There are multiple topics being discussed when friends gather in person or weigh in on social media. It’s difficult to discern whether some things are OK to say. And if you lean one way, opposite of another person, is it OK to reconsider after discussion and reflection? And do you dare take the humble approach and admit a change of opinion?

We may “agree to disagree.” That’s possibly true in some situations but probably not in politics and pandemics from what I’ve experienced. It should be OK but it’s not often sincere when stated.

I believe it’s OK to “be OK” with changing your mind. And if you do that quietly, that’s fine too. Suppose you and your family or friends are against getting vaccinated but after seeing the numbers of hospitalizations and deaths related to the unvaccinated, you want the vaccine. Just do it. You aren’t required to tell anyone. However, you might save the life of someone you know if you openly advocate for getting protected and you help change someone’s mind.

I hear people say that requiring proof of vaccination is taking freedom. I disagree. Proof of vaccination during a pandemic will allow more freedom: freedom to travel, work, attend school and socialize. It will keep businesses open. It’s not like vaccines are a brand-new concept. We’ve carried on after the many other vaccines required for public health safety.

Now, is it OK to change your mind about politicians you’ve supported but no longer feel you can? That’s a yes.

Let’s say, for instance that you’ve been a Trump enthusiast since day one. You are now in the minority of Americans as proven by the 2020 election. Do you ever wonder if you chose well? It’s OK to change your mind and disagree with his behaviors. It’s perfectly OK to break away. Just do it. And like the vaccine do so quietly if you must; or be brave and openly advocate for the freedom to go against your friend’s opinion or your party.

If you are a Trump loyalist didn’t it give you some anxiety to hear him say during a rally prior to the election that he “planned to stay four more years in the White House and maybe beyond?” Doesn’t that statement show he doesn’t honor the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution, ratified in 1951, which states that a president may not serve more than two four-year terms? Didn’t he take an oath to defend the Constitution? That statement by him is a clue into what his ambitions are.

He left more clues. Don’t forget, Trump has much love and admiration for those who commit violence on his behalf, such as the truckloads of Texans that tried to run the Biden campaign bus off the road. Groups like Antifa and Proud Boys are “his people,” he says. He “loves” the insurrectionists. He recently publicly defended the people arrested and convicted of the assault on our Capital and police officers. Doesn’t that bother even the most loyal die-hard Trump fans? The kicker is that he so blatantly disregarded the Constitution once again. His oath includes protecting America from our enemies, both foreign and domestic. Our domestic enemies include those who commit violent crimes against elected and appointed officials and try to overthrow the workings of democracy. It’s not OK that he wants to overturn the results of our election. I find it ridiculous that the people who call themselves patriots disrespect our nation’s flag by using it to assault people, such as the rioters did on Jan. 6. Our enemies include Trump himself because he did not defend laws, democracy or our Constitution.

It’s OK to change your mind about Trump. But what would it take? I know Republicans and Trump extremists that blame Biden for every step of the troop withdrawal from Afghanistan and for the chaos that ensued. Also, for the deaths of 13 US service members along with the many wounded that sacrificed. I, like so many others, held my breath from the onset of the evacuation process until the last of our troops returned home. I felt the heartbreak of knowing families were grieving. I also gave thanks for the successes; the thousands of Americans and Afghans rescued.

Truthfully, there’s plenty of blame to go around for what didn’t go well. The evacuees themselves are partially to blame if they had opportunities to leave sooner but chose not to.

But … it was Trump and his Secretary of State, Pompeo, that made deals with the Taliban to withdraw all troops within a certain period. They did not include the Afghan government in the so-called peace talks. Making the deal was a surrender to terrorism, in my opinion. Over 5,000 imprisoned terrorists were released. Weren’t they the ones captured while our troops fought alongside the Afghan army and allies? Didn’t we lose American and allied service members who so bravely fought to imprison them? Yet, those prisoners are now free. Trump dealt with the enemy but had no strategy or plan in place to follow through with his promises to them. What details about the meeting with Taliban leaders are unknown to us? We know trust is an issue from someone who constantly lies.

