Will Our Relationships Survive Politics?

 

When I first began to lament the absence of values in politics many years ago, I was told, in so many words, that’s politics. Get over it. Politics has followed its own set of rules forever, and that was simply the way things were. I should hold my nose and vote for the least bad candidate.

Whether or not that is still true today is something we can discuss. Of more importance to me is the role politics and values play in my relationships. The people on the Left with whom I’m friends are caring people; they aren’t violent or angry. In fact, I love them in part because of their kindness (and for tolerating me!)

But I’ve become uncomfortably aware that their intelligence and kindness may not be enough to maintain our friendships. They have taken positions politically and are resoundingly on the Left. There was a time when I simply said, well, we have so much in common otherwise that we’ll be okay if we simply avoid politics.

I’m not so sure if that’s true anymore.

Since politics and governance seem to be inextricably enmeshed, I’m finding that my friends on the Left have decided that anyone who isn’t on the Left doesn’t belong in politics or governance. Of course, one could say that I feel the same way. I think the difference between us is that the values I hold, not necessarily as a Conservative, but a person who calls herself a conservative, call on me to live my values in a very explicit way. I don’t believe in forcing my values on others, but I also don’t want them to force theirs on me. Due to their values that they expect to manifest in government in a restrictive and despotic way, they are condemning my values and demanding that I compromise them for the “good of others.”

The problems arise when their choices not only limit my choices, but imprison others, too.

Let me further explain my dilemma with my own friends, some of whom I’ve discussed on this site. I will describe my understanding of values by using the Moral Foundations Theory of Jonathan Haidt. I’m going to apply it liberally in order to adapt it to the extreme polarizations that we are experiencing today, so mine is not a pure application. But I think it will be helpful in understanding the strains that are arising in my relationships, and perhaps in yours. Haidt’s model includes Care/Harm; Fairness/Cheating; Loyalty/Betrayal; Authority/Subversion; and Sanctity/Degradation. I will compare the Left and Right through these categories.

  1. Care/Harm: Although the Left supposedly lauds the care of people of color as a priority, they are carrying out their goals by chastising, ridiculing, defaming, and blaming people who are not in those categories, in other words white people, for the current state of the country, especially for what they call systemic racism. To try to ostracize the majority of the people in this country through this argument is unconscionable. Those on the Right believe that we should help our friends and neighbors, but we are not responsible for hurting the entire society, particularly for something we’ve never done. All of my friends on the Left believe this racism exists. If I asked them if I was part of systemic racism, I suspect they would say (apologetically) that I am.
  2. Fairness/Cheating: In order to accomplish their goals, the Left is prepared to redistribute the money of everyone. The “rich” in this country (which still has not been defined) have more than they need and should provide more to those who have less. This could be done through taxes. The fairness comes in regarding the need for all of us to contribute, but not in determining the amount the government should be able to steal from us. From my perspective, fairness is a factor when I point out that we all have the opportunity to rise above our current spiritual and economic state in this country. In fact, if we simply give people money, they lose the opportunity to grow in their own self-confidence and self-reliance. If I were to ask my friends about my particular situation, they would probably state that I should at least contribute to those who have less—whatever that means.
  3. Loyalty/Betrayal: Loyalty can be experienced at many levels: loyalty to the country, the state, the community and our friends and family. Those on the Left that I know would insist they are loyal to the United States, and in the next breath list all the ways we have betrayed our fellow citizens. They would state that our errors far outweigh our achievements. Their loyalty to friends and family would only go as far as the compliance of those groups to the Left’s causes; in the face of disagreement, the Left would probably at a minimum call the Right misguided, at worst, evil and hateful. If I asked my friends how they felt about my loyalty, they would probably see me as a loyal friend; they would probably see my patriotism regarding the country as primitive and distasteful.
  4. Authority/subversion: In recent months, the Left has made their disdain for authority clear. Efforts to defund the police, attack law enforcement and willingness to burn down buildings or justify the actions of those who do are frightening. Rule of law is meaningless when social justice is a priority. Although burning buildings is terrible, from their perspective these acts are understandable given the state of the country. If I asked my friends about my support for law enforcement, they would reject my information about how law enforcement has been unfairly criticized and targeted.
  5. Sanctity/degradation: Sanctity has no place in the secular Left. If anything is sacred, it is their belief in their cause. Their leaders are idolized, their goals are sacred. Of my three friends, only one is religious; the other two believe in “spirit.” I believe that my religious friend focuses on those tenets that are congruent with the Left, and ignores or re-defines those that are in conflict with it. The other two have no concern about “serving G-d,” or deferring to a higher authority, since He doesn’t factor in their lives. We don’t discuss religion, since with the two non-believers, they aren’t much interested.

