Dan Rather: Addressing a Divided America

Cade Smith, Editor

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It’s common knowledge that the political status of America is now in a sharp state of division. The media coverage of growing protests and civil disputes over the direction of America displays tension among differing ideologies, a huge problem for an increasingly diverse nation.  

Dan Rather, a long-time journalist and former news anchor of CBS Evening News, addressed this division at a discussion I attended at the War Memorial Auditorium in Nashville. Promoting his new book “What Unites Us,” Rather uses his extensive press background to give his opinion on President Trump and the controversy that is helping in America’s division. Focusing on the divide, Rather criticized Trump’s use of “us against them” politics in regard to the Republican Party and, to an extent, conservatism as a whole, saying this sort of action does nothing but promote an anti diversity mindset.

Although sharing his disfavor for the current president, Rather made clear his goal for the talk with an idea he repeated a couple of times: “No leader can ever be as strong as the American people as a whole.” Warning against detachment, Rather stressed the importance of looking deeper into issues instead of stopping at just an initial, hostile judgment.

Amongst the crowd, I was most definitely one of the few individuals under 40 years old. Despite this, I still felt like the message coming from Rather was most relevant to the future of America. While what is going on in the White House seems distant to us now, do we really want to inherit a United States torn by difference?

As citizens, we must look past the differences that separate us, instead reminding ourselves that the principles of freedom and liberty that this country was found on is, in the end, what unites us.

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