I find it interesting that Republicans were impressed and in agreement with Trump pledging to end the “20-year war” and negotiating with terrorists to do it. I find it interesting that they are so outraged about our drone strike that unintentionally killed innocent people during the Afghanistan withdrawal. Government officials have openly admitted this was a tragic mistake. The same Republicans said nothing when Trump’s drone strike killed Iran’s general, Quasem Soleimani, affecting our service members. Iran retaliated by bombing a U.S. military base. Trump was televised bragging about his decision to strike Soleimani and casually mentioned that our troops were safe with only 11 experiencing headaches from the attack: a lie. Military leaders later revealed that more than 100 troops suffered brain injuries. Where was the outrage over this? Iran also shot down a civilian plane with 200 innocent passengers. They thought it was another U.S. attack because of the earlier strike on Soleimani at the Bagdad airport … interesting that there was no outrage from the Trump base. You know, there was mention that Trump’s drone attack was in violation of international law. Iran issued an arrest warrant for him and 35 US officials. What happened to that? Trump’s many broken laws seem to be mentioned by the media or Democrats and then forgotten.

President Biden took heat from all sides, including the media, and owned responsibility for a decision he knew would bring criticism. He made decisions about vaccine requirements that he knew would not be popular. He believes in taxing wealthy individuals and corporations instead of giving them all the breaks. He’s trying to restore relationships with foreign countries by using diplomacy concerning global issues. President Biden is bound to make some mistakes while serving. However, I believe he acts on what he thinks will be good for our country, not for personal adoration or bragging rights. He has the fortitude for the job.

I will never understand why Trump loyalists aren’t outraged that they were lied to for the four-year term he masqueraded as president. Why is it acceptable that he applauds those who break our laws to please him and further his agenda? Why not be outraged that he takes their money, uses it for his own gain, and continues to this day under the guise of running for office again? How about the fact that he never showed true fortitude? He didn’t have the courage to accept the reality of a global pandemic and do something to eradicate it here. Instead, he was in denial. He passed that responsibility to state leaders so he would not be blamed for unpopular protocols. He later admitted he “knew” early on the pandemic was severe to an extreme but didn’t want to “scare” people. Translation: He didn’t credit Americans with having enough intelligence to understand what we needed to hear and do during a public health crisis.

Those around him during his presidency worried about Trump’s mental state all along, especially after he lost the 2020 election. Isn’t this fact enough to change some minds or is the infatuation with him more important than recognizing the danger he represents?

When it comes to personal and public health decisions or loyalty to public figures it’s OK to reconsider. Be brave and say so. Just feel free to do it; especially when it’s for the good of all. It would be a step in the right direction for either topic mentioned here. And wouldn’t it be great to stop transmission of the deadliest virus in the history of our country or protect our country from politicians that have proven themselves unfit? Are you going to take part in the solutions or be part of the problem? Please choose wisely.

Author Carol Hartsoe is a Tideland News contributor.

(40) comments

noitall

Where do we find a :fit" politician? Otherwise why even listen to them. I have an education and can think for myself and reach conclusions that I can live with - if left alone by big brother politicians. Family is the overriding consideration, Politics is only robocalls taken to new level. Nobody there.

noitall

Many of my comments as many of yours also, fall onside the verbal parameters of the current crisis narrative. THIS IS CENSORSHIP AND THIS PAPER IS AS GUILTY OF THIS A S ANY MEDIA OUTLET. IT IS A COWARDLY WAY TO EDRESS REAL PROBLEMS THAT THEY FEAR. SO THIS WILL NEVER SE THE LIGHT OF FREE PRESS, NOR WILL THIS PAPER CHECK THE YELLOW JOUNALISM SECTION THAT WE WHO COMMENT MUST CLICK OVER TO COMMENT. TERRIBLE.

mpjeep

I would rather believe there was election fraud in 2020 than believe we have that many ignorant voters in America.

klacy

It wasn’t ignorance to vote against Trump. Who you vote for is not nearly as important as how you treat those that voted differently from you.

noitall

mp jeep We did have election fraud and the media and justices system both covered i up. Clearly a violation of our Constitution. If only we had a way to prosecute those who violate it - we would have a different country - one that was Constitutional and a rule of law. Not that hard to do and the support for this is there - you know it is!!!!.

noitall

Many of my comments as many of yours also, fall onside the verbal parameters of the current crisis narrative. THIS IS CENSORSHIP AND THIS PAPER IS AS GUILTY OF THIS A S ANY MEDIA OUTLET. IT IS A COWARDLY WAY TO EDRESS REAL PROBLEMS THAT THEY FEAR. SO THIS WILL NEVER SE THE LIGHT OF FREE PRESS, NOR WILL THIS PAPER CHECK THE YELLOW JOURNALISM SECTION THAT WE WHO COMMENT MUST CLICK OVER TO COMMENT. TERRIBLE.

