As frustrating as it is, the ongoing Washington stalemate on health care, immigration and almost any other essential issue should not be surprising. It is not politics as some claim. It is a deep ideological rift among Americans.
In 1776, had the American revolutionaries tried the Barack Obama approach of "reaching out" in a spirit of "cooperation" with the Tories and the British Crown there never would have been a United States of America in the first place.
While we are indeed currently politically divided and somewhat polarized, this is actually our normal state as a nation -- and on the polarization scale, we're nowhere near the "most divided" we've ever been. Far from it.
Research from the Women's Philanthropy Institute show that women, in general, score higher on motives of care and empathy. However, further research needs to examine other motivations for giving by gender.
The fall of The Wall signified the fall of the Soviet Union, and an end to the Cold War. And while this was of enormous historical import, I fear that future generations won't really pay much attention to it.