We hear it all the time.  America is so polarized these days.  Sometimes I wonder if our America is any more polarized now than it was during the times when Federalist John Adams touted his nationalistic ideas against Democrat-Republican Thomas Jefferson's states' rights platform.

I'm noticing, however, during this particular election, that people with differing opinions about the role of the federal government are having a harder and harder time being cordial to one another.  The internet may be playing a role, but am I the only one noticing a lack of respect for people who have opposing viewpoints?  People who support Democrats and Republicans alike are equally guilty.

I used to enjoy the occasional playful, political sparring, but not anymore.  Now, I feel that it is nearly impossible to have a good natured, spirited conversation without hurting feelings.  I actually have a fear that people might hold it against me if it's discovered that we're not voting for the same man on November 6th.

It's gotten to the point that I try to avoid the topic of who I plan on voting for in 4 weeks.  It's just not worth the aggravation of defending my vote.  I'm a busy guy.  I don't have the time, nor the desire, to get into a heated debate with others about an election that is likely to be decided by a handful of states not named Massachusetts.

I'm the first guy to encourage being passionate and plugged in when it comes to politics.  Well informed, active Americans who exercise their right to vote can only make for a stronger country; but, a little tolerance of a differing viewpoint can go a long way, too.