I think we’ve all forgotten something: the “other side” is hurting.
If you want Kavanaugh confirmed and are sick and tired of this delay, the other side feels like they’ve been gut-punched as they watch yet another story of a woman raked across the coals after sharing her deepest, darkest personal secret. They see insensitivity and hostility and believe women have been silenced long enough. They want change…not small change, but big change to shed light on socially acceptable nuances and the mistreatment of women.
If you want Kavanaugh removed from any chance of confirmation, the other side feels like their voices are once again being silenced, and that a deeply political agenda is superseding due process. They see a pattern of conservative values being targeted and called out, and then bellowed through a loud speaker as twisted, contorted and ultimately silenced and squashed. They feel like their voice is lost.
I love my friends on both “sides” of the issue. I understand why some people want Kavanaugh prosecuted. I also understand why some people want Kavanaugh confirmed. And while I hold my own opinions, I also know and understand that I do not know everything. I don’t trust the media (any media) to tell me the full truth.
I don’t know Christine Blasey Ford, but if I were to set her validity aside, I feel horrible for her family. Can you imagine how hard it would be to watch your soulmate or your mother be lambasted across the media and to see her treated like an animal?
I don’t know Kavanaugh, but if I were to set his guilt or innocence aside, I feel horrible for his wife and kids. What our country has done to him so publicly, whether he is innocent or not, is a tragedy if not just for the fact that his innocent children and wife have had to be in the crossfire.
We have positioned ourselves in this country into a posture of battle. We are standing on our own sides, weapons raised (mostly via social media), shouting from places of hurt.
C.S. Lewis once said, “You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you CAN start where you are and change the ending.”
We are so far in right now. We can’t go back and change how we got here. But we can start right where we are to change the ending.
We can commit to respect.
We can commit to doing our own research and drawing our own conclusions.
We can commit to leaving our echo chambers and venturing into conversations (in real life, not just online) with people who philosophically disagree with us.
We can commit to remembering and honoring the fact that we are all human, and that very few of us are actually monsters.
We can commit to showing our kids that real change happens when we work together, not when we pit ourselves against those we disagree with.
We can commit to asking honest questions, listening intently, and hearing what other people have to say.
We can’t change other people or control their behavior, but we can control how we respond to them. Our country would be a much better place if we would each take a look at our own heart and ask ourselves if we are really someone who the “other side” would want to talk to. If we’re not, we have the power to be. And I think in order to survive, we NEED to be.