Lessons re-learned after a few days of contentious and unpleasant topics on my LJ

  1. People argue about what they came to argue about, not the topic you raised.
  2. Everything is personal.
  3. If you ask someone a question and they answer a different one, you have your answer all right.
  4. Don’t mention Canada. In any context, really.
  5. Open communication is greatly overrated.
  6. If you have something incredibly important to say, for Chrissakes don’t. And if you must, don’t do it on the Internet.

17 thoughts on “Lessons re-learned after a few days of contentious and unpleasant topics on my LJ

  1. #1 & #3 Are my biggest frustrations. Remind me to tell you my joke that was inspired by this when I see you over Thanksgiving .
    #2 ME ME ME
    #4 fudging hippies
    #5 makes me think of the twelve or so generic Radio Shack capable CB channels before the adoption of cell phones.
    Faction sucks my ass.

  2. It’s interesting that people think open communication is a good idea when we have spent so many years inventing elaborate (sometimes ridiculously so) protocols to avoid it in order to keep from getting bludgeoned/stabbed/shot. I suspect that we just aren’t all that good at it and never have been, but it’s more frustrating and less educating when it fails to end in actual bloodshed.

  3. Here is my best attempt:
    My question to my conservative friends was:
    Question #1
    Will you say anything, do you say anything, when your friends want me exiled and disenfranchised and dead?
    Yes. Through our many conversations debating issues with you, I have learned a lot with regards to how rational liberals view the world and various political issues. We need both sides. Each side gives a different, but equally important view on the same issue. Compromise is the best policy and makes the best policy.
    Question #2
    Will you stay with your party if they keep eroding the Bill of Rights?
    This is kinda a loaded question. My answer is no. If this becomes the case, I do not know where I stand then. The church consistently votes along party lines, which is lame. I would love it if there was a party that would protect the church as well as work to help all Americans succeed. Right now, that party does not exist. If we could take Howard Dean’s ability to motivate Americans and John McCain distain of injustice and corruption and make them one person, that would be a good moderate.
    Question #3
    Is there a point at which Christian conservatives could say “stop here, we don’t need a theocracy”?
    Yes, here are my lines so far:
    1. If Republicans want to form fiscal/domestic policy based upon “values” instead of common sense and equality.
    2. If freedom is coupled with Christianity when we talk about fighting the bad guys around the world.
    3. If aid of any kind to a county is dictated by the presiding religion of that country.
    4. If the definition of what is “right” changes from what is constitutionally legal to what is moral.

    1. Re: Here is my best attempt:
      Maybe you didn’t intend it that way, but your answer to Question 1 is a bit frightening to me. You’re saying “yes, I’d defend your right to live freely, because your opinions are sometimes valuable.” Which raises the question, what if they weren’t?
      For an atheist humanist like me, the only answer is “I defend your right to live freely just because you’re a fellow human being.”

      1. Re: Here is my best attempt:
        I did a word search on my answer and the word “sometimes” was not there. Do not bait people.

  4. for great justice
    You asked a particularly hard question, how do they reconcile their ideals of exclusion with the people they seem to include into daily life.
    I suspect it’s similar to the question: why do Grand Theft Auto players not run people over in real life?
    The only problem is that they vote based on the videogame.

  5. I kinda like it when people mention Canada.
    “we’re famous”
    I know this is a stupid sentiment, because we have a big ass land-mass. but..you know, it doesn’t really come up all the time. you have to live here and watch american tv every day to get it.

  6. It ain’t quite as bad as it looks
    Just remember that the ones who really *get* what you’re saying get it the first time, are glad you said it, and hence have no need to hash it out further.
    So: Open communication is not really over-rated. Filtering responses to said communication is often under-rated.
    And no, don’t mention Canada. Unless you’ve got a case of unwanted (un-American) beer in your fridge.

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