Stop crying for “unity,” Americans want liberty


Gwynith Hayden

The American flag, a symbol which some Americans have deemed too controversial.

I was sitting on an airplane, watching the rest of the people board. A man walked by carrying a little girl, probably around five years old. “That lady was really nice,” the girl said, referring to the flight attendant. “It’s amazing that most people are really nice!”

There was a chuckle from the passengers around us, but it was a striking moment to me. We have somehow moved away from this simple idea that was so obvious to the little girl: most people are really nice.

There is so much hatred and division in our day and age. The sad part is, people are doing this to themselves. They insist on dividing themselves into categories based on politics, race, class, and gender. The more categories we add on, the further we get from the simple reality that we are all human beings, and more importantly, that we are all children of God.

Depending on what news sources you read, you have likely heard statements bashing one political party or the other. “Remember what they did” and “give no quarter” have become the mantra of people on both sides of the aisle. As the research continues to show, democrats and republicans are only growing more and more distant in their ideals and politics.

“Unity” sounds good on paper, but I think it is a fair assessment to say that it is not a realistic goal for our country now. In paraphrase of a statement by Megyn Kelly, maybe liberty, not unity, should be the message of today. The liberty to live by your moral compass, the liberty to speak and discuss freely, and, most importantly, the liberty to disagree without disrespect. The good news is there is a growing movement of people who seek to live out liberty. There are people who find themselves tired of the lies spun by the media, by big tech, and by politicians.

The more radical traditional media becomes, the more their viewers plummet. Most people are really nice, and most people don’t want to be yelled at by journalists who have little or no grounding in reality.

People are turning to newer forms of media, such as YouTube or podcasts. It doesn’t seem a coincidence to me that some of the most popular podcasts are those that are the most moderate, whether they lean center-right or center-left.

Americans are tired of hearing the lies, and tired of living them. Maybe at the end of the day all we want is liberty, and to argue for our beliefs without offending or being offended.

Maybe it’s time for a new mantra: liberty for all, and disagreement without offense.