I have seen many comments on social media emphasizing the intolerance of the left, and I have seen people rightly point out when certain acts are outrageous, as well as divulge inconsistencies in the arguments of some people on the left. However, while many conservatives rightly point out these things in order to analyze what is good, bad, and otherwise, I have also seen many jump to rudeness and at times, hatred. There is a line between ignoring political correctness and being needlessly rude.
With this in mind, I want to remind conservatives that having a peaceful transition come January 20, is a two-way street.
People who voted for Clinton are allowed to be sad that they lost without being called crybabies. People who were #NeverTrump who want to partake in a peaceful transition are allowed to do so. If you want there to be a peaceful transition, you need to allow the people who want to participate to do so. And you need to do it without name calling or starting fisticuffs and brouhahas. On January 20, if you let the people who voted differently than you did join you, you can help the peaceful transition.
Moving forward as a party of conservatives, it is important to remember that if we set out to blame the other party, we should make sure that we aren’t guilty of the very thing that we at fighting against. When we argue with liberals when they boycott and protest conservative speakers, when we call them out for not defending freedom of speech, when we point out their intolerance when they only allow one idea; we must not fight back by doing the same. If we want liberals to be tolerant of conservative ideas, name-calling and refusing to listen and converse with them will not make it better. This does not mean we need to endorse or even accept ideas that are wrong, but we should at least be willing to listen.
Many conservative principles are founded upon the idea that competition is good. Competition of ideas leads to a better outcome; it lets us see what works best and what doesn’t. If we offer only our own ideas, with presumptions of complete flawlessness, then we will never confront the flaws in our plans. Every plan has a flaw, some more than others. As conservatives moving forward, we need to remember this.
As Republicans, we control two out of three branches of government. We are the political majority. But, if we become arrogant in our own ideas, the amount of success that comes out of the next four years may only reach the same level of successful laws as the past eight.
Furthermore, we must not only remember to listen to the opposing party, but also the fragments that exist in our own. Despite the sea of red in DC, our party is a hot mess. We have in some cases not only different solutions to the same issue, but completely different perspectives. If we want to accomplish success for the people, we need to listen to the ideas of others, and compromise, not only with people outside of our party, but also the more difficult task of compromising with the people within our own party.
Conservatives who are not in congress or working in politics need to remember to do the same. On your campus, riots and tantrums only work to gain media attention. It is the successful competition of ideas that make a change. Extreme media presence may help elect a president once every 45th president, but the implementation of ideas is what changes the course of history.
So, fight for your beliefs. Stand up for what is right. But do not forget, that like the liberals, you too are flawed. Your ideas may be good, but they cannot be perfected without having at least a second opinion.
We must remember that a peaceful transition is a two-way street. If we only seek to point out the flaws in others and the achievements of ourselves, the transition will be far from peaceful, and our party will be one step closer to an endless pit of disarray.