When We Talk to Each Other, the Fighting Stops

“Thou dost protest too much.” -Bill

Trained in engineering and finance, and much less so in literature, I can only guess at the true meaning of this phrase.  It strikes a chord in modern day goings on, though.  Drama, insincerity, and projection all come to mind.

The splits in South Kingstown’s politics are glaring.  Those who cannot dedicate the time to understanding all of our local personalities chalk this up to partisan bickering.  It reinforces the notion that it is a waste of time paying attention too deeply.  And yet, what we have in South Kingstown is not typical Democrat Party and Republican Party squabbles.  In fact there is only one Republican running amongst the 23 candidates who threw that hat in the ring for 12 local offices.

The real split here is in a broader “left” and “right” sense.  On one side is hardened ideologues.  Past, current, and future office holders/seekers on this side have spent years attacking not just Republicans, but anyone who might be friendly with them.  Even neighbors that helped them out in tough times.  They call these voters monstrous and evil.  They hurl vague insults of bigotry and misogyny.  They express shame at any former affiliation they may have had with the “right”.

On the other side, ideologues exist.  But more importantly, there is a coalition of different ideas that can respect each other and share their differences.  That coalition has included Democrats, Independents and Republicans.  We can call it the ”right”, but it would be better to call this union of differing opinions a more complete cross section of South Kingstown.  That coalition has proven the difficulties of breaking the political malaise of many voters when an organized, combative “left” spends its days slinging the proverbial mud.

This election has a new dynamic.  Over 8,000 people have already voted or requested mail ballots.  Nearly 6,000 of those are registered Democrats.  In 2016, roughly 15,000 total votes were cast, roughly 6,000 of those were Democrats.  In other words, the vast majority of voters that have not voted yet lean right.  Most Dems who will vote have already done so.  Collectivist messaging that undercuts the best values and individuals of South Kingstown will have increasingly negative effects as we near November 3.  

To be charitable, many on this supposed “left”, seek power to correct flaws they see in our systems.  But the constant character assassinations, and their underlying disdain for the supposed “right” voters betray a thirst for the power itself.  While accusing opponents of continuous hatred, they ignore any level of introspection.  Those double standards and hypocrisies are the true source of divide in town.

Local politics can be part of a solution to this.  Any voter in town can contact any of these local candidates and truly get to know them.  They are not untouchable like our federal delegation.  Quite literally, when we talk to each other, we stop fighting.

They simply protest too much.

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