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The Tentacle


November 27, 2017

Why ruin a perfectly good meal?

Jason Miller

I’m a gas guzzling, gun toting, bible thumping redneck, and you’re a tree hugging, granola chewing, flag burning professional victim. Now shut your mouth and pass the gravy!

 

Now that I have your attention, I wanted to take the time to express my thoughts about the disturbing practice that has been going on for a few years now. It started during the Obamacare debate and has continued ever since. That is the practices of emailing partisan talking points to people for political discussions at the Thanksgiving meal table.

 

It bothers me that both political parties have made it a habit in recent years. I find this practice not only disturbing but downright disgusting. The two main reasons I am triggered over these talking points is that one, politicians assume that I am unable to form a coherent thought; and two, that I am somehow morally obligated to subject my family to their prepared talking points.

 

I love political discussions on Thanksgiving Day. I consider myself among those who enter them with an open mind. Sometimes I wonder if the problems facing our country could be solved by the hardest leftist and the staunchest right winger arguing over a glass of port. The only requirement would be a sincere desire to explore the problems themselves and find a workable solution.

 

I am not silly enough to think that I am the smartest person in the room all the time. My expectations are very simple in fact. I will treat my liberal friends and family with the utmost kindness and courtesy. All I ask is to be treated the same way by them. You would be surprised as to how effective this behavior is.

 

We all have friends and family who have differing political thoughts. That’s fine. In fact, that’s great! Prepared talking points are not the way to engage in thoughtful debate over anything. Personal principles are not easily summed up as a zero-sum game. Think of how boring life would be if we lived all year round in the self-censored echo chamber that these types of prepared talking points attempt to create for us at Thanksgiving.

 

Make no mistake, I am a staunch fiscally conservative Republican who is truly triggered by how much money the government is wasting while asking the taxpayer to dig a little deeper every time April comes around. Nothing burns me up faster than politicians offering to throw money at problems while hoping that the problems will solve themselves.

 

I sometimes get into heated discussions with my staunchly progressive family members. I am a firm believer that all of us can weather the storm of discussion without diving headlong into an “I’m right” and “you’re” wrong battle of attrition at the dinner table. You can disagree on the policies needed to create a better United States of America without compromising on the principles on how finally we get there.

 

Echoing partisan talking points won’t solve our nation’s vital problems. Why ruin a perfectly good meal?



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