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Perspective: Will Impeachment Ruin Your Holidays?

public domain
1870s frontispiece to Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol"

Apparently, any family that survived Thanksgiving intact should be thankful indeed. Media warnings abounded that impeachment disputes threatened family tranquility. One newspaper even urged that political debate be banned except in certain specially equipped "tranquility rooms." Now, ominously, we are careening toward another family holiday with the same grave danger looming. What is going on here? 


First, to the extent that this threat actually exists, it is one more depressing symptom of the hyper-partisanship that rends the fabric of our common culture. We must rebuild the trust that permits disagreement without denunciation. 
More importantly, there is good reason to doubt the very validity of these dire warnings. Almost all measures of public opinion suggest that we are not all obsessed with impeachment. Increasingly, we are a bifurcated, bicoastal culture. Especially in the East, where these events are unfolding, people may indeed be steeped in the impeachment stew. But, in what is termed "flyover country," concerns about jobs, health care, trade, and opioids tend to predominate. This divide between the focus in democratic precincts and the rest of the country poses a real dilemma for Democrats as they drive impeachment. They must straddle two different, divided constituencies. 
So, whether you live in one of the fortunate or the feverish households, perhaps we all should remember the entreaty of Tiny Tim, "God bless us everyone."  


I'm Bob Evans, and that is my perspective. 

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