With tension within U.S. politics boiling over, a controversial president tweeting out messages by the minute and dozens of democratic candidates throwing each other under the bus every day, the mainstream media has lost control of what really matters — the moral compass of this country.
Mainstream media on both sides of the political spectrum are so focused on proving their point or swaying audiences that they often misconstrue the news itself, or they create even more polarization in the political climate of the U.S. than what already exists. I guarantee if you were to scroll through Fox News and CNN, you would be able to find the same exact story told from a completely different perspective, creating a completely different narrative. And yet, these stories include enough to technically be accurate.
But is it really the fault of national media organizations that this country is so divided, or is it the fault of each and every one of the citizens of the U.S. that often place blame on others before they look in the mirror? I vote the latter.
The two-party system in the U.S., for the most part, has allowed this country to run smoothly, giving people the opportunity to align themselves with the political party that best suits their particular ideology. But, in recent years, this system has been hijacked by extremists, both conservative and liberal, causing tension between those who do not align on particular issues.
One of the most hot-button topics in modern politics is any perspective around the Second Amendment. With mass shootings on the rise, both conservatives and liberals have stated their opinions on the right to bear arms — the left wing for the majority vote for increased gun control, and the right wing for the right to carry — two very different stances on one individual topic, yet most people seem to miss the most important part: mass violence is wrong and it should be morally unacceptable. However, our leaders and political extremists immediately turn to polarizing solutions instead of inciting national unity in this time of great sorrow.
Yes, it is important to work toward solutions to these horrific events, but I strongly believe it is even more important to work toward a nation filled with empathetic, understanding people who aren’t always so quick to give judgment, rather than those who point fingers at others who they believe to be at fault.
President Donald Trump has been vocal on many controversial issues in the U.S. political environment, but specifically, he has honed in on the topic of immigration — or in his eyes, the lack of legal immigration. He has been quite outspoken with his “America First” campaign, which is meant to protect American workers and industries, by focusing on six specific areas — a border wall on the U.S.-Mexican southern border, the deportation of undocumented immigrants, restrictions on travel and work visas given to Mexican immigrants, increased screening of refugees, review of the H-1B visa program and the curbing of legal immigration.
Naturally, with his controversial demeanor, he attracted critics, but the nation nearly erupted after stories and videos of families being separated from their loved ones because of undocumented immigration surfaced. Children were separated from their parents with no foreseeable reunion in the near future, forcing young immigrants into the U.S. foster care system. Now, what part of this sounds appealing whatsoever? None of it.
People immigrate to the U.S. with the hope of a better and brighter future, whether they come to this country legally or not. The left believes we should have open borders, and the right believes in tightening them — so how do we find a common ground? How do we, for once, stop bickering with each other and look for beneficial and productive answers?
The answer is morals and heart. No matter religious beliefs, or lack thereof, the U.S. as a nation needs to work toward being decent, loving and understanding citizens. We as citizens need to find a place deep down inside of us that says treating human beings like they are the dirt we walk on is intrinsically wrong.
Once we find our grounding, we can then work together, one nation filled with multiple different perspectives and ideologies, toward a brighter future.
The United States is the land of the free, the home of the brave and a place with opportunities that you cannot find anywhere else. For decades we have stood proud with dignity and pride in the place we call home. It is time we unite as citizens and work toward a safer and more productive future so that our children and grandchildren can once again be proud to be an American.