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Constant agreement isn’t healthy, but neither is polarization of a community due to complete intolerance.

Differing opinions force us to look at all aspects of an issue and often bring new solutions to light when disagreeing parties work together to reach common ground. The key here is cooperation among parties with differing viewpoints, which appears to be coming back around in Sedona.

Longtime residents know Sedona has seen its share of controversy, but the community atmosphere was never as toxic as what we’ve recently experienced.

Sedona has a reputation for going against the mainstream, which is what makes it a community people want to live in. However, when those people within the community begin turning against each other, the spirit of the community is poisoned.

No resident should feel they can’t speak their mind without being harassed or ignored. We owe it all our neighbors to pay them the same respect we wish to receive — and that doesn’t mean we have to agree with them or support their cause.

Mature, responsible adults should be able to debate issues without playing dirty — name calling, character bashing.

My job requires me to work with people from both camps on all of these issues, and I’ve found it’s not hard to listen to opinions that differ from mine and still find a way to respect the person expressing them and walk away without a negative attitude.

Some of my favorite readers are those who email me frequently challenging my ideas, comment — not always positively — on coverage and force me to see other points of view.

Residents in Sedona yearn for a “sense of community,” while at the same time some kill it with “my way or the highway” attitudes.

Agreeing to disagree may be the first step this community needs to bring it back together.

An effort is under way to foster this type of public discourse, and with hard work and dedicated people, it’s no doubt Sedona will find a way to keep debates civil.

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  • REDeveloper

    There are people in certain classes of professions that fear they will be retaliated against by speaking a view point against what the City of Sedona's official position is. If someone is being negatively affected by something, they should not be placed in a position of fear for their job or business contracts for standing up for themselves.

  • Elmer Ville

    We can only hope. . . . .

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