2015 was a tough year. An interaction that really stands out involves a hateful note to me from someone I’d thought of as a friend for twenty plus years. Yes, I anticipated vitriol when I decided to blog. It was surprising, though, that it came from someone so close.
She posted a meme on Facebook –
from “Being Liberal with Melissa Lawrence.”
I took that to mean she was implying that conservatives are not loving or kind. I commented, “We feel the same way.” or something along those lines. Her biting retort, which I don’t recall now, was like a dare, and led me to continue. The very first blog post I’d written (Progressives Intolerant Of All Things Republican) was after she and I chatted about the presidential candidates. She’s a Bernie Sanders fan. Referencing our conversation, I copied and pasted the blog post directly into the comments for her to read. It must have touched a nerve. She replied:
Wow. I was truly stunned. Hours went by, and still I could not get over the things she’d said. I formed my response respectfully – I had no intention of getting down in the mud with her.
“I hope you are feeling better for getting that off your chest. I very much believe God wants us to love our neighbor, every one. I felt that the post in question implied that Democrats have cornered the market on loving their fellow man, which is the reason for my comment. You went on to denigrate my simple statement, so I shared my work and defended myself. I didn’t expect you to agree, nor did I expect that you, someone I have called friend, would disrespect me so thoroughly and completely.
You have known me for twenty years and are well aware that I am none of those things. I never expected to change your mind politically. I simply sought to open your eyes to a different perspective, to show you that we are more alike than different, and to explore our differences by talking about them. I am saddened to realize how poorly you think of me.
I once told you, we need each other – we have a two party system. There are supposed to be different ideas, opposing views, and lots of discussion. What is sadly lacking, however, is healthy dialog. It’s not forthcoming and, unfortunately, that’s what I have come to expect from your side. We have very different world views. There’s nothing wrong with that, as far as I’m concerned. I only debate, discuss, and argue on policy differences and individual politicians; I try not to hit below the belt and avoid downright mean posts – they don’t help to prove my point, they just piss people off. Since we do not agree, however, you can justify calling me an assortment of ugly, most unloving, and disparaging terms, rather than engaging me with ideas and intellect. That’s a shame. I understand that the purpose of those names is to shut me up, and that’s not going to happen.
I understand the pride you have in your beliefs and I have been trying to understand your side of the issues, but it just doesn’t compute. Though liberalism has an appeal emotionally, I must take emotion out of the equation because it mucks up the works. I believe that is why, ironically, artists and right-brained people tend to lean Left, and left-brained people tend to lean Right. I am fortunate to be both, so I have worked through dichotomy in my head and heart.
We represent hate to you, yet it is you who isn’t loving your neighbor. In your opinion, I haven’t earned it because we’re different. So please go back to your friends who walk and think in lockstep with you. They will never challenge you or ask you to step outside of your comfort zone, and you can continue to feel good that you are so loving to everyone. That’s what it’s all about, right? How you feel?
By the way, you have nerve to lecture me on liars when that snake, an abject disgrace to women, is leading the polls on your side. I don’t know of anyone else running for President that’s being investigated by the FBI. One more thing, you once said I really know my side, but I know both sides. I don’t trust anyone; I do my own fact-finding. You could use a little healthy skepticism. My whole adult life has been spent studying politics in depth, and I’m not the dupe. Also, here’s a hint…you really need to take a good long look at the history of socialism.
Thank you. You’ve proved the point of my blog.”
You know, I actually thought she’d apologize, but she continued ranting and I didn’t bother to respond again. She called a week later to apologize for being so mean. She felt better then, and hung up.
I did not feel better. Once out of your mouth, you can’t take your words back. That goes double when you’ve written them down. I had taken screenshots of her first diatribe. I later went back to copy the whole conversation but she’d deleted it. My husband gets annoyed because these things stick in my mind, but it’s just something with which I’ve learned to live. Hey, it’s fodder for my blog. Go ahead and insult me. I’ll try to make it work to my advantage.
I still don’t post things that I consider below the belt, but I’ve stopped worrying about posting the provocative as long as it’s the truth. I can debate all day long on the facts. I don’t need to be mean. That’s how I know I’m on the right side of the argument. I’m still sad that I lost a friend. It shouldn’t be that way but I’m not going to serve myself up for abuse. I know I’m not alone. It’s happening between friends and family across the country, like a verbal civil war.
It’s more important than ever, though, that we come out of our closets and challenge the liberal mindset. Exposing their hypocrisy and revealing truth is worth the cost. The hour is getting late and our President is encroaching on Liberty and Freedom more each day. We must force our leaders back to within the framework of the Constitution for the sake of our children and grandchildren.
Do you remember the scene in “My Cousin Vinny” when Joe Pesci is explaining that, because his client is innocent, the prosecution’s case has to be a house of cards that looks strong and solid from the front, but has nothing behind it? It occurs to me that the same applies to liberal thought. There are inherent flaws in the arguments. Liberals will dance, distract, and usually get mean, but all you have to do is stay on track, pin them down, and make them answer questions. They have no answers. Logic and liberal just don’t reside in the same space. So take heart. I believe that there are more of us than of them, and there’s a great deal of satisfaction in knowing the truth. It does set you free.