Home › Forums › COVID-19 Pandemic: Bearing Witness, Telling our Story › A Decline in Polarization › Thoughts by Peter Coleman. Share your insights as a DNP colleague › Reply To: Thoughts by Peter Coleman. Share your insights as a DNP colleague
Sadly, I think the COVID 19 pandemic has only increased polarization. Wearing masks is the left’s version of the MAGA hat, a clear indicator of where a person falls on the political spectrum. Most conservatives reject all attempts at controlling the virus in favor of personal freedom. Blue states such as California are just finally lifting outdoor mask requirements, while red states such as Texas and Florida abandoned all restrictions and mandates a long time ago. It’s sad that even the approach to overcoming a pandemic has America divided. Policy should be based on data, however both sides are guilty of manipulating “the science” and cherry-picking data to support their own stance. I feel strongly that the silencing of dissenting voices, censoring and squashing any criticism of the vaccine or mandates is most definitely not science. The very foundation of science is lively debate, presenting hypotheses, questioning, and exploring with your peers until the available data supports one stance or the other. No one person can claim to be “the science” while shutting down or mocking any and all dissenting voices.
I believe that the “political shock wave” scenario is unfolding before our eyes. Parents who were lifelong Democrats are now flocking toward the Republican party, enraged that the schools in their liberal cities were closed far longer than the schools in conservative districts. They are enraged that their children are being forced to wear masks, while schools in red states lifted mask mandates long ago with no negative outcomes. The trucker convoy in Canada saw uncommon alliances of truckers and hippies, people of all races, old and young people, all united in their opposition to vaccine mandates. Many people have abandoned left or right labels, seeing the merits of thinking independently. The pandemic shook up many people’s political ideology, and the repercussions are still playing out.