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Marlon Jones

Gear Up Liaison, Oklahoma Regents for Higher Education: GEAR UP

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"...but I'll defend to the death your right to say it… Really?"

Voltaire once said “I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it” Would I? Really? While maybe not dead, civility is definitely paralyzed in our country, in our communities, and in our homes. At what point did it become easier to antagonize, patronize, and vilify the “other” instead of conducting a reasoned discussion about the perplexing issues that surround us? Well into the machinations of the most recent elections it was being reported by various media sources that Americans were more divided than during any other time in history. There is simply something that does not sound quite right about that statement. Is it possible to have an honest and reasoned discussion? Is it possible to objectively consider an opposing point of view? Do we even agree on what the problems are? Disagreements are inevitable but being disagreeable is not. What do you think?

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    Nov 15 2012: Greg, I think your post touched on the conflict that exists. I agree. I believe that a good bit of discussion is happening behind the scenes. How often have we heard that governing is like sausage making. The results, for the most part, are good [depending on who you ask of course], but the process is not very pleasant. The thing that grinds me is that it appears the sausage making has increasingly more to do with personal attacks and less to do with the feasibility of the issue(s). the reason I appreciate these comments is when I ask myself the question no matter how hard I've try I have not been able to argue the opposing viewpoint with sufficient passion. So there it is...a work in process.

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