so what’s the issue?

Last week we asked the following:

Naming no specific persons or parties, why do you believe America is headed on the wrong track?

Your responses — publicly and privately — were fascinating and insightful. I always appreciate even the most private conversation. I admire the one who asks more questions. And I sincerely respect the one who knows they don’t know it all. 

Duly noted, this topic is huge. So let’s dive deeper. Let’s be a little more particular. Let’s get to what’s maybe more tangible and wise to wrestle with.

Let me first again state the added ground rule of omitting references to a specific person or party. Note that the reason for said ground rule is to minimize the tension and emotion often sparked in the specifics, so that we can actually dialogue. When we dialogue, we make progress. When we make progress, solution becomes possible. 

I want to wrestle with specific issues. No judgment. No blame. Just the issue itself.

Without naming a specific person, party, or a political position, what is the greatest issue facing our country today?

It’s a slight tweak on our most recent question in regard to right track/wrong track; that’s a little broader. My desire is to become more distinct.

What one issue, from your perspective, currently plagues our country most?

Climate change?

Government size?

Gun control?

Mental health?

Religious freedom?

Don’t allow me to suggest one issue or another. We each hail from varied perspectives; hence, our perception of what plagues us most will undoubtedly be different. There are so many possible answers.

Please feel free then to suggest any issue. If possible, try to avoid simply stating a political position. For example, believing that foreign threats or terrorism currently plagues our country, I might identify the specific issue as: “Too many terrorists are currently plotting to destroy us.” 

Then, if possible to answer, here’s a tempting sub-question:

Concisely as possible, what needs to be done to solve the issue?

Again, resist the urge to blame another. The goal is progress — not continued finger pointing.

The means, my friends, is respectful dialogue.

Since so often respect is absent and dialogue shuts down — and since so often even the intelligent justify insult — and since so often so much impedes actual solution — let’s focus on the “it” and not the “who.” Let’s focus on the actual issue. When we target the “who,” we often impede progress.

So what’s the issue? What’s the greatest issue facing our country today?