In search of compromise


To the Editor:

Having just read Michael Bellissimo’s Letter to the Editor (“No excuse for former chief’s remarks,” July 1), I wanted to reach out to express my concern about Mr. Bellissimo’s angry tone. It seems to me that, far worse than the problem of ignorance noted by Mr. Bellissimo, the inflammatory anger expressed by those on the political left and right poisons the individual mind with hate, preventing it from developing the empathy and balanced judgment a diverse society requires of its citizens to achieve the compromises necessary to sustain a stable democracy. These poisoned minds appear now to be so pervasive in public life that our institutions, most importantly local, state, and federal governments, are increasingly gridlocked in creating and enforcing laws that support democracy’s delicate balance of the community’s interest with the rights of the individual.

As many of us learn the hard way to eliminate from our passions accusatory tones and invective in striving toward greater effectiveness as parents and citizens, I hope that Mr. Bellissmo and others on the political left and right will urgently consider developing healthy strategies for integrating and advancing our communities. By defining our values, identifying our priorities, and opening up to other viewpoints, surely we can find our way through compromise to a rewarding common ground while still being guided by principles important to each of us.

Dusty Burke
Oak Bluffs