Mixing Politics with Anything Gives You Politics. As someone that I respect recently said, “I don’t think this qualifies as a rant…” I’ve reached the point that I’ve just grown weary of the idea that we can no longer discuss anything without politics hanging like a Damoclean Sword over everything in our lives.
When I Was Growing Up
I was fortunate to be one of the less fortunate kids in the wealthiest public high school in Albuquerque, NM. I wasn’t angry or resentful or needing to preach my disdain for their parents who made routinely more profitable decisions than my parents. They were my friends and I did not see them as privileged and myself as underprivileged. That is a political reframe and I decline to have my experience reframed to a victim stance.
Maybe I was a bit jealous at times, but I never once hated the success of another person. I wanted to learn from them and see what my options were. And learn I did. I learned that “rich” kids struggle with their parents too. I learned that being ignored for work hurts a little differently than being ignored for more selfish endeavors. Selfish in that they did not benefit the kids who suffered. The kids that I went to school with could see the benefits of their parents being at work a lot. Jeeps, BMWs, trips, etc. I was happy for them; even from the backseat of their new car or the front seat of my way less than new car. While we occasionally had discussions on politics, it was the exception and not the norm.
Fast forward a few years and then fast forward a few more
Now it’s all about politics. When you mix friendship with politics, you get politics. By mixing entertainment with politics, you get politics as entertainment. When you mix athletics with politics, you get fans who have to choose whether or not to support their favorite athlete due to their politics. When you mix friendship with politics, you get a strained friendship due to politics. Most don’t choose politics over their friends, but they do choose not to have conversations with really loyal, caring and smart friends because of the political land mines that are now part of our friendships. You end up just getting politics and often dividing our friendships by political views.
Now we see medicine mixing with politics. What we now have is trust, or mistrust, for people based on their politics. We can’t even allow a worldwide pandemic to remind us of what’s important; each other. We mixed medicine and politics and got politics.
I choose not to make everything about politics. Having friends from both sides, I constantly read things from both perspectives. I do this because I care less about Who, What, Where and When than I do WHY. Why do you think like that? Why are you not doing well in this crisis? The most important question to me is “Why?” Why are you afraid? Why are you angry?
As a result, my politics are simple. My belief is that we were founded by some good men who wrote a great document. In that document, they defined the limits to our government and they also defined the process to update or amend that document. We’ve done it before. We don’t seem to want to go through the trouble again. As a result, we’re left with anger and fear. My rights don’t end where your fear begins and your rights don’t end where my anger begins.
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