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Op-Ed: Compromise Politics – Do We Become More Free When We Compromise?

By • July 7, 2024

Compromise, Compromise, Compromise—this is all you hear in politics nowadays. My question is: does compromising make us more free?


As I ponder this question, I cannot think of a single instance where compromise has made us better. Have we lessened our debt through compromise? Have we stopped shedding the blood of innocent unborn children because of compromise? Has education improved? Have we stopped the sodomy of our youth? How about protecting our lands, our borders, our water, our liberties, our freedoms—have these been safeguarded through compromise? How about gun control? Compromise will always infringe on the Second Amendment. Can you think of one thing that has improved because of compromise?

Did our Founding Fathers compromise to give us our Constitutional Republic? One of the fiercest arguments was over congressional representation—should it be based on population or divided equally among the states? The framers compromised by giving each state one representative for every 30,000 people in the House of Representatives and two representatives in the Senate. They agreed to count enslaved Africans as three-fifths of a person. Slavery itself was a thorny issue that threatened to derail the Union. It was temporarily resolved when the delegates agreed that the slave trade could continue until 1808.

They counted Africans as three-fifths of a person. Going back to the definition of compromise—“accept standards that are lower than desirable”—this would be a difficult compromise for me, to say someone is less than a person. Did we get the Constitution ratified because of this compromise? Yes, we did, but we later fought a Civil War to recognize their full humanity. Compromise always comes at a cost later.

Compromising on what song will be our National Anthem, what our State Flag will look like, or how many days we will be in session—these are compromises I can be flexible on. However, when it comes to compromising on life, suggesting that some are less than human, or compromising my morals, principles, or integrity, that is something I will protect and defend.

Adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. James 4:4

If you can think of one instance in the last ten years where compromise has protected life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, please share.

This Op-Ed was written by Idaho Senator Glenneda Zuiderveld and originally published on Substack. Op-Eds do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of those at the Idaho Dispatch.

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Tags: 2A, Abortion, Border, Compromise, Constitutional Republic, Education, Founding Fathers, Guns, Idaho Legislature, Land, Politics, Second Amendment, Senator Glenneda Zuiderveld, Water

13 thoughts on “Op-Ed: Compromise Politics – Do We Become More Free When We Compromise?

  1. We cannot compromise on Providential issues of faith and liberty.

    WE can compromise on prudential issues.

    Conservatives have trouble differentiating between the two and progressive liberals don’t know the difference.

    The Supreme Court of The United States voted 9-0 45% of the time this past session. Almost half the issues were prudential.

    1. Bingo! Thanks for that accurate differentiation. In my experience, compromise is the only way things get done.

  2. Can’t remember where I read the quote but it’s memorable for the stark reality it presents when compromising with evil:

    “The only compromise between food and poison is death.”

    I believe it may have been Ayn Rand.

  3. Compromise can be seen on our college campuses with Iranian and Hanas terror supporters destroying buildings and burning our sacred flags. No one arrested. No one.
    Even after the Supreme Courts decision on the J-6ers, they still rot in prison. The people responsible for the stolen elections, Co-vid and the deadly vaccines still walk free.
    Compromise brings nothing but destruction.

  4. You probably mentioned the three fifths without explaining because of the need for some brevity but the number of representatives were reduced for the south because of this compromise. I consider that a good compromise.

  5. You forget the Constitution and Declaration were only signed and created through compromise. Were those a waste? I don’t think so.

    The issue arises when groups, peple and organizations like IFF or even the Freedom Caucus decide that they and only they have the foresight to determine what is right, for Idaho or the country. They have repeatedly stated they will not compromise their principles, which is one thing as an individual citizen another thing entirely as a party leader or legislator. What they tend to forget is that as a legislator they are elected to represent all of Idaho and specifically everyone in their district, not just those that voted for them.

    Today’s partisan politics means that one side wins and the otherside loses. Which means as soon as the losing side gets a chance they void that agreement for something else. This is what has created an inept, dysfunctional Congress is Washington D.C. Nothing is decided and put aside in order to move forward on other important issues. Each new administration wastes valuable time at the beginning of their terms to undo what the previous administration accompished. This leaves vast government departments and the business community in limbo.

    Compromise means neither side got everything they wanted, none us do. None of us are really entitled to EVERYTHING we might want, that is just not realistic, to think other wise is idealistic and belongs in fairy tales. Life is a compromise, it’s about choices. Compromsie also means that all parties had a relevant say in that compromise, in this case, how they are governed, which is a core principle of our Constitutionnn is it not?

      1. Wong! Do the leftist in the NY and CA houses compromise with the Republican minority there? Answer: never in 1,000 years would they.

        Then why do you expect Republicans to compromise with leftists in the ID legislature?

        Just because Dave is a liberal and Kent is a liberal, does that mean the elected Republican majority has to compromise with your liberal views? Why should they. Your liberal policies are destructive and the proof shows this. Why do liberals flee liberal areas and move to conservative areas?

        There are places your views reign supreme like CA, WA, NY , IL, etc. why don’t you go live there if you want to live in a place with leftist policies? Not safe enough for you there, too much crime? Too soft on the criminals there? Gee I wonder why? Liberals hate the law abiding and love criminals. Liberals destroy everything they touch. Liberals want to disarm the law abiding, yet about 80-85% of the gun crime comes from criminal inner city gangs. Why don’t you find a way to disarm them so the crime can go way down in those liberal “utopias”. Put them in prison where they belong. All their senseless murders and random attacks on innocent people.

        Look at any area the liberals run and the taxes go sky high, crime goes up, utility prices skyrocket, and corruption abounds/ people are forced to overpay for “welfare” and all the government handouts. Why don’t you both go live in one of those places since the liberals are such poor victims that we need to help, to “compromise” with? Why do liberals flee liberal areas and move to conservative areas. Are they “spreading the misery around”? Conservatives don’t want liberals around. Liberals destroy and poison.

        Yet you want us to compromise with your leftist failed policies? Get lost. The audacity you liberals have to think Republicans always need to compromise with you while your side never compromises with the right. The record is in. Your side sucks. No one should ever compromise with a liberal democrat. If you don’t like it pack up the moving truck and move back to Los Angeles (the city of devils), a city ten by “progressives”, where you’ll be welcomed by a bunch of illegal freeloaders with their hands out for your money. Why do liberals flee liberal areas and move to conservative areas. Conservatives don’t want liberals around. Liberals destroy liberals poison (drag queen hour for the children, lgbt forced in your face 24/7, and poor victims have a right to attack and kill you because you owe them- this is the liberal deluded mind).

        Conservatives don’t want liberals around. Liberals are destroyers of societies and liberals poison the mind.

  6. Representatives and legislators are elected to represent their constituents. The job entails the need to make many compromises to get things done. That is just being practical. But understand that there are things that they will deal with, that they cannot compromise on without dishonoring their oath of office. They need to be able to distinguish between prudential issues and principles that do not allow erosion by compromise. Is it progress, is it a success to make a compromise to get legislation through that respects the humanity of some people and not others? Generations of “practical” legislators got the job done with such compromises. Maybe we can end slavery next session. Today, we have short sighted legislators that compromise on abortion, legal to kill some pre-born human beings, protecting others right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. Some still see it as progress to condemn to death a child for the crimes of her rapist father, but other babies are protected from death if they are deemed inconvenient by someone else. The principles of respecting human life, ALL human life, are a clear example of what cannot to be compromised away.

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