July 29, 2020 11:19:01 AM
Dismisses politically broad characterizations
In a recent letter, I tried to describe what makes Columbus and my neighborhood feel like where I belong. I believe our neighborly cohesiveness developed because we focus on what brings us together rather than on where we differ.
I only wish that some of our national leaders would do the same. Recently, Devin Nunes (R-CA) said on Fox News that Democrats "hate white people." What?! I'm a Democrat who does not hate anyone. I know, like, and respect a significant number of white people. None of my Democratic friends and acquaintances has ever done or said anything to support Nunes' ridiculous claim.
Unlike Nunes, I would never accuse those with whom I disagree of hating a group or not loving their country -- because I do not believe it to be true.
It is sad that I mention Nunes before John Lewis (D-GA) whose death and funeral this past week revived strong memories of the Civil Rights movement and of those activists who made their stand no matter how unpopular. Unlike Nunes, whose principles I question, civil rights activists like Lewis did not get interviews on Fox News -- instead, they got beaten, sometimes got their skulls fractured.
Let me expand what I said in my neighborhood letter. I care about my neighbors because they are good people -- their politics and religion, skin color has nothing to do with it. This is not a special rule for my neighbors -- it applies to everyone.
Hate our country? Hate the people that make it up? Absurd. I would probably sleep better if I did not care so much! As a perfectionist, I have never seen anything that I did not think could be improved -- my own life, in particular; no matter how it seems at the time. I view my citizenship and my country the same way.
So, let me be clear. I love my country. I never want to live anywhere else. So did John Lewis and, precisely because of that, he pushed ceaselessly to be part of the national conversation. That is all any of us are aiming for when we criticize -- Republican or Democrat.
We recognize that we do not have all the answers for how best to move forward. We just want to be part of the process that seeks to find them. Is that not what this country is supposed to be all about?!
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