By K. Lee
Mo Anderson, a friend of mine, and former President and CEO of Keller Williams Realty
International, recently shared in her book "A Joy Filled Life" …
“Many believe that our political system is broken. I don’t believe that it is completely
broken, but it sure is in need of repair.” (The Divided State of America logo with the almost
completely torn flag seems to represent this position quite accurately.)
“We must think bigger, like the founding fathers of this country did. We must find a way
to work together to solve the major issues facing our country. My real concern is that our
principles and founding values are not being taught in school anymore.” (Mo was educated, and
worked early in life as a public school teacher.)
“The U.S. Constitution is often misrepresented, and many children no longer understand
how the framework of our nation was established. They don’t realize that our founding fathers
believed in a limited government whose primary job was to protect the rights and freedoms of
Mo quotes her husband, Richard as saying “Most people don’t want to really say what they
think for fear it might offend someone.” How incredibly sad is it that most people in our once
great country now live in fear of offending others?
Mo goes on to share “I know that outspoken debate was a healthy part of our founding father’s
conventions. They studied the lessons of very learned men, debated the issues vehemently, and
then laid down the fundamentals of our great democratic society.”
When asked what it would be like if she were President of the United State of America Mo
shares “I know that I’m not qualified for that high office, but if I were President, the first thing I’d
do is cut the budget and make sure we lived within it … I would have a a fireside chat with the
American people each month to teach and discuss the principles of the Constitution. I would
have brilliant, respected people on hand to educate Americans on our fundamental rights and
responsibilities. We would take time to discuss our basic founding principles … That is how I
have led every organization I’ve been a part of … It has always produced powerful results … My
life – from a tenant farm in the Dust Bowl to boardroom of a world-class company, and my path
from poverty to financial independence – is a testament to the fact that America is truly a land
of opportunity … Never forget that we are ‘One Nation Under God.’ Be grateful for where you
live, the freedoms you have and the opportunities it grants you. Love your country!”
So, did you catch it? Did you see how this uber successful woman points out that “thinking
bigger, working together, education, studying, and vehemently debating issues” would be key
foundational elements to fixing that which is badly broken? The Divided State of America was
formed to encourage discussion, debate, eduction and ultimately the opportunity for healing as
a natural by product of these actions. Are you doing what you can to stimulate these things?
Closed Minded - Immoral - Lazy - Dishonest - Unintelligent
By K. Lee
Take a look at the attached article and ask yourself ... If you believed someone to be these things: closed minded; immoral; lazy; and unintelligent would you likely ever be able to see anything else when you looked at them? Probably not. UNLESS ...
Unless you set aside your own beliefs, opinions, wants and desires for long enough to truly hear others. The United States is currently more divided than it can withstand. It is being torn apart and without some major repairs taking place pretty quickly it simply cannot be healed.
Whether your feelings, beliefs and opinions are in fact right, or wrong, doesn't matter at this point. Parties entrenched on opposite sides of any divide will perish and in the process will remain "right" while remaining entrenched and allowing each passing day to draw us ever closer to becoming "The Former United States of America." Having first written and spoken on this topic over a decade ago I realize that, regardless of the topic over which we are divided, most good people on any side of the divides don't want our nation to follow the path of "The Former USSR" and yet that's the very path our divisions are ever more rapidly leading us down.
In any relationship there are times when we can choose to have peace, or we can choose to be right. The two do not, and never will, go hand in hand at all times. Think back to relationships in your life where you, and someone close to you, were on opposite ends of an argument. If you both insisted on being right odds are that irreparable damage was done to the relationship. If however the two of you were able to set aside your differences long enough to engage in conversation, it is likely that you could also remember more things that you shared in common, including mutual admiration, and that the relationship was not only salvaged, but possibly even improved. What's the point? Willingly engaging in communication with an open mind creates an opportunity for a better tomorrow. Being closed minded, and "right" destroys any hope for a better tomorrow.
Look around our once great nation, do you see us as a country engaging in open minded conversations? Is it possible that if you, and others, were willing to set aside your adamant beliefs for just long enough to really hear others that we might have a chance to survive as a nation? It surely doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that the current situation can only lead to a painful end for the U.S.A. ... Is it better to be right, and to be no more, or is it better to do whatever we can do to create conversations without hostility?