Yeah, my parents voting for Brexit has been…difficult.
Last time I spoke to mum we somehow got onto the subject and I got the usual Torygraph nonsense about how the British always stick to the EU rules and pay up when the French and Germans just ignore stuff they don’t like.
I’m still furious about how they’ve limited their grandson’s horizons and I really have to hold my tongue.
This year’s a very different sort of animal than the usual “politics at the dinner table” arguments, though. Ten or fifteen years ago, if one of my uncles mentioned that he thought the Republicans had some good ideas, and we disagreed, it wouldn’t massively change my opinion of the guy because he preferred a different tax rate on the middle class, say. But it would severely impact my opinion of my relatives if I found out that one was an enthusiastic supporter of an actual, literal white supremacist.
I don’t know what’s worse, enthusiastic supporters or the ones I have, reluctant ones who kind of ignore the racist, sexist bits because it’s not part of the narrative that protects their guns or whatever. Willful ignorance.
Exactly, single issue voters who have one concern (guns, taxes, religion) and are somehow willing to take Trump’s word as gospel on that one thing but can handwave off everything else as “oh haha that’s all just silly politics” to justify their choice.
This is the crux of it. By “accepting” and not challenging hateful beliefs, do you end up teaching your children that supporting them isn’t a top priority for you?
Another very common example: when you know a relative has committed sexual abuse and/or assault on other family members in the past, how do you justify bringing your own children to family events where they will be present?
Yeah this. The current crop just scares me. I don’t know how big an influence this rabid right (john birch, etc) had before, that is if it got this scary close to electing someone like Trump but man making Nixon look like a sane and rational choice is not a good thing.
And to go before my time there were Republicans like Eisenhower that would be branded socialist liberal demons by the current standards of the party.
In some ways the past few years I have been glad I live to far away to make the family reunions from what I heard from my father as more than a few have gone deep into Teapartycrazyland. It was bad enough biting my toungue in my high school days getting asked ‘So whats it like going to school with all the niggers?’ but now a days. Fuck that. I will not willfully on purpose put myself in that environment.
This isn’t to say that Democrats are perfect by any means, but I would venture to say there’s unquestionably a lot more of the “less evidence, more gut feelings” stuff going on in the Republican camp. Democrats aren’t the ones denying the existence of climate change, insisting that the government is lying about the unemployment rate (and even hurricane wind speeds), lying about the trajectory of the budget deficit, doing everything in their power to destroy a milquetoast health care law that originated in large part from Republican think tanks, destroying or dismantling protections for LGBTQ people, restricting access to voting based on provably bogus concerns about fraud, etc.
Polarization is genuinely not a “both sides” problem, it just manifests on both sides because Republicans have become unmoored from reality, which makes it hard to have substantive conversations with them. You may as well decry not being able to compromise with 9/11 truthers or moon landing hoaxers.
I didn’t want to appear like I was attacking anyone, because there is certainly a cognitive dissonance with some D voters as well. I’m not saying Romney was someone I’d vote for, but there’s been an awful lot of handwaving about drone strikes, secret kill lists for American citizens without trial, and Guantanimo still being open.
I like Obama, like, a lot. Even go as far as to say that I like-like him, but I mention some of his faults to people and they talk about how it’s not important in the big picture and we should be thankful for what we have instead of inspiring future leaders to be better. If you are unwilling to see that your own team has work to do in their candidates then it’s irrelevant if your’re R or D (or G or T or whatever) it’s a polarization issue.
All sides have their fringes. I’ve no doubt there’s many a Hillaryite who refuses to acknowledge that she fucked up on the email server thing the same way Trumpers refuse to acknowledge that there’s any racism. Again, it’s a faith, not a belief. But, I definitely do agree that right now it’s incredibly more weighted in the R camp. That has a lot to do with striving to create and win over low education voters however, where you don’t encourage them to do any free thinking or empathizing.
Because people always assume they can change the other person when the time came. That they’d see that the little bundle of cells/human and therefore would be clinical/emotional enough to Do The Right Thing.
People get married not having worked these things out. People still have abortions they don’t tell their partners about.