I often become the peacemaker in any righteous debate. This cumbersome role usually prevents me from taking any side too harshly. As Robert Frost said, “A liberal man is too broad-minded to take his own side in a quarrel.”
Perhaps Frost has a point. Others would call it indecisive, and still others would call it a “flip-flopper.” Some broad-minded individuals may even claim a peacemaking mission. Whatever the purpose, straddling the middle presents some interesting benefits while being intertwined in fiery opinions.
In this election season, debates have been raging online and in print. Sometimes they are overheard in heated conversations. The issues have run far and wide including such topics as the failing economy, marriage equality and fair punishment. Sometimes the participants sprint so far from the actual conflict that they turn around and point fingers, claiming that the opposition has lost their moral integrity and logical center.
This feeds into a theory I have been exploring. Certain types of people are expected to have certain beliefs. You can’t be a vegan and vote republican. If you have Christian background, better vote yes on the marriage amendment. Democrats are communists and Republicans are warmongers.
Recently, I was speaking to a fellow student about the recent campaign developments. He expressed his extreme support of Obama’s re-election. When I asked the reason why he responded, “Because Romney’s a Mormon of course.”
Avoid over generalizations and limiting labels. Keep on keepin’ on and debate, but do so reasonably. If you don’t, other peacemakers and I will be happy to remind you each of your valid points and of your ridiculous heresay.
BY APRIL KNUTSON