The mission of Both Sides of the Story is to provide comprehensive, nonpartisan facts to help the public understand all sides of a topic in order to make an informed conclusion and to encourage respectful conversations.
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How did we get into such a divisive period?
Too frequently, we hear stories about two black men kicked out of a Starbucks for not ordering anything, someone putting down one of our country’s war heroes battling terminal cancer because he has a different point of view.
Yes, there are also plenty of positive stories, but how as a country are we still not at a place where we respect each other no matter our backgrounds and beliefs?
It seems almost every day some news is breaking that distracts us from what was breaking yesterday. No one seems to agree on what is the important news of the day. Many people think Donald Trump enflamed the hatred and chaos, but in reality, would it be much different if Hillary Clinton were in office? It seems people feel more entitled to be disrespectful to those who are different from them or have different beliefs, but would we not feel just as entitled under a different president?
I, like many people, tend to watch and read the news that aligns with my belief system. Yes, I also look at other viewpoints, but I go back to the ones that make me most comfortable.
I enjoy thoughtful conversations with people whose views differ from mine and whom I respect. But I admit, these conversations can also make my blood boil when people we disagree.
Does looking at both sides help me become more open-minded? Possibly. But it primarily helps me understand what other people are reading and hearing, before I go back to the security of what makes me feel the most comfortable.
My question is not so much how did we become such a divisive nation, but how do we get out of this pattern?