Letter: Which community do we want for our children?
The history of mankind has demonstrated a remarkable tendency to confront the chaos of our world by creating communities characterized by fear. To be sure, the chaos of our existence forces us to experience death and all the associated paths that lead to death. The COVID-19 pandemic is just the latest example of communities small and large responding to the chaos with fear. While we could explore the responses of our national or state governments and observe the fear motive, let’s examine a different theme that is surfacing in the local elections of the Eagle County School Board.
One of the chief failures of communities that respond to chaos with fear is communication. I would invite you to consider that the election of five school board members is highlighting communication as the most important difference between the “slates” running for these positions.
One slate is running with a sense of fear. How can you tell? The candidates and their followers are resorting to ad hominem attacks, preposterously suggesting the opposition are racists, religious zealots, and right-wing radicals instead of engaging with ideas that challenge their worldview. This conveys an arrogance that impedes communication and unnecessarily furthers the divide that naturally exists between people who disagree.
On the other hand, mankind has always had the choice to respond to the chaos of the world by creating communities of faith. I’m not speaking of a specific religious faith, but of a belief that we can create communities that believe in each other — and for each other. The goal of these communities isn’t uniformity — where everyone has to believe the same thing — but unity that embraces not just the diversity of intersectionality, but also the unity that can come from opposing views respecting the process and value of synthesis that comes in relationship with one another.
So, once again, this community has a choice to make. Do you want to create a community characterized by fear that cancels out the views of the opposition or do you want to create a community characterized by faith that each person brings a valuable insight that can contribute to a better learning environment for the children?
Andrew Keiser, School Board Candidate, District A