’Cats have forgotten political tolerance

Remember the days when Republicans and Democrats could sit down together openly and discuss ideas respectfully? When they didn’t judge the other side for simply being the other side?
OK, maybe those days never actually existed. But they should have.
I’ve been a little upset since the midterm elections of Nov. 2. First of all, I’m Republican.
I was thrilled with the outcome of the elections. I’ve decided that, in fact, Obama was the right choice for the country back in 2008, even if I didn’t vote for him at the time. Now, however, after two years of a failed Congress and a nose-dive in approval ratings, I think it’s time to give the Republicans a chance.
The reason I’m writing this is because on election night, I stood up for my beliefs, along with a few other brave Republicans that I know, and we were each torn down by various Democrats on campus simply for believing different ideologies.
America is a country based on opposing ideas, based on the principle that the two parties in power must share authority and concede to the other at times. Linfield students, I think, have forgotten this.
Facebook was a realm of hate against Republicans on election night. I even had somebody I know call all Republicans a blanket f-word. I had at least half a dozen people post to my wall, decrying my support for my party.
Why is this? Why do I have to feel attacked simply for thinking differently than others? Why is Linfield so opposed to the minority
party so as to not even accept people who belong to it?
I mean, don’t get me wrong, Republicans aren’t innocent, either. From the moment the 60 new GOP members were elected, they were already assaulting Obama and the Democrats and exclaiming their newfound resolve to repeal the health care bill and other Democratic legislation.
These devisive politics are precisely why this country is so polarized, and I don’t stand for that, either.
Still, I lose respect for Linfield students when I can’t open my mouth without having supposedly open-minded friends derail me. As a whole, we need to become more accepting of the fact that this country has two parties for a reason. A country with one party doesn’t exist on this Earth, unless a dictator rules that country. Do you really want all Republicans wiped off the map and a Democratic dictator to be the only voice of power? I sincerely hope not.
I am Republican. I am proud to be so. I’m proud of my party’s efforts during the last few months, and I look forward to the 112th Congress. If you judge me and see me as less because of this, fine. I probably don’t care enough about your opinion to be fazed, anyway.
Just look in the mirror, and ask yourself this for me: Am I part of the reason America is so divided right now? The answer may surprise you.

Matt Sunderland/Senior reporter
Matt Sunderland can be reached at linfieldreviewmanaging@gmail.com

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