Zealot, n. a person who shows zeal, especially to an undue or fanatic extent.” –Random House Dictionary.

Do you know anyone who fits the above definition? Likely you do. My view , is this: characteristically, zealots are given to heated, tension-filled, overpowering vocal rants, rather, than courteous civil discourse.

My experience with these types of individuals is they make every attempt to win a debated argument shouting down their opponent, intimidating nose-to-nose posture. Ordinarily, I simply walk away regardless if I agree or disagree. There is nothing to be gained from continuing to express my own views in an uncomfortable environment.

Oddly enough, other than zealous Democrats, I’ve had run-ins with Libertarians. Although, I am conservative, and usually agree, we part company in some areas, particularly in foreign affairs where I clearly fall into the “peace through strength” category.

Apparently, there are shades of gray in every philosophy. Working to find common ground requires an individual to desire locating areas of agreement. Desire to find mutual solutions is not, in my opinion, something the zealot embraces.