David Collins

Totally knew where this conversation was going .

Sure , Trump ran on with the mouth , mainly to get peoples reaction . Lots of us do the same . A mirror moment here ?

Some of what has been said is true but most , if you switch Trump for Biden , would also be true . But , that’s OK . He will mostly snooze and bumble mumble his way through the next 3 years .

drewski

Only folks with open minds are subject to change. People would rather beleive a comfortable lie then an unpleasent truth.

mpjeep

Obama warned us about Biden, saying Never Underestimate Joe’s Ability to Mess Things Up. It’s so sad that the majority of the country was not listening to Obama’s distress signal.

Natural science says you can’t spread something you don’t have, takes into account scientifically proven concepts like T-cell immunity, and you don’t blame healthy people for spreading a virus that affects the vaccinated six times more than those who have already had a natural infection.

drewski

" virus that affects the vaccinated six times more than those who have already had a natural infection."

The cdc says the evidence between natural immunity and vaccination is inconclusive, and on that basis they recommend vaccination and booster shots.

Now some folks might believe things they see in CCNT or U tube or favorite TV pundit, as for me and mine we are listening to actual Drs. at the CDC and NIH

drewski

"Natural science says you can’t spread something you don’t have"

You get disease from disease organisms, viruses and bacteria for instance. logic suggests you can spread disease while not being physically sick yourself by passing organisms on to others. imagine a handshake when your hand is contaminated and the other party then touches their eye.

JusticeForAll

It is easy for one to become complacent with their way of thinking. To change your mind, one has to be willing to objectively look at all information available. Today's world has made it easy to drive the herder mentality, instead of an

intellectual conversation, and the less inclined simply ride the train without questioning. The Republicans love to call people sheep, when in actuality, the Trump fan club has demonstrated this mentality over and over again. Both parties suffer from gaps of reality in order to further their agenda. It has become polarized to the extent that it is detrimental to our nation, as a whole. Our focus should be uniting this nation, but Republicans continue to draw the line and assign blame randomly and recklessly, ignoring facts. Democrats need to understand that arrogance does not help them further their attempts to better social standings for those in need.

Those that spew the perpetual catch phrases, such as "mirror moment", should see beyond that mirror, and see the volatile future of our planet, if global changes are thwarted by self serving and closed minded people, regardless of political affiliation. No single individual is that important to keep this globe going. The collective of our species holds that responsibility.

noitall

Many of my comments as many of yours also, fall onside the verbal parameters of the current crisis narrative. THIS IS CENSORSHIP AND THIS PAPER IS AS GUILTY OF THIS A S ANY MEDIA OUTLET. IT IS A COWARDLY WAY TO EDRESS REAL PROBLEMS THAT THEY FEAR. SO THIS WILL NEVER SE THE LIGHT OF FREE PRESS, NOR WILL THIS PAPER CHECK THE YELLOW JOUNALISM SECTION THAT WE WHO COMMENT MUST CLICK OVER TO COMMENT. TERRIBLE.

mpjeep

Gas is $1 per gallon higher now than when Biden took office. That's about $30 per week more for an average modest family.

drewski

For what it's worth, supply and demand explain gas prices.

(Edited by staff.)

David Collins

Volatile future of our planet . Is that human wise or geologic ? Some would say both but we humans could , like most of the Dinosaurs , go extinct in a puft moment and the planet would go on evolving as normal . We are not relevant , just an irritation that would vanish without a trace in short order .

Mirror moments are certainly appropriate..

(Edited by staff.)

mpjeep

And who is responsible for the supply side?

JusticeForAll

Still love this...

“You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one. I hope someday you'll join us. And the world will live as one.”

― John Lennon

mpjeep

Biden is begging Saudi Arabia and other OPEC countries for more oil. He has blamed OPEC for withholding oil, not supply and demand as suggested.

