Partisanship Has Rendered Political Process Ineffective

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Tad Clarke's editorial ("Cracking the Voter Vault," July 19) in part dealt with the unproductive, if not negative, effect of personalized mail that is not precisely targeted to the appropriate audience/individuals, in this case by Republicans. On this point we can all agree, irrespective of which political party (or other marketer) might be at fault.

However, it is his partisan and negative characterization of the GOP, and of Republicans in general, that I wish to address. In my opinion, such negative partisan rhetoric, which is particularly widespread among members of the press, has gotten far out of hand. It has contributed to a hostile, polarized climate in which approximately half the population falls on one side and half on the other.

This staunchly hostile political climate and highly polarized partisanship has rendered our political process completely ineffective in making any real progress on the critical issues that face our nation, in that it allows for no clear voting majority mandate on most serious issues. Catfights have become the norm in the Senate, in Congress, in the courts, during elections and in general throughout our land. Not at all productive in my view!

I submit that it is time for us all to return to being able to respectfully disagree without being so terribly disagreeable. It is time that we return to an understanding that we are all honorable and patriotic Americans who want what is best for America and for the world. In objective fairness, no one supports a poor economy, poor education, polluted vital resources or any of the myriad other problems we face as a nation.

Clearly, we would all be better served by acknowledging that our disagreement is merely a difference of opinion about how best to correct the problems and accomplish our noble common goals. By rights, the voting box should be the ultimate arbitrator, and we should respectfully accept the outcome, bearing in mind that there will certainly be another election!

If we cannot return to mutual American respect in spite of our differences of opinion, how can we ever expect citizens of the world beyond our borders to respect us? How can we ever fulfill the noble ideals that are truly shared by us all, and for which our founding fathers provided such an incredibly wonderful framework?

Foreign enemies have already struck a resoundingly evil blow against thousands of innocent victims on our very shores. Further, more devastating attacks are threatened and predicted!

It is my humble hope that now, more than ever, we can move forward as a shining global example of how differences should be aired, discussed, debated and ultimately resolved with character, dignity, respect, strength and resolve. This should be the stuff that makes real Americans. Can't we all agree on this, particularly during a time of war?

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