* * * * *

You may have a few questions about my analysis. First, why don’t I ask my friends how they feel, rather than guess? I already know their Leftist beliefs, because at times we’ve discussed them, enough for me to know where they stand. But if I asked them how they felt about me, they would probably tell me, but it would be awkward. At times, one has said I’m an exception to the typical Rightist. Besides, in one way it doesn’t matter what they think of me. What matters is how I see them as friends.

My major questions are, do I believe I should remain close to people whose values are so different than my own? How do I feel about people who are ill-informed about the facts regarding the current state of our country? Finally, am I prepared over the long-term to avoid discussing issues that are so important to me in order to maintain the semblance of close relationships? I know there are people who are friends with people who have very different values than their own. If I consider ending those friendships, rest assured I will find out what their values are, rather than speculate.

I’m just not sure that I want to maintain those friendships.

Have you lost friendships permanently due to values differences? If not, do you think that might happen in your own life?

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  1. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    I’d like to reiterate one point, in case it wasn’t clear. I believe that people’s values–important values–are reflected in their politics. Is it appropriate to accept that a friend has differences with you in high-level values related to their political views? I’m trying to figure out if it’s right for me to accept that conflict between us and just avoid it, or to take it seriously in looking at our relationship. It seems like some of you don’t have a problem ignoring this conflict in values by simply avoiding politics. Am I hearing you correctly?

    • #31
  2. GrannyDude Member
    GrannyDude
    @GrannyDude

    Bryan G. Stephens, Trump Aveng… (View Comment):
    a

    Me, too. I’m not sure it always works all that well.

    I’ve been thinking about this again lately…about whether someone is less likely to change his mind precisely because he has been bested in battle. The experience of defeat is unpleasant, whereas the experience of discovery is fun. 

     

    Sigh. Still working on it.

    • #32
  3. GrannyDude Member
    GrannyDude
    @GrannyDude

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Rodin (View Comment):

    I had a similar problem but on a different dimension: My family are very religious and I am an agnostic. Because they are family you can’t simply not interact, but it does modify your behaviors and speech. It also robs one of a certain depth to the relationship which is regrettable.

    And I suspect that is what concerns you about your friendships: how the “no go zones” impact the depth to which that friendship exists.

    There is no good answer. There is only the question of what those relationships mean to you and whether sufficient good can be experienced within a lessened relationship.

    You know me well. The relationships are already suffering from the “lack of depth.”

    You know, one thing you are doing by maintaining these friendships is providing living, breathing proof that someone can be conservative and kind, intelligent, good-humored etc. at the same time.  That’s not nothing.

    • #33
  4. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    GrannyDude (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens, Trump Aveng… (View Comment):
    a

    Me, too. I’m not sure it always works all that well.

    I’ve been thinking about this again lately…about whether someone is less likely to change his mind precisely because he has been bested in battle. The experience of defeat is unpleasant, whereas the experience of discovery is fun.

     

    Sigh. Still working on it.

    It can work by showing the absurdity of others. Not their own personal absurdity, of course. You leave an avenue open for them to retreat.

    • #34
  5. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    I’d like to reiterate one point, in case it wasn’t clear. I believe that people’s values–important values–are reflected in their politics. Is it appropriate to accept that a friend has differences with you in high-level values related to their political views? I’m trying to figure out if it’s right for me to accept that conflict between us and just avoid it, or to take it seriously in looking at our relationship. It seems like some of you don’t have a problem ignoring this conflict in values by simply avoiding politics. Am I hearing you correctly?

    It depends on how it affects other facets of our relationship.

    I had a friend where our relationship was largely predicated on theological discussion. I was an animal at the zoo worthy of study – I took the opposite position on just about everything. He was someone I could debate with without fearing loss of friendship. I could be intense and raise my voice and there’d be no stopping the debate over hurt feelings or intimidation.

