Can we get unanimous agreement on anything?


Iíve been thinking a lot about people recently. More specifically, about different opinions, where lines are drawn, and whether or not we can even create a way to have actual conversations again. You know, meaningful conversations built upon respect and accountability. Conversations where we actually listen to another personís thoughts.

And, Iím worried.

Really. I wonder if itís possible because of how emotional and stubborn people have become.

Have you ever eaten in a Five Guys? Great burgers. (Actually, brilliant burgers. Fries are ok. I tend to prefer them a bit crispier than they serve, but they taste pretty good. The wonderful part of their service plan is that they do not skimp on the fries.)

They also have peanuts in their stores. Boxes upon boxes, serve yourself, break the shells, peanuts. If you have a nut allergy, itís not a stretch at all to say you likely donít frequent Five Guys.

Thatís just a simple example of where things can go off the rails in all of us getting along. Some people would argue Five Guys doesnít need to serve the peanuts, and could step into positive customer relations by dropping them. Others would contend itís part of the charm, they love the peanuts, and that there are plenty of other options for burgers out there.

Regardless of the merits of these argumentsÖ and any others you might want to suggestÖ we have a direction for this essay: people are unlikely to reach a complete, one hundred percent, perfectly unanimous agreement on anything. Wonít happen. And if we canít agree on peanuts in a burger joint, I feel safe saying there will be issues on more serious scenarios.

Letís consider guns.

(WhoaÖ whoaÖ easy. Knew we were making a bigger jump into serious than you expected. Itís a conversation about guns. And a basic one at that. No creation of laws. Weíre just talking.)

There actually is a middle ground when it comes to guns. I know, because thatís where I reside.

I believe that things in our current day are much different than they were two hundred or three hundred or four hundred years ago on the lands that now assemble as the United States. Guns were effectively a necessity. For protection. For hunting. For doing so many things that either donít exist as needs and threats any more, or are simply not a part of daily life for most people.

I also believe that there are some people that have incredible respect for wildlife and the land, and hunt to provide. I believe that there are ways people enjoy the use of guns, feel secure because of the possession of guns, and overall that the right to own them is something that should be allowed.

I donít believe that the reasons for protecting the right to bear arms are the same today as they were in 1791. And, I donít believe in eliminating rights to own guns.

Again, for purposes of this essay, there is absolutely no way that we will ever reach a unanimous agreement on the subject. Plus, I am not trying to wade down into the deeper issues and ideas involved. Which are important and many.

The idea behind this essay is to essentially state that there rarely is a perfect opinion, a scenario where right is absolute. In many ways, the idea of a middle ground is more important than ever. In that median between two sides, there should be a respect for all opinions.

Yes, some are not, for lack of a better phrase, valid. There are moments when something is wrong. Unfortunately, wrong implies that there is a right. And often, right will not allow every opinion to gather under its umbrella.

All of which is a shame. Because if we arenít going to be able to have a conversation, it possible none of us will be satisfied with the results.


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