Changing parties not a bad thing

It appears McCarthyism is alive and well in South Dakota. I was shocked to find that South Dakota Citizens for Liberty “outed” GOP lawmakers who once registered as a Democrat.

Silly me, I had thought that lawmakers were acting on behalf of the citizens of South Dakota only to find there was a possibility that some may hold liberal philosophies supporting education for our children and the desire to lift South Dakota to new heights while hiding in plain site within the GOP.

I prefer to believe that a lawmaker who has changed affiliation, whether Democrat, Republican or other, may be the superior lawmaker; one who recognizes change as an important function of democracy and one who has found direction through the experience of life in this wonderful country. If they do not perform well, we can vote them out of office at the next opportunity.

Steve Gray

Spearfish

Lincoln was right about the US

Today, the biggest problem in U.S. politics is that people are so self-righteous and closed-minded that they will not even consider anyone else’s point of view. Just this month, the Pew Research Center states that the gaps between Republicans and Democrats on fundamental political values have grown even larger than ever before.

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In issues related to health care, climate change, immigration, race relations, gun control, etc., people are holding on tightly to what they believe and hurling insults at anyone who contradicts them. I believe we need to start coming together by simply listening to one another. We need to really understand what people are saying; not merely write them off just because they are Republican or Democrat.

I agree with Abraham Lincoln who wisely quoted the biblical words of Jesus as he spoke about the hugely polarizing issue of slavery prior to the Civil War, "If a house is divided against itself, that house will not stand." Differences are inevitable in politics and life in general; it's how we handle those differences that make or break our greatness as a country. Less labeling and more listening are what we need to make America great again.

Sarah Lehmann

Rapid City

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