Some people contend that while Americans may be divided by ideology or opinion, they are united by fundamental political values. Describe these core values and discuss a specific example of how their practical interpretations might conflict.

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For example, Americans’ fundamental commitment to equality of opportunity has led to divisions over affirmative action programs, with both proponents and opponents citing their belief in equality of opportunity as the justification for their position. Proponents of these programs see them as necessary to ensure equality of opportunity, whereas opponents believe that affirmative action is a form of preferential treatment that violates basic American values.