Political polarization: The tension between Republicans and Democrats

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Colin Lloyd via Unsplash

The political unrest at a Trump rally where police were called to manage the crowd.

Laci Roberts, Copy Editor

As politics have become increasingly polarized in recent years, Republicans and Democrats have harsh feelings towards each other. Emotion has flooded the political playing field as the feud between parties has increased through theatrical figures.  

In today’s world, politics have become a black and white subject, a person is either a Democrat or Republican with no gray space in between. Healthy discussion between political parties has been lost as tensions have begun to rise — there is no such thing as sharing ideas from both the left and the right. Controversial topics such as the COVID-19 pandemic, gun rights, taxation of the upper class and defense causing significant tension  in heated discussions. Many people stand strongly with their political beliefs and refuse to change their minds.  

An example of the polarization of politics is the ideation behind the statement “guns don’t kill people, people do.” Democrats generally believe that automatic weapons should be banned in hopes of limiting violence, however,  Republicans usually  believe in the full extent of the second amendment, the right to bear arms. On both sides, people agree to hate the other. 

Senior Ethan Stigler believes that tension between parties stems from a lack of middle ground in political ideas. “There is tension between the two [parties] because of the lack of middle ground. In political discussion, if a middle ground be found, healthy discussion be achieved,” he said. 

Sophomore Shelby Juehring aligns with the Democratic Party and believes that people are the root of the polarization of politics. “People have very strong differing opinions. People always think that they are right and do not listen to the other side,” she said. 

In some situations there is no compromise because people believe that they are right no matter what the side states. People are not willing to change their ideas. Without an open mind people do not come to learn. 

Sophomore Noah Kidwell believes that the bias of the media has ties to people’s political opinions. “I believe that the media shapes how people see things, especially politically. Nowadays it is very hard to find any sort of media that is not biased in any way,” stated Kidwell. 

68% of people learn most of their information from the media. With political bias being connected to the way that people get their information, the discussion of politics is heated due to outside influences like the external information that they have received.  

One of the many topics that can be heated between parties is masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Democrats believe that masks are helpful and necessary to prevent the spread. Republicans counteract that claim by Democrats’ belief of “my body my choice,” which is generally used in response to abortion. 

At the end of the day politics have always been an opinion filled discussion. In recent times, the discussion of politics has been a blood bath between parties. Democrats hate Republicans and Republicans hate Democrats. Moving forward, maybe the middle ground of political issues can be found.