Well. it’s October. I had huge plans. In my quarantined fantasy, life would have returned to normal by now and we would all have skipped off into the sunset. Instead we are all circling the political toilet. Things have gotten bad. Family dinners and birthday parties have become minefields that I must survive, and I can’t leave a party without my grandma slipping me a Sean Hannity book about his version of America. Don’t worry, I didn’t read it. I make no apologies for my liberal heart to my family and for the most part they accept it, although every now and then my grandma tries to convert me. I accept their political views as well. Doesn’t mean I don’t talk about how crazy they are on the car ride home. I may even throw out a cheap shot every now and then, but we manage to still coexist.
As political signs come out and candidate commercials dominate our airwaves it becomes harder and harder to maintain that civility. We all believe what we believe. It is deeply personal. I’m not one to let a door knocking bible salesman tell me I’m worshiping the wrong way. Why should I let a yelling man in a red hat do the same thing?
I am guilty of this. I put up signs. I drew a line and it created hate. It was not my intention, but I jumped on the bandwagon. So, I moved my sign and withdrew from this public fight if for no other reason than to stop the further escalation of hate and no longer contribute to this great divide.
One evening as I was riding my ‘high horse’ I watched a news story about a group that was trying to take down the dinosaur at a McDonalds in Tucson. This group does not believe in the existence of dinosaurs and therefore feels offended by the life-sized statue. (HUGE collective eyeroll) In their official Zoom interview two men stated their case and defended their beliefs. This group gathers, writes letters, petitions and harasses all in the name of their beliefs. The belief that dinosaurs didn’t exist.
The paleontologist that the news show interviewed couldn’t be sure that this wasn’t a joke and to tell you the truth neither could I. What it was, was a sign of the times. If there are groups for, then you can bet there is one against it. You can also bet that there are people who don’t want to take a side. These people who do not want to have any bad vibes interrupting their perfect bubble. I guess the rest of us should try to respect them and their need for uninterrupted (yet pretend) bliss.
We all want to be heard and we want others to believe in what we believe in. My big lesson in 2020 is that I don’t need to publicly express my views and beliefs. I don’t need to tell people via a sign that they should care about others or who to vote for. I just need to take my vote to the ballot box. It will say everything I need.
“Conflict is inevitable, combat is optional”– Max Lucado