How We Discuss Issues at Bearing Drift

So interesting to see “Progressive” Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly……

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 14, 2019

“We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty.” -Edward R. Murrow, CBS newsman, March 9, 1954

On Monday the writers at Bearing Drift had a discussion that lasted throughout the day and centered on what Donald Trump had tweeted about four U.S. Congresswomen of color.

So far that discussion has generated three posts from varied points of view (four if you include this one) because here at Bearing Drift we discuss. We talk. We present facts. If we disagree, it’s in a civil way amongst colleagues. And then we write.

We are a big tent at Bearing Drift. We look beyond the bubble that has trapped much of the Republican Party in recent years. We search for answers, and discuss with our colleagues and those knowledgeable on the issues. We explore outside the box. Because, as we all know, one size Republican does not fit all, just as one size conservative does not fit all. We do not walk lock-step with those perceptions.

So when our articles are published and posted on Facebook, it is predictable that the anti-issue and anti-Bearing Drift commenters will show up. That’s fine; we like engagement and discussion.

However, disagreeing with someone should not include insults and personal attacks. The problem is many, sometimes most, negative commenters have absolutely no interest in discussion. Their interest is only in slamming the writer and the article, and some lack context that makes one question whether they even read beyond the headline.

Our writers have been called communist enablers and stupid. They have been taunted. We often hear that we are now Democrats and liberals. I have good friends who are Democrats and liberals; indeed, one of our writers crossed into the Democratic party when Donald Trump became president. It seems obvious those commenters don’t realize how close-minded their name-calling makes them look. Then there are the anonymous keyboard jockeys who do not operate in the light of day.

Yesterday’s discussion about Trump’s tweets was an interesting, deep dive into the issues surrounding that public message from the President of the United States. Let’s say that again: the President of the United States. You can love him or you can hate him, but there is a protocol to being the leader of the free world. In my opinion, making Twitter your personal playground to publicly bully the very people you represent and in this case work with in Congress is not the role of the President of the United States.

So I will take this moment to suggest that an educated debate is far more effective than one- or two-line slams that sometimes devolve into personal insults and four-letter words. Some argue that the writer’s information is incorrect. Here is a suggestion to commenters: cite your source. If you want to prove your point against what the author wrote, leave a link to prove what you are saying. It better backs your argument to provide facts.

It is disappointing that the thoughtful observers mostly avoid these battle zones but I don’t blame them. I understand not wanting to wade into the mud but at the same time it does make one wonder if the thinkers could raise the level of discussion to higher ground. These are defining, perhaps even historical, moments for the Republican Party, conservatives, and the religious community.

We are proud of our open-minded Bearing Drift writers who are willing to face the barbs and publicly discuss issues of the day.

“I’ve spoken of the shining city all my political life, but I don’t know if I ever quite communicated what I saw when I said it. But in my mind, it was a tall proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, wind swept, God blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace – a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity, and if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors, and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here.” -President Ronald Reagan’s Farewell Speech, January 12, 1989

You may be interested in these thoughtful articles from the authors who stirred the hornets nest of angry commenters:

What Silence Sounds Like by Kristina Nohe
What on Earth Happened to the Republican Party? by D.J. McGuire
Identity Politics Isn’t Racism, But It’s Just As Bad by Steven Brodie Tucker

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