If there is one thing that Americans should be able to agree on, it’s the importance of civil disagreement. At a time when Americans are more polarized than at any other moment in recent memory, civil conversation should be viewed as a good thing.
Yet, some on the Left now want to “cancel” famed actor and outspoken libertarian Vince Vaughn for speaking with President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania at the National Football Championship. Many on social media were up in arms that Vaughn would dare have a conversation with the President.
Journalist and Twitter user Timothy Burke shared a video of the chat, along with the text, “I’m very sorry to have to share this video with you. All of it, every part of it.” This tweet received over 26,000 likes.
Another user tweeted, “I’m not angry about Vince Vaughn, just profoundly disappointed. And I want nothing more to do with him. Once upon a time I found him quite entertaining. Not anymore.”
The controversy led #VinceVaughn to trend on Twitter.
Underlying the outrage is the pernicious lie that Americans shouldn’t be friends with those who disagree with them politically. Politics, regrettably, has so much power over people that one woman wrote as a headline, “Donald Trump is Destroying My Marriage,” in the left-leaning New York Intelligencer.
Yet, it doesn’t have to be this way.
Famously, prior to his death, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia and his interlocutor and sparring partner Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg were warm friends. Despite seeing the world from two juxtaposing viewpoints, on the day Scalia died, Ginsberg wrote, “we were best buddies.” They were even known to take their families on vacation together.
This didn’t make their political disagreements less fierce. But it did mean that the two knew what was more important than their disagreements: friendship.
As Focus President Jim Daly eloquently put it in an op-ed for Fox News, “What we saw Monday night in the presidential box was refreshing and a snapshot of civility – something both sides should be able to agree on is needed more than ever before.”
Vince Vaughn has nothing to apologize for.
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Photo by Gage Skidmore