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Thursday, May 18, 2017

I just met a trump supporter

Wow. I'm still in shock. Total shock. Just when you think you're safe. Where else are they hiding?

I mean I know my liberal bubble is massive. Most if not all of my peeps think Trump is a total freak show, destined to kill us all. I speak almost unequivocably against Trump in mixed company, fairly certain most of the people I speak, meet or like agree with me.

Then today. In passing. I mention something about Trump fans and a friend mentions that a woman standing next to me is a trump fan.  I dead stopped. Dead. Stopped. How is this possible? Tara? (name changed to protect the innocent) How is Tara a Trumpie? How can she be for everything I am against and vice versa? How can she support and admire this terrible terrible human being? I just had a lovely conversation with her. I like her! She's nice! I am floored. I now am questioning every nice thing I thought of her 5 minutes ago. I must have been wrong. She is awful. Right?

This is our problem, is it not? How do we reconcile such DRASTICALLY different world views with each other? How do we like the person who approves of everything we hate? How do we talk to the person we now know insane or ignorant or hateful or all of the above? How do we live together in this world?

I honestly don't know. I have no openness in my heart yet for that. Too many innocent good people  have been and will be hurt by that man. Too much is at stake and too much has already been lost. 118 days in.

Jaw dropped to the floor, I ignored this shocking revelation and kept on talking about whatever I was talking about. What was the alternative? At that moment, I didn't have one. I wish I was better prepared. I wish I could have said, "Oh you're a Trump supporter. Tell me more!" I wish I had said, "Are you pleased with all the decisions, threats and idiotic choices he has made so far? Are you okay with his lies? His ego? His relationship with Russia?"

But I was too shocked. Too assuming of my own bubble. Too scared to start a conversation I know has no way out because I know I am not willing to budge. I know there is no compromise here. I am literally unable to see your side of the argument. I want to be on the right side of history. I know I am on the side of justice and fairness and kindness and goodness. She is not.

So, what's the point?

How do we go on from here?

1 comment:

  1. You expressed a thought I think many are having. Often I find myself dismissing Trump supporters as having no empathy, and by doing so am I having no empathy for them? When I speak of them as being against an inclusive society, am I not automatically not including them? It is a tricky balance, but I try when talking to an individual to remember that this is an individual, not a representation of Donald Trump, that this person's existence matters more to me than Trump. I also know if I start off like I'm primed for an episode of Crossfire there's little chance of a duet. So, I do not always succeed but I try to step back, to listen with respect, and then say what I think in a "this matters" way and not "this is why you are wrong" way. That person you are kind to who supports Trump, if they listen to you being honest, if they read your book, some things will come across and it might not be winning the battle for her mind against Trump infection but it might be an even bigger wider and deeper change.