Dear America: We Need To Be More United

The pledge of allegiance states that our Republic stands for one indivisible nation, that has liberty and justice for all. However, I still wonder if these words stand true.

Marcos Gouvea, Staff Writer

“I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

The pledge of allegiance states that our Republic stands for one indivisible nation, that has liberty and justice for all. However, I still wonder if these words stand true.

More than ever, we live in a very politically divided world; our country does not escape from that. “The overall share of Americans who express consistently conservative or consistently liberal opinions has doubled over the past two decades from 10% to 21%. And ideological thinking is now much more closely aligned with partisanship than in the past.” (Pew Research Center)

America has consistently been moving to an extremist, polarized, and politically divided scenario. An example would be the 2020 election, where the debates between Joe Biden and Donald Trump looked more like an insult competition rather than discussing issues and the solutions they could offer. At the end of the election, there was the tragic Capitol Insurrection, where a violent threat to democracy became another Left Wing vs. Right-Wing topic.

Political polarization happens due to political parties becoming aligned with certain races and ideological and religious beliefs. “Why has the U.S. become so much more polarized? Shapiro said it may be partly because, since the 1970s, major political parties have become increasingly aligned with certain ideologies, races, and religious identities. For example, Republicans are now more likely to be religious, while Democrats are more likely to be secular.” (Brown)

Politicians use these beliefs and ideologies to control Americans, using us as a building block to reach their power, as we grow more divided. 

The deputy sheriffs, the soldiers, the governors get paid/ And the marshals and cops get the same/ But the poor white man’s used in the hands of them all like a tool/ He’s taught in his school/ From the start by the rule/ That the laws are with him/ To protect his white skin/ To keep up his hate/ So he never thinks straight/ ‘Bout the shape that he’s in/ But it ain’t him to blame/ He’s only a pawn in their game” (Only A Pawn In Their Game – Bob Dylan)

This song was written in 1964 as a Civil Rights protest song. It talks about how white politicians would heat the angry flame of racism on white Americans, using them, only because it served their purpose to remain in power.

Unfortunately, political polarization is not only an American issue, it affects the whole world. Since America is the role-model to multiple countries throughout the world, and certain political parties from different countries “team-up” it turns into a global issue. “Polarization is tearing at the seams of democracies around the world, from Brazil and India to Poland and Turkey. It isn’t just an American illness; it’s a global one.” (Carnegie)

As stated previously, Americans tend to pick a side and strictly follow that party’s beliefs instead of thinking about their stance on each topic. “As a result, Mason argues, Americans no longer juggle several, potentially conflicting group identities; they associate with one, all-encompassing group, which confers what she calls a ‘mega-identity.’” (The New Yorker)

This polarization separates our society, clouding our better judgment and not allowing us to see through each other’s eyes. Truly, if we cannot come to our senses and understand each other’s differences, we cannot call ourselves a Democracy.

As a young American, representing the so-called future of the country, I have but only one request in hopes for a better prospect of the future–Dear America: We Need To Be More United!