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Agree to disagree

Photo credit: Wonderopolis

Photo credit: Wonderopolis

By Rory Angott, Staff Reporter

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My great grandma was born in a world where she couldn’t vote. It was November of 1914, a few months after the start of World War I. At the time it was just “The Great War” — the war that would end all wars.

Well fast forward 25 years. She learned that they were wrong, it was World War II at this point and she had voted in her first presidential election. Her side didn’t win, FDR did, but she maintained what she called respect. People, she said, didn’t try to shut down every opposing view, they saw them as one of the many beauties of a free society.

Although we, in the futuristic year of 2017, may believe we lived through a dangerously polarizing election — and we did — it was nothing compared to 1960. JFK versus the now infamous Richard Nixon. It turned into not just an election but an election that revolved around the issue of segregation.

I called her and she told me she felt when Nixon lost, she said that she felt like an American. She didn’t feel the need to go out and berate all of her Kennedy supporting neighbors. To her they were just as much an American as she was. The only difference was their perspective of what would benefit America as a whole.

Today she wishes she voted for Kennedy. I think that the majoity of us wish that we would, as a society, just admit our mistakes. We wish that we would just live and learn.

She grew up in a time where people would learn from their mistakes, much more importantly they admitted that sometimes they’re wrong. She said that today people just fight. As a kid who’s only been on this planet for the millisecond that is 15 years, she’s right.

I believe that kneeling during the national anthem is not disrespectful. You might believe the opposite. That’s okay. Neither of us are right.

I believe that kneeling during the national anthem is not disrespectful. You might believe the opposite. That’s okay. Neither of us are right.”

I guess the point I’m trying to make is that just because a belief is different, just because it isn’t yours, it doesn’t make it wrong. Now, don’t get me wrong, fact based opinions are always better than those that are not. But the idea of what a is fact is subjective.

One person might think that their religion is a fact, and they might use that to justify their opinion. They retain that right.

Another person might not use religion to justify their beliefs. They might use science or really whatever may be considered a proven fact. They retain that right.

That’s the type of world my great grandma wants to live in. I’m sure that if you asked yours the same questions I asked mine you would get answers that are along the same lines.

She’s lived a life that is 103 years long and she told me, right before she hung up the phone, that if you disagree with something stand up for what you believe. Always stand up for what you believe in. But never, never tell someone their belief is wrong just because you think it’s bad. They don’t have to think the same.

She said that she doesn’t like the world she’s going to be leaving but that she trusts me and my generation to be the people who bring back the idea of respect she grew up with.

So just be human. Express your opinions. Admit that, sometimes, you’re wrong. Respect people. Respect their opinions.

Disagree, agree — whatever. But in the end, can we all just settle down and agree to disagree?

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The student news site of Grosse Pointe North High School.                               707 Vernier Rd., Grosse Pointe Woods, MI 48236
Agree to disagree