Sunday, November 2, 2008

They are incorrect, we are bad.

Michele Catalano writes on Pajamas Media about losing friends because of who you vote for.
It saddens me that the political discourse in this country has become so volatile and divisive that people are afraid to say who they are voting for. It saddens me that there are an awful lot of stories like mine out there — too many people who have felt a loss over politics.

I could not agree more but the trouble is I think she's got it backward. She's talking about admitting she's voting for Obama and the reaction of her conservative friends. Now (the phenomenon of conservative pundits and former generals switching teams aside) perhaps my experience is slightly skewed - living over here on the left coast and working in Hollywood. But from my standpoint this story is the kind of crap the lefties have been tossing around about how narrow-minded Republicans are for years. I'm not even going to talk about what happens if you admit you're a conservative in Hollywood - but let's just talk about friends.

My wife and I were at a party the other night with friends we know are strident Democrats. These are also friends we know not to discuss politics with. We were indirectly informed of this somewhere along the way when one of them told my wife that she couldn't talk to her sister because her sister voted for Bush. But at this party we discovered another conservative. It was secretive, quiet and clandestine. We spoke in hushed tones and furtively wished each other luck on November 4. Why did we behave this way? Because we like our friends and enjoy hanging out with them. We don't bear them any grudge or think any less of them because they're going to help drive this country into the re-education camps. No. They're nice, we get along, our kids are friends. It's OK. It's America. People can disagree. But the sad truth of it is that if we did talk politics it wouldn't be too long before we were out on the curb with the sister.

See here's the thing. And I have a little credibility (in my anonymous state) in this issue having voted for Bill Clinton over Dole. I talked that up and I didn't lose any friends. Sure I had, as Michele claims, people call me a long-haired hippy, but it was mostly in jest. Most people who know me actually, uh, know me. But here's the difference. We believe our friends are wrong. They believe (if they knew (and we know from conversing on the subject with them regarding others) that there is something wrong with us. They are incorrect, we are bad.