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Wednesday, October 10, 2012


I used to be opinionated about politics.  I used to like discussing politics.  I used to think you could change people’s minds about politics.  I used to think it mattered who was elected to represent you in government.  I still think it matters, but I don’t think you can change people’s minds, and I no longer like to discuss politics. 

Unfortunately I am still opinionated.

As much as I no longer want to discuss politics, being a stubborn opinionated clod, it is often very difficult to bite my tongue. 

The problem is that people do not ask you if you want to discuss politics.  If they did it might go like this:

“Excuse me, I have an opinion on who should be elected president this November, and if you don’t agree I would like to change your mind.  Would you like to hear my opinion?”

“Why I am sure that it is an interesting opinion with many facts and statistics to support it, however I have already made up my mind and no facts or statistics will change my opinion or how I plan to vote, so any conversation about the election could only prove to be unproductive.  Who do you like in this week’s Giant’s game?”

Unfortunately conversations never go this way.  Generally either at a casual meeting or over the internet I am greeted with this:

“Excuse me, I don’t know you, but don’t you think that Mitt Romney is a scum sucking, hate the poor, rich bastard who wants to lower taxes for his rich cronies and convert the rest of the population into corporate slaves, while ending legalized abortion, and eliminating homosexuals?  Oh and what about his plan to drill for oil by fracking in your backyard and polluting the atmosphere and causing the ice caps to melt which will flood the property of anyone making under $250,000 a year?”

I would like to respond, “No comment.”  But that could be interpreted as, “Oh yes, I very much agree with your intelligent assertions.”  Alas, I am unable to do this.  Instead I get dragged into a political argument that I had no desire to be drug. (Dragged? Drugged? Be druggen? One of those.)

For you liberals, I also am unable to follow along with the extremists on the right who want me to agree that President Obama is a card carrying communist, is a non-citizen Muslim who hates America and wants to establish himself as a Supreme Dictator, take money from hard working rich people and distribute it to his friends, while at the same time making abortion and homosexuality mandatory and outlawing the burning of any fossil fuels.

It is as if someone sidled up to you and said, “Excuse me, but there is no God but Allah and Mohammed is his name.  Don’t you agree?”

Until I learn how to bite my tongue and just ignore these antagonists, I am afraid I am doomed to locking political horns whether I like it or not.

How do you avoid discussing issues with fanatics who constantly want to drag you into a political discussion and convert you to their position?



  1. As you know, I've resolved to do a better job of avoiding the discussion of politics. You're right about there once being a time when politics could be more rationally discussed, and I pray for a return to those times.

  2. I'm with the esteemed and learned Mr. Hayes on this one. I have to zip my lip and keep it that way. I grew up in a house where ugliness reared it's head like a crazed maniac at the mention of political issues. My father's entire family was rabid about politics. So I've been schooled in "shut it unless you want an argument" but care about it and vote because it is important.
    If you don't vote, don't gripe about the outcome is my thought. And I've already sent in my absentee ballot....because I hate going to the polls that much for the same reason....hate the exit's a no win situation.
    Why must this process feels so dirty and icky these days? I know, and so speaks Pollyanna or Suzy Sunshine but I long for civility and respect..........sigh, Oma Linda

  3. I don't think there are any winners in religion or politics. :/ I know, I had that weekend rant about my state, but am tired of the cronyism in my state. For one, I feel when they give the teachers big raises, we shouldn't be at the bottom of the food chain in education. :/ So, how 'bout R.G.III? :)

  4. If they don't agree with me, they're obviously ignorant--& I refuse to discuss something as important as politics with ignorant people!

  5. I became a US citizen so I could vote...what I've discovered is that everyone voted for the guy who won, whoever that might be in any given four year period. What happened to the other lot then?

  6. They're all a bunch of crooks. So there.


  7. just don't comment. they will do all the talking.

  8. Ya know, if it was only about opinions we could probably all deal with it in a civilized manner. What's happened though is that it's become judgements. And once someone's made a judgement there's no changing their mind.
    So if all you have is an opinion it's a good idea to keep your head down.

  9. ...and post your comment a couple of times ;-)