For what it’s worth, Biden’s war on fossil fuels has caused this problem.

When Trump was President, we were energy independent. Can’t spin that...Net Zero!

drewski

What did Thomas Paine say about arguing with people who have abandoned reason? "Like giving medicine to the dead." When the economy is totally shut down ppl are not driving each day to work buses not running people not flying, demand drops, prices fall and we are 'energy independant" the economy opens demand increases prices rise.. Putting on blinders to only see the facts you wish to see / believe is the very crux of this LTTE.

mpjeep

Biden says the biggest threat to this country is terroristic concerned parents that speak up at school board meetings. Not to worry about the energy crisis, supply chain, inflation, open borders & illegals, China & Wuhan, high crime rate, drug abuse, the homeless, etc...just watch out for those crazy soccer moms.

David Collins

Actually , it is the low information people with the help of the anybody but trumpers that caused all this . Believed the hysterical media with their half truths and outright falsehoods . Now the same enlightened ones are lamenting buyers remorse when bungles fumbles affect them . Money matters little when stuff is not to be had and the best is yet to come .

Yes bungles biden does own the issues of today and he told us what his priorities were while campaigning from his basement . Diversity over experience and ability is the most ridiculous of them . How is that working out now ? Can you eat diversity , fuel your car and pay your bills with diversity ? If so , do tell .

Now he is up for paying retribution to illegals supposedly done wrong by , you guessed it , former Trump people . Up to $400 + K to lawbreakers . Attorneys will get half so that for sure is the prime motivation behind this . Strange for there is not a pro bono in the bunch . Imagine that !

drewski

Low information people, and those who twist facts or just make up quotes,are a danger. It's not irate soccer moms the DOJ is going to go after, it's the ppl threatening arson. Murder, and dismemberment.

Rumors repeated and expanded till a certain segment of the population calls it unassailable fact. Examples abound but it's medicine for the dead.

Jordan klepper interviews low info ppl for comedy central.

You may wish to check it out on you tube.

noitall

Many of my comments as many of yours also, fall onside the verbal parameters of the current crisis narrative. THIS IS CENSORSHIP AND THIS PAPER IS AS GUILTY OF THIS A S ANY MEDIA OUTLET. IT IS A COWARDLY WAY TO EDRESS REAL PROBLEMS THAT THEY FEAR. SO THIS WILL NEVER SE THE LIGHT OF FREE PRESS, NOR WILL THIS PAPER CHECK THE YELLOW JOUNALISM SECTION THAT WE WHO COMMENT MUST CLICK OVER TO COMMENT. TERRIBLE.

mpjeep

Biden: I’m gonna tax the wealthy. Elon Musk: No you’re not. Biden: Okay, I won’t.

David Collins

... Some things pulled back and the schools shut down , still drew a full check but shut down , but the people were still mobile as ever . They still drove , heated and cooled their homes and recreation went through the roof . Travel to and from the coast went through the roof . So, this shut down was not quite down . Never before have I seen so many cars , trucks of all sizes and cars pulling boats before . All needing fuel , at any price and fuel they got . This repeats itself up and down the coast from Maine to Florida and beyond . The down side is if we have a tough winter then you better have plenty of woolies to wear and plenty of money under your mattress . As usual the clean energy/climate change zealots have put the cart before the horse with their “ I have a dream “ moment and hamstrung plan B . Their plan A is just not up to the task and not going to be anytime soon if ever . Old bungles biden embraced this quixotic nonsense , heck Hunter could front him some of his art money if the old man runs short , due to the fact that none of his decisions will affect him in any shape or form forever . A cold grave is preferable to a hot one anyway . You and I and the rest will just have to make do . Europe and China have figured this out and reverting to what has always worked . But you hear nothing of this , why ?

(Edited by staff.)

mpjeep

Biden canceled the Keystone Pipeline and suspended the oil & gas leases in Alaska. Supply and demand, not really.

And don’t look for Biden to solve this problem any time soon. He won’t solve a problem that he created in the first place.

Reporters could ask Biden what he plans on doing about this issue, but I doubt he would be allowed to answer the question.

drewski

Despite the assertation that tourism boomed, negating the consumption loss. let me point out that air pollution dropped around the world to record low levels. the sales of gasoline/products are documented by the petro industry and are readily avail info on their web sites.

