Wednesday, October 3, 2012

STFU: A Guide to Friendship During Election Season

     Ok everyone, let's take a second here and consider our current climate. I met a man named Muhammad while I was in Germany. This was immediately before we elected Obama, and we were all abuzz about him versus McCain. He told me that he admired americans during election time.Everyone has an opinion, everyone gets involved, and for 6 months, we all actually give a shit about the same thing at the same time. In taking a look at my Facebook feed tonight during the debate, all I could think was "sorry, Muhammad, but you're wrong."

     Holy tapdancing christ everyone, let's just calm down. I am watching people not only talk shit like this is a high school football game, but it's getting mean. It's getting personal, and it's getting vicious. Now I'm not one to shy away from an argument, and I've spent plenty of time talking politics. I know politics gets a lot of blood pumping. Hey, this is the fate of our country here, we all get to have an opinion, that's the whole point. The difference is that I've never called anyone an idiot for leaning a different way from me politically. I've never called them blind, I've never felt the need to resort to a personal attack to "prove" my point. As Tanios reminded me today, we had many a debate. But none of them ended with us telling the other that their trousers are unbecoming, no pistols at dawn.

     Let's look at that for a moment. We all understand that belittling someone for having a different opinion doesn't prove anything, right? We all get that, right? This is schoolyard bullshit here. All you're doing is devaluing what you're saying, and coming off as the worst possible representative of your party. Remember Howard Dean? I actually still think he would have made a good president. We might not have had another term of Bush if Dean hadn't flipped his shit at a campaign event, but instead we got John Fucking Kerry, and shit, I'd take anyone over that pile of crap. Dean got way too intense, so we didn't take him seriously. Think about it. I'll wait. You look petty, you look comical, and you look weak when you talk shit. You're never going to change hearts and minds like that. You're a joke, and we're all going to laugh at you. Stop it.

     Take a look at me and my buddy, and former roommate, Chuck. For the sake of discussion, I'm going to use broad terms in saying that I am generally liberal, while Chuck is generally conservative. We lived together for years, and not once did we have some insane and pointless throwdown over politics. I never told him that Bush survives off the blood of infants, and he never told me that Obama was not born in this country. Differing opinions are what makes this country swell. It's called mutual respect. You should try it, it's better than bath salts any day.

     I guess what I'm getting at here is this: please, shut the fuck up, and keep shutting the fuck up. I'm not saying you can't have an opinion. I'm not saying you can't have passion. Just please, don't be a prick about it. And hey, I think we'll all agree that I'm a world-class sonofabitch. But I don't need to talk down to someone because we disagree. I know it makes you feel like a badass, but all you are is a douche. Don't use the election as an excuse to show us who you really are, don't hide your true self behind politics. You are a tiny person and your only chance to feel superior is to talk down to people of other mindsets. With an attitude like that, you ought to run for office.