As a new resident of Payson, and an active participant in the Arizona political process as a poll supervisor, precinct committee person, and campaign volunteer, I have found the upheaval over the last presidential election to be both unfounded and sadly unpatriotic.

The two-party system is intended to produce a healthy balance of political views and societal beliefs, and to foster civil discussion and compromise as a result. Instead it has devolved into disparity among neighbors, friends and family, and was ultimately epitomized by the uncivilized tribal warfare demonstrated at our national Capitol on January 6th. That stunning display of disrespect for our country, our flag, our elected representatives and those sworn to protect them was the most disheartening event I have witnessed since 9/11. It must not happen again. We must all take responsibility for the direction of our country by staying involved, supporting and electing leaders who believe in fair and balanced government, and most of all, listening to each other.

Mary Marshall, Payson

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