Are we really as stupid in this country as the main stream media make us seem to be?
After more than two and a quarter centuries, are Americans really as clueless about their country as we seem to be listening to ourselves every night on television? Are we really as shockingly naive about America as we seem to be in the comment threads of so many political web pages and call in programs?
Do we not know that…..that weâ€™re ALL here in America?
All of us.
Do Christians really not know that there are approaching 20% of Americans who claim no religious faith at all?
Do the irreligious and the atheists really not know that 60% of Americans are religious, and about 40% of Americans are religious enough to go to a religious service once a week?
Are reporters really amazed that Pentecostals- like Governor Palin- pray with intensity, talk about the devil, ask God to do miracles and generally have a vital and visible Christian experience?
Do we actually have religion reporters in America who are stunned to hear that Roman Catholics believe in the teachings of the church, arenâ€™t seeking to overthrow the pope, donâ€™t plan to ordain women priests and arenâ€™t reinventing Christianity according to the latest polls?
Do the media actually not understand that evangelicals of every type are overwhelmingly pro-life, anti-feminist and anti-gay marriage? Do they not know that evangelicals believe they have the truth in the Bible and that Jesus is the way to heaven?
Do Christians not know that a substantial chunk of their own numbers arenâ€™t pro-life, are pro-feminism and promote gay marriage? Yes, there are Christians who are Democrats!
Are there really people out there who donâ€™t know that America is almost evenly split in many places between conservatives and progressives? And that some Americans havenâ€™t made up their minds what they are and probably wonâ€™t any time soon.
Is someone actually surprised that the diversity in our country includes families with four children who keep the fifth one, even when he has Downâ€™s Syndrome?
Is someone actually surprised that somewhere on some university campus thereâ€™s someone who will advocate the aborting of Down Syndrome children as a moral obligation?
Are there people who actually think every conservative agrees with Rush Limbaugh or Bill Oâ€™Reilly?
Are there people who believe that every liberal agrees with Al Franken or Chris Matthews?
I know there are some people who still havenâ€™t gotten ahold of racial and cultural diversity in America, but isnâ€™t it about time they did?â€¨
American is no longer white and black, Protestant and Catholic, Democrats and Republicans. It is far more diverse than any two options can ever describe.
Weâ€™re not divided into the good guys and the bad guys. Every election isnâ€™t about the triumph of Christian civilization or the end all we believe and hold dear.
Weâ€™re a quilt of diverse culture, a stew of diverse politics, an almost endless collection of points of view and the factors that make us see the world differently.
We canâ€™t make everyone else shut up, change their minds or go away.
Writing a great column, speech, blog post or sermon doesnâ€™t end the discussion. Publishing a book or doing an exposeâ€™ on CNN doesnâ€™t end the competing opinions on everything.
Yelling at the television wonâ€™t change anything. Surrounding yourself with people who agree with you, withdrawing to a homeschool and forming your own church wonâ€™t take away the diversity of America.
At Columbia U, Iranian President Ahmadinejad could say there are no gays in Iran, and smile as if saying makes it so. In America, we should know better than that kind of nonsense.
Thereâ€™s no use in imagining that we are all going to be Obama supporters or McCain supporters, Christians or secularists, atheists or superstitious simpletons.
Some of the best and worst people in the country have beliefs exactly like you. Some of the best and worst people in this country are completely different from you. And theyâ€™re all here.
Weâ€™re all here. All the big, diverse, irreconcilable mess of us. And we arenâ€™t going to move away or go away. Arguments wonâ€™t make us vaporize. Being witty and snarky wonâ€™t change people and their beliefs. Big conventions and Youtube videos wonâ€™t end the discussion. Million dollar ads arenâ€™t making the world into your mirror.
America IS diversity. Thatâ€™s our contribution to history.
We know the other guy is there. The other guy is us. All of us. We are a diverse nation that doesnâ€™t kill the other half of the country every four years. We hand over the keys to the White House and the nuclear bombs to the other party, and we all go back to work.
We defend the other personâ€™s right to be different, even if it deeply offends us.
We are that diversity, and we accept it as being the very soul of America.
So could we stop talking to one another as if the loudest, angriest, most outraged will suddenly get the power to make everyone else change their mind, change their politics or just go away? Can we stop acting as if the rest of America is an illusion to be chased away with political discourse turned up to eleven?
Weâ€™re all here, and thatâ€™s what America is all about.