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OpEdNews Op Eds    H1'ed 10/18/12

America: Caught in the Throes of an Escalating "UnCivil War"

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Watching what's going on in America today is like reliving the years preceding the destructive Civil War of the 1860's in which the seething anger and great dissension between opposing factions finally reached a boiling point and erupted into extreme violence. It's as if that dissension that tore America apart became embedded in this nation's psyche and has now resurfaced in this society.

 

What we may be experiencing is today's version of that massive conflict that, in times past, was ignited by irreconcilable differences between the North and the South. While bullets and bombs are not being used in this societal conflict there are other forms of destructive weapons that are causing great turmoil in this country; weapons that individuals use against each other such as extreme anger, hatred, obstruction, suppression, manipulation, deceit, deception and treachery.

 

It's the North vs. the South all over again. Just look at a map that depicts the state by state electoral situation in this country. The Democratic Blue States, largely in the North and the East, plus California, and the Republican Red States in the South and the West, have completely opposite ideologies and agendas and their politicians agree on virtually nothing. To illustrate the situation let's slightly alter a famous quote from a poem by Rudyard Kipling: "North is North and South is South, and never the twain shall meet." What we have are two separate America's where there is no middle or common ground but, rather, a monumental clash of political and social ideology.

 

But the irreconcilable differences that exist between people in America today are not just between the North and the South; they involve far more than that as they encompasses this entire nation and its people.

 

This Uncivil War includes the masters of Wall Street and the ultra rich versus Main Street, the middle class and those who have been relegated to the lower levels of the income spectrum. Some characterize this conflict as being between the 1% and the 99%. Those at the top want more and more wealth and control while those below them simply want to have decent jobs and not have to struggle to survive. Those at the top are hard at work suppressing and controlling those below them by every means at their disposal.

 

Various factions and segments of America seem to be out of sync, on totally different frequencies, marching to beat of different drummers. There is nothing wrong with strong opinions and having a mind of your own. That's a healthy condition if the exchange of opposing viewpoints leads to a consensus that creates good conditions for everyone; but in America today a very divisive atmosphere has evolved in which extreme, unrelenting positions cause such dissension that it prevents anything of real substance to be accomplished. The U.S. Congress is the perfect living example of that as it continues to remain in a state of complete gridlock and inability to function.

 

But let's get right to the biggest divide and conflict that I believe exists in America today and seems to be the root cause of most of our critical problems. Watching the direction in which this nation is rapidly moving, it seems to me that the large majority of Americans fall into either one of two separate categories which form the basis for how they lead their lives and how they interact with their fellow Americans. Of course, there are those who are sort of in between and don't fit into either group but they are not relevant to this particular discussion.

 

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Michael Payne is an independent, progressive activist. His writings deal with social, economic, political and foreign policy issues. He is a featured writer on OpEdNews and Nation of Change and his articles have appeared on many other websites (more...)
 

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