A Tale of Two Societies
America is quickly becoming two countries within one state. I knew that America had been polarized for awhile, but this election has cemented this reality for me. Americans are divided by race, gender, political party and many other things. It is easy to see the this division in action: open a liberal/Democrat leaning website (such as the New York Times) and a conservative/Republican leaning website (such as Breitbart News).
Look at how what stories are covered, how the sites cover them and what the comments are. I literally see two different, very angry societies. In the best case scenario, people will achieve catharsis by expressing their frustrations and diametrically opposed viewpoints. America has experienced several divided eras in its history and has survived each time. Let us hope the current division is another brief time of trials.
However, I must confront a worst case scenario as well. Only one person can win the U.S. Presidency. Undoubtedly, the loser’s supporters will be agitated and may not perceive the election as legitimate. While I doubt there would be wide scale civil war, the next President and the rest of our government would be deeply distrusted by the population.
Eventually, faith in our institutions could erode completely and then our society will disintegrate. The transition between the Roman Republic to the Roman Empire took at least a century. We may be seeing the beginning of the end for our current form of government.
At any rate, I am cautiously optimistic. Much work needs to be done at all levels. Our country must channel our frustrations into constructive action. Otherwise, our civilization will end, the victim of two angry, divergent groups who could not agree on anything.
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Originally published at theprimacyofpolitics.blogspot.com on October 15, 2016.