Andrew Nenow is a wine and viticulture sophomore and Mustang Daily conservative columnist.
The majority of the articles that come out of this column come from current political issues and pertain to those that most well-informed Americans are aware of.
This week, I chose to talk about an issue that has been on my mind ever since I was a kid. This issue, which became apparent to me through watching the news, seeing countless debates and elections and even through watching my family, is what I feel is one of the greatest threats to America.
With a two-party system, politics in the United States are constantly in a battle between the two sides. There are the occasional smaller parties somewhere in the middle or to an extreme left or right, but an overwhelming majority associate as Republican or Democrat. It has been the same since the Federalists and Democratic-Republicans opposed each other in the early history of this nation.
The sad truth about today’s society is that some people take their politics, opinions and political affiliations too seriously. This is a truth that I could never prove to you with statistics, but it is something I have struggled to deal with my entire politically-enlightened life.
Obviously you should not allow yourself to be passive with your beliefs, but it has gotten to the point that people tend to put their political ideals in front of more important aspects of life. I have experienced this fact first hand.
I have one of the most loving and tight-knit families a person could have, and I am very grateful for that. I have more than 20 cousins, and family gatherings of 50 or more people are quite common. We enjoy laughs and are always excited to see each other.
In the midst of this great family love lies a sort of tension that became apparent as I grew up. My family is split down the middle in political ideals; one side is Conservative, while the other is Liberal.
As a result, a lot of trash talking occurs on each side. Some of which comes to a forefront at family gatherings.
The point is that even my family experiences a divide due to a difference of opinion.
This same divide appears to be forming in the fabric of American society. I have seen people express hateful feelings toward others and myself because they simply see the world differently.
To this American, here lies the problem: It appears that people are forgetting the meaning of an opinion and letting their egos get in the way of reality. It’s called an opinion for a reason.
The reality of the universe is that no one is ever going to completely agree on how the world came to be or on whether or not atoms can be broken down any further. This is because there is no way of absolutely determining the answer to these questions, and this can be said about many of the political issues people argue about on a daily basis.
The German philosopher Immanuel Kant called these undeterminable battles antinomies. He and I both believe these antinomies are meant to prove the limits we have as human beings. They are meant to show us there are certain truths that will always have two sides. Two sides, that although completely contradict each other, stand to reason.
This is where we get our opinions. We get them from the fact that we simply see the world in a different way and understand reality from a different aspect.
So why is there so much hate surrounding politics just for believing in something? Are our egos so large that we can’t even let someone believe something beyond what we believe?
As new political issues arise and new discoveries are made, this riff in society will only widen. It is important that people begin to respect the opinions of others and not take it so personally when someone disagrees with you. It’s time to stop putting ourselves under the elephant or donkey banner and come together under the red, white and blue.