    But something changed with BLM and the increasing rise of social justice outside college campuses. He started really buying the white privilege nonsense and I’m a bit of a nationalist on theological grounds, and he had a habit of calling people who disagreed with him a racist.

    We had a hard time reconciling our combative relationship at that point.

    • #35
  6. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    GrannyDude (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Rodin (View Comment):

    I had a similar problem but on a different dimension: My family are very religious and I am an agnostic. Because they are family you can’t simply not interact, but it does modify your behaviors and speech. It also robs one of a certain depth to the relationship which is regrettable.

    And I suspect that is what concerns you about your friendships: how the “no go zones” impact the depth to which that friendship exists.

    There is no good answer. There is only the question of what those relationships mean to you and whether sufficient good can be experienced within a lessened relationship.

    You know me well. The relationships are already suffering from the “lack of depth.”

    You know, one thing you are doing by maintaining these friendships is providing living, breathing proof that someone can be conservative and kind, intelligent, good-humored etc. at the same time. That’s not nothing.

    Thanks, @grannydude. I hadn’t thought of my situation that way. That’s really helpful.

    • #36
  7. GrannyDude Member
    GrannyDude
    @GrannyDude

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    I’d like to reiterate one point, in case it wasn’t clear. I believe that people’s values–important values–are reflected in their politics. Is it appropriate to accept that a friend has differences with you in high-level values related to their political views? I’m trying to figure out if it’s right for me to accept that conflict between us and just avoid it, or to take it seriously in looking at our relationship. It seems like some of you don’t have a problem ignoring this conflict in values by simply avoiding politics. Am I hearing you correctly?

    One thing I have heard, from left-y friends: They care about one issue, for example, climate change. Since the Democrats are big on climate change, my geeky, science-type friends vote for Democrats, even if they don’t like the other stuff, and can see the problems with critical race theory, suppression of free speech, etc.  

    • #37
  8. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    GrannyDude (View Comment):
    my geeky, science-type friends vote for Democrats, even if they don’t like the other stuff, and can see the problems with critical race theory, suppression of free speech, etc.

    How knowledgeable are they about science? How many books have they read about climate change? 

    • #38
  9. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):

    GrannyDude (View Comment):
    my geeky, science-type friends vote for Democrats, even if they don’t like the other stuff, and can see the problems with critical race theory, suppression of free speech, etc.

    How knowledgeable are they about science? How many books have they read about climate change?

    That’s bothering me too. A STEM background usually leads to more skepticism in terms of anthropomorphic climate change, not less.

    • #39
  10. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    Percival (View Comment):

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):

    GrannyDude (View Comment):
    my geeky, science-type friends vote for Democrats, even if they don’t like the other stuff, and can see the problems with critical race theory, suppression of free speech, etc.

    How knowledgeable are they about science? How many books have they read about climate change?

    That’s bothering me too. A STEM background usually leads to more skepticism in terms of anthropomorphic climate change, not less.

    I hear it leads to lukewarmism. But I haven’t seriously studied the science. 

    • #40
  11. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    Percival (View Comment):

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):

    GrannyDude (View Comment):
    my geeky, science-type friends vote for Democrats, even if they don’t like the other stuff, and can see the problems with critical race theory, suppression of free speech, etc.

    How knowledgeable are they about science? How many books have they read about climate change?

    That’s bothering me too. A STEM background usually leads to more skepticism in terms of anthropomorphic climate change, not less.

    Engineering backgrounds, maybe.

    Academic science, I don’t think so. I only know two (college professors), so it’s very anecdotal. 

    • #41
  12. EHerring Coolidge
    EHerring
    @EHerring

    It is hard to deal with them because they are more emotion than rational thought. Here is a typical Facebook exchange. He has feelings on issues, that is all. He is always disagreeing with my sister and I come to her defense

    • #42
  13. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    EHerring (View Comment):

    It is hard to deal with them because they are more emotion than rational thought. Here is a typical Facebook exchange. He has feelings on issues, that is all. He is always disagreeing with my sister and I come to her defense

    You’re a good sister, @eherring.

