Wednesday, February 01, 2012

I'm Right and You're Stupid

Warning: this is going to get political.

Back in the days when I used to post more, I posted about Electile Dysfunction. That was about three years ago and I was suffering from post-election malaise. As you’ve seen from my infrequent posts in the past year or so, I’m a full-time student (sometimes more). In addition, I’m also, mostly, working full-time. That doesn’t mean that I’m less opinionated. It doesn’t mean that I’m less wordy. I haven’t had the mental energy to deal with public politics on my blog. I hope this post changes that.

If you’re not reading me via a feed reader or Facebook, my political leanings are fairly obvious. As my profile states, “I'm a gun-toting, pro-life, hetero-kinky, pro-gay-marriage defense contractor with an interest in Eastern religions and philosophy with a tolerance for all walks of life. I'd like to hand you a flower but believe we need to be holding bake sales to build bombers. Confused? Imagine what it's like in my head!”

Yes, I’m fiscally conservative. I’m fairly liberal when it comes to social issues but I’m pro-life. I think that personal responsibility matters. As I mentioned in the Electile Dysfunction post, there’s not a candidate who completely speaks for me.

I could go on for pages but I know that we’re all suffering from information overload. I use a feed reader. When I see a post that makes me click more than twice to see what they have to say, I click on something else. I want the posts to be succinct. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know. I’m the Wordy Bitch. I find it hard to be succinct. That said, I will try to get to the point.

Politics are an ugly, ugly thing. People get rude. They attack [even within the same party (Hillary and Barack in the last election) (Newt and Mitt in this one)].

My best friend in the world is a hard-core liberal. She’s a liberal, pro-choice atheist who thinks (correct me if I’m wrong, CaveBitch) that Obama should be given another four years…

We talk politics when we’re together. We love each other. We respect each other. We discuss the issues without personally attacking each other. I like hearing what she has to say. I think and hope that she likes hearing my opinion. We don’t often agree but we listen and disagree, respectfully. We debate the issues. I don’t think she’s stupid because she believes what she believes. I think she knows that I thoughtfully stand by my beliefs. We respect each other. Our discussions reflect that (even if drapery becomes a MAJOR issue…).

There’s also a woman in Maine who is even more liberal than CaveBitch. She is the sister of my heart. One of the best conversations I’ve had in my life was with her. It’s old news now but we debated the Dixie Chicks and whether or not they were censored after a concert declaration. We completely disagreed about all of it but we remained friends after the conversation.

So. in the interest of trying to be succinct, there’s this: I don’t put a condition on my friendships. I don’t make a condition of being my friend that you agree with me on everything. My real friends don’t expect me to agree with them on everything. As the second ex-husband once said, “If I wanted to date myself, I’d stay at home.”

I’m probably going to be posting political thoughts in the next ten months or so. If you agree with me, I’d love to hear from you. If you disagree with me, I’d also love to hear from you! Let’s just not attack each other personally, okay? Let’s debate the issues and talk about the candidates.

The title of this post is a warning. Too many people are so caught up in their ideologies that they can’t step back and think about trying to find some common ground. I promise this: If you don’t attack; if you present your belief in a way that is respectful, I will respond in kind. The problem in most political conversations is that most of us have become caught up in attack mode. We respond to a difference of belief by calling the differing person stupid or racist or redneck or… .

Sure. I believe I’m right. I do not, however, think you’re stupid. Tell me what you think – and why you think it.