I sincerely wish Ms. Hartsow had given some hint or guide to how we bring people back from the abyss of vitriol and delusion. Even when accepting that a grievance is simply incorrect, some folks just turn and deflect to the next one. Tucker carlson is doing a pay per view specialon Fox about how the Jan 6 riot was actually a false flag operation. We heard it from the beginning, including on this forum. "it was antifa, it was BLM"

No folks it wasent, it was an angry mob whipped up into a frenzy and set loose on the Capitol by DJT. His reasons/pathology are pretty obvious.

...

(Edited by staff.)

David Collins

Everybody has an opinion .

Heck , the white house won’t release the results of the JFK killing . Blames the Covid , as usual .

mpjeep

Decent folks, by now, should see Biden is not making any decisions himself. He has difficulty reading a teleprompter or answering prepared questions from friendly media.

Policies are made behind the scenes by others.

JusticeForAll

Everyone may have an opinion, but those opinions do not override the facts. But in today's world, for some, opinions are good enough, which is the major problem of our society today.

noitall

Right on. Opinion sells. Facts are unknown and boring.

drewski

Correction: Ms. Hartsoe I am not the best typist, esp on a tiny phone.

Does president Biden make gaffes and misspeak, sure he does has been for 40 years. You have to consider the totality of the circumstances, not just watch the gaffes in a close up & loop on Faux news. Its all been said before" bidens handlers" the deep state the shadow agenda.. Do you think all polititions dont have speech writers, media consultants, 'handlers" there are plenty of gaffe reels on you tube of Trump blundering "capturing the airports" ( in the war of 1812) and 3k other doozies.

Both biden and trump are too old for the rigors of the presidency. i am objective enough to acknowledge that, some folks seem unwilling to look at any topic except through the distorting prism of their own bias.

mpjeep

I can agree with the too old for the job thing, including Pelosi and McConnell.

David Collins

Facts are in the eye of the beholder and we all have different eyes . Opinions will have to do now as they have done forever . What else you got ?

mpjeep

I’m sure you realize that we are responding to an op-ed, and although many contain facts, some frequently include reasoned opinions. And yes, bias is always included.

4yanks

I wish the editors would block some readers from posting comments. There are never any serious discussions of issues related to the community. Every discussion is swiftly hijacked by one of the regular commentators with their particular, often delusional, spin on it. Once that happens the other 3-5 repeat offenders pile on until the discussion becomes the same discussion for every article or letter that strikes their fancy. In the interest of promoting greater community understanding please put a cap on the number of comments readers can make per month.

Jackie Gleason

Carol Hartsoe has succeeded once again. She is also blind to her freelance writing profession s well as a school assistant. She should know better but cannot help herself. Once out of the spotlight of being a columnist when people actually read papers because they had to she finds herself trying to be worthy at something. What better way to set the trap with Trump bait and most people follow. Without Trump most of the mainstream media would be without jobs. Give them a couple more years and they will succeed starting in Virginia Tuesday. Trump is not the enemy. Biden is not your enemy. The career state people...those with forty years in the Federal Government living off Senior Executive Service Pay are the players behind the puppets. Some figures like Trump do not like the players. Some people like Biden need the players. Either way friends, vote local and stop letting the Hartsoe's of the world get you amped up. I'm surprised the editors of the local papers still give her space. Maybe they should try the Swansboro High School paper editors and give them space weekly so the adults can get educated. It would be interesting to see what the youth has to say about their future we are leaving them.

David Collins

While it would be interesting to hear what high school undergrads perceive , one must remember that they have precious few real life experiences to draw from . Same goes for the vocal college undergrads that were sent off to learn , at great expense I might add , but end up parroting every left wing instructor bent on social justice , their views on justice only matter by the way , before actually graduating and entering the real world . Which is why history seems to continually reinvent itself with all the ups , downs and missteps . They learn what sounds so good and idyllic but fail to get educated and ultimately fail to become productive . Just destructive . We are seeing this now and wondering why .

(Edited by staff.)

dc

Pretty simple. Cut the supply and not the demand and what happens? JB said the Va loss wasn't his fault because why? LOL! 

(Edited by staff.)

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