    • #43
  14. Bryan G. Stephens, Trump Avenger Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens, Trump Avenger
    @BryanGStephens

    They never answer. They don’t have an answer.

    • #44
  15. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    On the issue of climate change the recent interview with Dr. Bastiat is revealing. If you want the short summary, start with his interview at 33 minutes in when he starts talking about Sun Tzu. 

    • #45
  16. EHerring Coolidge
    EHerring
    @EHerring

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):

    On the issue of climate change the recent interview with Dr. Bastiat is revealing. If you want the short summary, start with his interview at 33 minutes in when he starts talking about Sun Tzu.

    It was an excellent use of Sun Tzu.

    • #46
  17. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    On a matter related to the original post, should I feel happy that Mark Ruffalo acted like a decent human being with Chris Pratt? Or should I expect Mark Ruffalo’s gallant statement as a matter of course? I love that he put his buddy and his friendship above his political belief. But shouldn’t you do that automatically? I am worried that I have a soft bigotry of low expectations when it comes leftist celebrities.*

    * Is it actually bigotry when it emerges from repeated and consistent observation.

    • #47
  18. Giulietta Inactive
    Giulietta
    @giuliettachicago

    What a good post, Susan. If I am very honest I think I have lost friendships to politics. It’s hard.

    I lived in France for many years and still go back frequently to visit my sister’s family. When I last went back in 2017 I had a conversation with a close friend who insisted that Trump’s immigration policy was racist. When I defended it, I realized to her I had become someone who she didn’t relate to anymore. It was very polite but obvious.

    Nearly all of the people in my circle of acquaintances are liberal. My close friends know that I am center-right but I avoid talking to them about politics because I find those conversations unrewarding. They read the NYT and don’t notice all the coverage sounds like a dirty tabloid, they think that Trump handled CV badly with no allowance for other countries, a friend of mine said he isn’t a good role model for her young son, they have no idea what is happening with Antifa and BLM, they don’t read a variety of sources so they don’t know anything about people losing their jobs because of political correctness at universities for example- they have no idea about any of the policy accomplishments of the Trump administration. They are very poorly informed. It’s just not a conversation at all.

    Politics did not always define the friendships that people had with others but it does increasingly. Online dating is one example. My first Ricochet post was about a profile for someone who wanted to “overturn the cisgender patriarchy and guillotine the rich”. Politics are everything now about how people define themselves. I don’t want to be with someone who thinks looting is reparations, as the Chicago BLM coordinator stated in August so I’m probably part of the problem too. It’s hard to meet people to make new friends who are on opposite sides of the spectrum. It’s equally hard to avoid politics altogether. Especially with Covid and mask wearing in big cities being such a public display and now that winter is coming, where do you go to meet people? It’s gotten harder than ever just to see people.

    In short, it’s really complicated to navigate relationships of all types now.

    • #48
  19. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Giulietta (View Comment):
    In short, it’s really complicated to navigate relationships of all types now.

    I can so relate to what you’re saying, @giuliettachicago. Relationships can be hard, regardless. Politics nowadays makes it even harder. Thanks for weighing in.

    • #49
  20. Misthiocracy got drunk and Member
    Misthiocracy got drunk and
    @Misthiocracy

    All my favourite relationships occur in the PIT.

    • #50
  21. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Misthiocracy got drunk and (View Comment):

    All my favourite relationships occur in the PIT.

    Now that is sad. ;(  Then again, everyone takes everyone as they are. I’ve heard.

    • #51
  22. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Misthiocracy got drunk and (View Comment):

    All my favourite relationships occur in the PIT.

    Now that is sad. ;( Then again, everyone takes everyone as they are. I’ve heard.

    It might take a little time to get used to the PIT.

    • #52
  23. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Percival (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Misthiocracy got drunk and (View Comment):

    All my favourite relationships occur in the PIT.

    Now that is sad. ;( Then again, everyone takes everyone as they are. I’ve heard.

    It might take a little time to get used to the PIT.

    I tried it. It wasn’t for me. Plus I spend way too much time here!

    • #53
  24. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    Giulietta (View Comment):

    What a good post, Susan. If I am very honest I think I have lost friendships to politics. It’s hard.

