Abraham Lincoln, in possibly the most famous debate in American history, once stated a, "A house divided against itself cannot stand." Unfortunately, I think today's sorry state of affairs has him rolling in his grave. We have become a house divided; actually we have become like a house with cracks in the foundation. Rancor and animosity have become the norm between differing opinions on nearly every topic. No one can have civil discourse anymore without breaking down into emotional and irrational name-calling. We "defriend" those who disagree with us, creating our own little silos and echo chambers that keep out any chance for differing viewpoints. Moreover, we create a breeding ground for "fake news" and "alternative facts".
Don't get me wrong--I like and utilize social media as much as the next person. Further, I do like conversing with like-minded peers. Arguing is stressful and requires effort. However, how can my arguments ever grow if I keep them stagnated like this? If I never hear another opinion through the white noise all around me, I leave myself with no ability to learn anything new. Is that really any way to live? No--instead it leads me into a world where I was utterly shocked when Secretary Clinton lost the election. My Facebook feed made it seem like she had it in the bag, no questions asked. Clearly (unfortunately) this was not the case.
With this in mind, I have decided to take this blog in a very specific direction. The main feature will be a weekly debate. Topics will range over a wide variety of subjects. Each side will have the chance to submit an opening statement in the beginning of the week, a rebuttal in the middle of the week, and a closing statement by the end of the week. Name-calling is strictly forbidden. Arguments will be based on supported facts and data. The environment will be respectful and organized. And hopefully, in the end we will all learn a little something. Even if one side or the other doesn't sway us, we will at least know that it exists.
This is an ongoing experiment that is bound to change and grow. Some things will work, others won't, and others will fall somewhere in between. I am really looking forward to going through this process, and I hope you readers are as well. Anyone is highly encouraged to become a debater, or submit a comment in response to any part of the debate. All questions, comments, or concerns are invited.
Thanks everyone for your time and consideration!