Loose Ends: The Great Divide

MEEKER I Recognizing and acknowledging “The Great Divide” between our Front Range and Western Slope residents is only the first step toward moving forward to opening our communities in the next few weeks. The social conventions that have continued to create obstacles between new and long term residents have been in place for so many years that they are difficult to change. Divisiveness and rancor between Meeker residents continue to boil underneath the surface. 

The erroneous perceptions and assumptions that we make about our fellow community members continue to stop us from getting involved outside of our own interests. In the past, no matter how serious the incident or issue, sides were chosen. Rather than trying to resolve the problem, it was comfortable to fall back into the old habit of inaction. The phrase, “The Meeker Way” has become so common, that it has become acceptable to justify any non-involvement. Once this familiar and extremely vague conversation-stopper had been said aloud, all efforts to make progress stop.

The success and growth of two annual events, Meeker Classic and Range Call, depend on volunteer help. It hasn’t helped that state and local governments have not been on the same page about opening up their communities. That inconsistency has allowed residents to continue to feel comfortable with making their own decisions about wearing masks and social distancing. Getting vaccinations has become viewed by some as a personal choice. Others view this as a selfish act infringing on ensuring public safety for all of us. necessity.  

These opposing views are dictating how we interact with each other in public. We all need to get rid of these destructive behaviors and work out a solution for working together again. It is when we rid ourselves of these old familiar ways of dealing with each other, that we can move forward.  It is only then that that great divide between us will close.

By DOLLY VISCARDI | Special to the Herald Times