    I lived in France for many years and still go back frequently to visit my sister’s family. When I last went back in 2017 I had a conversation with a close friend who insisted that Trump’s immigration policy was racist. When I defended it, I realized to her I had become someone who she didn’t relate to anymore. It was very polite but obvious.

    Nearly all of the people in my circle of acquaintances are liberal. My close friends know that I am center-right but I avoid talking to them about politics because I find those conversations unrewarding. They read the NYT and don’t notice all the coverage sounds like a dirty tabloid, they think that Trump handled CV badly with no allowance for other countries, a friend of mine said he isn’t a good role model for her young son, they have no idea what is happening with Antifa and BLM, they don’t read a variety of sources so they don’t know anything about people losing their jobs because of political correctness at universities for example- they have no idea about any of the policy accomplishments of the Trump administration. They are very poorly informed. It’s just not a conversation at all.

    Politics did not always define the friendships that people had with others but it does increasingly. Online dating is one example. My first Ricochet post was about a profile for someone who wanted to “overturn the cisgender patriarchy and guillotine the rich”. Politics are everything now about how people define themselves. I don’t want to be with someone who thinks looting is reparations, as the Chicago BLM coordinator stated in August so I’m probably part of the problem too. It’s hard to meet people to make new friends who are on opposite sides of the spectrum. It’s equally hard to avoid politics altogether. Especially with Covid and mask wearing in big cities being such a public display and now that winter is coming, where do you go to meet people? It’s gotten harder than ever just to see people.

    In short, it’s really complicated to navigate relationships of all types now.

    The French and British love to decry American racism but we do a far better job of assimilating different peoples than they do. It is almost a universal complaint by immigrant peoples that the Europeans are tribal in ways they do not admit or even realize so even after a generation or two, others feel they are not fully accepted. Clare Berlinski has written perceptively about this.  When the banlieues stop being riot centers for France then they can lecture us about integration and tolerance.

    • #54
  25. Giulietta Inactive
    Giulietta
    @giuliettachicago

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    Giulietta (View Comment):

    The French and British love to decry American racism but we do a far better job of assimilating different peoples than they do. It is almost a universal complaint by immigrant peoples that the Europeans are tribal in ways they do not admit or even realize so even after a generation or two, others feel they are not fully accepted. Clare Berlinski has written perceptively about this. When the banlieues stop being riot centers for France then they can lecture us about integration and tolerance.

    Yes my sister writes about that here on Ricochet based on her experience living in France. The funny thing is that after even a short time that a foreigner lives in the U.S., I don’t think any native-born American takes it amiss if that person says, “I’m American” but the equivalent case in France simply doesn’t come up with the same sentence about France- they would never say, “I’m French”. You just can’t take on French identity like that. I find it interesting that the unrest in the banlieues often comes from the 2nd generation, not the first. There is a strange nostalgia for the countries their parents left behind like Algeria. The 2nd generation was brought up and educated entirely in France and yet strikes out at the country that is entirely theirs.

    • #55
  26. CarolJoy, Thread Hijacker Coolidge
    CarolJoy, Thread Hijacker
    @CarolJoy

    I think this is a great topic for discussion, and as usual, you gave a thoughtful, insightful outline of the lay of the land.

    Neither side is blameless – had the Christian Right not spent decades telling gay people they were not welcome in their community of God-oriented believers, as they were going to hell for having sexual relationships, perhaps some of the tremendous backlash that is now upon us would have been mitigated then.

    That being said, it is also worth noting that back in the 1980’s, the KGB did a study that showed that once people are subjected to propaganda involving a big lie for a mere two months, those people held on to that belief and usually could not be persuaded that what they now believed had no relationship to the truth.

    Our former friends on The Left had been listening to vicious propaganda regarding Trump’s corrupt business practices, his racism and alliances with White Supremacism for  at least 10 months before the day of his inauguration.

    Just as importantly, they also had been carefully instructed on how to nip off debate and discussion, before that could occur. Should an individual mention even the slightest support for anything Trump said, even something as innocuous as support for his notion of a vast infra-structure re-build of America, then that individual would be  labelled a White Supremacist.

