Gregory Greenleaf’s Maine Compass article from Jan. 19 has inspired me to write and comment. A lifelong Red Sox fan, he struck a nerve, and yet he made me realize that lately we live in a world where increasingly you are only around people who think like you.

I have been trying to find ways to understand and empathize with people who think differently than I do. While I live and die with the fortunes of the Sox, I have a number of Yankee friends who like to tease me when the Yankees are doing well. That they have chosen to root for “the evil empire” is generally a product of their upbringing and often geography or just a different taste in baseball.  We are still able to find plenty of common ground and I enjoy their friendship.

I look at the way politics are going and I believe many people have forgotten that basic concept of civil discourse that is so fundamental to our democracy. It’s my way or the highway.

Everyone has different beliefs, but in the end we are all living in this country and world together. Teaching to hate doesn’t make life better.

Baseball is better with a Yankee/Red Sox rivalry. The assumption that if you are from one political party or another that you are a bad person is just destructive. Finding ways to solve problems together or discuss issues without hating the other person is much more productive.

Go Red Sox!

 

Rich Howard

Monmouth

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