“In the practice of tolerance, one’s enemy is the best teacher.”- Dalai Lama
As Americans we are uniquely different than many other nations because we live in a society that is heterogeneous. We should not look at the differences in others as an opportunity to advocate their inferiority, but, instead, we should look at differences in others as an opportunity to learn and understand other’s perspective so that we can make clear judgment on what we see as “right” and “wrong”.
At times it may seem that those who oppose our viewpoints are our adversaries, but it is important to remember that one of the fundamental principles of a democratic republic is the presence of opposition. Without a balanced opposition there would be a monopoly of power and narrow-mindedness that may easily lead to the persecution of minority groups.
Narrow-mindedness is what provoked the killing of African-Americans by the KKK, the genocide of the Jews in Germany, and it continues to fuel the constant clash between Israel and Palestine. A narrowed minded person lacks the capacity to learn new ideas, creating a blind partisanship that leads to incompetence.
Whether you are conservative or liberal, Republican or Democrat, atheist or theist we should remind ourselves we are still bound together as Americans, and more specifically, as Tar Heels. We should always strive to protect each other’s unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, no matter how different our opinions may be.