     

    • #56
  27. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    Giulietta (View Comment):

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    Giulietta (View Comment):

    The French and British love to decry American racism but we do a far better job of assimilating different peoples than they do. It is almost a universal complaint by immigrant peoples that the Europeans are tribal in ways they do not admit or even realize so even after a generation or two, others feel they are not fully accepted. Clare Berlinski has written perceptively about this. When the banlieues stop being riot centers for France then they can lecture us about integration and tolerance.

    Yes my sister writes about that here on Ricochet based on her experience living in France. The funny thing is that after even a short time that a foreigner lives in the U.S., I don’t think any native-born American takes it amiss if that person says, “I’m American” but the equivalent case in France simply doesn’t come up with the same sentence about France- they would never say, “I’m French”. You just can’t take on French identity like that. I find it interesting that the unrest in the banlieues often comes from the 2nd generation, not the first. There is a strange nostalgia for the countries their parents left behind like Algeria. The 2nd generation was brought up and educated entirely in France and yet strikes out at the country that is entirely theirs.

    Do you mean Muslim immigrants to Europe? There are many Chinese from Hong Kong in Britain and many Vietnamese in France. I don’t hear much about them. Do they feel like foreigners in their own country?

    As for America, we can’t seem to integrate our black underclass or our Native-American population. But what’s odd is that a Nigerian who is so black he’s purple integrates very quickly. I think our problem might be more of a class thing than a race thing.

    • #57
  28. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Giulietta (View Comment):
    Yes my sister writes about that here on Ricochet based on her experience living in France.

    So interesting! BTW, is your sister Toqueville-or something like that? You both are great writers!

    • #58
  29. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    CarolJoy, Thread Hijacker (View Comment):
    Just as importantly, they also had been carefully instructed on how to nip off debate and discussion, before that could occur. Should an individual mention even the slightest support for anything Trump said, even something as innocuous as support for his notion of a vast infra-structure re-build of America, then that individual would be labelled a White Supremacist.

    It’s all so sad and ugly, isn’t it @caroljoy? I had no idea how easy it is to brainwash people. That’s frightening!

    • #59
  30. CarolJoy, Thread Hijacker Coolidge
    CarolJoy, Thread Hijacker
    @CarolJoy

    JustmeinAZ (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    I guess I’m left frustrated at their lack of interest in making sure they know the facts. SNIP

    But they know the “facts” and either don’t believe them or don’t care. You’re a better woman than I am. Dennis Prager used to say SNIP that they think we are evil and we just think they are wrong. I used to agree but no longer. Now I also think they are evil. Either that or stupid. Neither of which I can tolerate.

    I have a number of acquaintances – all conservative – and just one very good friend. I knew she’d voted for Trump  but just recently found out that she registered R for the first time in her life. Whew! Thank goodness! I have two enthusiastic Trump brothers and two sisters who won’t even leave Calif until there is a vaccine. Guess who I don’t care if I ever see again.

    Unfortunately, it is we who know the facts. Those on The Left never have any type of presentation of the facts.

    I did not vote for Trump in large part because Summer of the ’16 election, I was a care giver for a 93 year old woman and friend who listened to legacy news media for hours each night. So I continually heard about how when Trump was in Georgia and Florida rallies, he ranted and raved against people of color.

    Now that I am a conservative, I have thought back to that summer. What exactly had he said at those rallies? I couldn’t tell you, despite the over twenty hours of TV news content I had absorbed over so many evenings in 90 second sound bytes on the topic. The “Trump is a racist” meme was always accompanied with videos of Trump filmed at the rallies on a large screen behind the Talking Head of the moment, who carefully explained how he was making racist statements. Since the words of the news announcer were overlaid with the large figure of Trump in the background, who  could clearly be  seen saying something, the candidate’s video image subtly enforced the idea he was saying exactly what I was being told he said. (But I never heard Trump speak.)

    This past weekend, in anticipation of the huge news releases about Hunter Biden, The New York Times published an astonishing article inside their Sunday Magazine section. The article is regarding how perhaps there is a huge possibility that there is such a thing as too much free speech.

    The reason that this was published was to emphasize for those  who read the NYT’s as gospel that we on the Right are conspiracy-oriented  theorists who are taking advantage of our First Amendment right  to overthrow the coming and very needed “progressive”  government, by offering up conspiracy theories and total lies that will de-legitimize the most wondrous candidates who have ever run for the Oval Office and WH.

    • #60
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