments/questions as I will be reading each & every one of them and responding. If you want to know something, ask away! Do not hesitate to contact us if you need anything at all or would like to chat! Please hit those follow, share, & like buttons; just don’t eat the apple. Until next time, stay traveling (safely)!