This is not meant in any way, mind you, to commingle the affairs of Church and State. God knows there has been too much of that going on for years now.
But in this season of spiritual, cultural and historical reflection for so many believers in Judaic-Christian values and traditions - and at what is a combined sociopolitical and economic crossroads for so many other Americans, regardless of religious belief or persuasion - there is the strong sense that WE, as One United States Of America, as One People, need to reinvent the way in which we agree to disagree, reach consensus, and move forward as a nation.
Regardless of one's political leaning or party affiliation; irrespective of how large a role one thinks our federal government should play in establishing and maintaining social and economic equity; no matter how one feels about the "right and wrong" sides of divisive social issues like Abortion and Gay Rights - unless one is hopelessly blinded by anger, it is plain to see that the politics of nastiness is getting us nowhere, except more deeply divided and dysfunctional.
Their principles were born out of a sense of the Civic - the duties and obligations of citizens belonging to a community. And their ideals took root and ultimately bore fruit in the soil of Civility - politeness that results from observing social conventions.
That's not to suggest that our participatory American Democracy didn't also emerge out of ardent disagreement and debate - it did. That's an honorable national political tradition. So too, is the capacity and the will to move beyond our disagreements, and forge ahead.
Disagreement and debate have too often and for too long deteriorated into political paralysis.
It's time to demand the resurrection of a more Civic & Civil brand of American political discourse.
To bring this issue to life, take a look at the exclusive new video below, a few quick but memorable minutes of gripping insight from the eminent educator, historian, author and media commentator, Dr. Robert P. Watson, Coordinator Of American Studies at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida.