Is this something everybody knows and I’m just beginning to notice? We hear a lot about the United States’ political gridlock, and when I get close enough to our legislators to have more than a thirty second sound bite, all of them agree that what distinguishes the current political climate from the recent past is the total breakdown of friendships across the aisle. Moreover, together they are becoming rigid about their ideologies on both the left and the right.

As a result, we are less able to appreciate the moral foundations of those we see as opponents. Seldom does it occur to us that they are pursuing moral ends instead of selfish or misguided interests. We are right and they are wrong. How did we get into such a logjam of rigidity? The oft provided solution to this dilemma is that we should begin to speak more civilly to each other. That might help, but I’m thinking it would be best if we could discover ways to cultivate friendships that allow us to hear those who differ from us. What do you think?