Three excellent columns in the Aug. 16 Seattle Times offer wise counsel in these challenging, turbulent days: Opinion Op-Eds by Ella Taylor [“America has a terrible case of the Screaming Memes”] and Tim Burgess [“6 steps to real, enduring police reform”] and columnist Jon Talton’s “The pandemic isn’t the only risk to Seattle business” [Business].

What these writings share is a call for rational, nuanced, nonideological discourse on civic issues, whether local or national. They encourage all of us, everyday citizens and appointed and elected officials alike, to quell our passions, no matter how strongly felt, and to approach our serious and diverse public challenges in a well-considered, practical fashion. Let us all seek compromise and common ground. We are better served if we avoid one-sided interpretations and blanket conclusions.

Our world is one of many shades of color, not black and white. Lasting civic improvements are always difficult and often slow moving.

A special thanks for Burgess’ profoundly useful and compelling six steps for Seattle police reform. We need the likes of Burgess in our current Seattle City Council.

Jerry Shierk, Seattle