It has been said that we don’t truly know someone until we live with them. I disagree. I think we truly get to know a person once we discuss politics. As a rule, I avoid political discussions like the plague. No good ever comes from a conversation about politics.
A few days ago I lost a friend. To be fair, it was my choice to end the friendship. Oddly enough, while it was his political post that started our conversation, it was not politics that caused me to let him go.
To give you some background…I’ve been friends on Facebook with this person for several years. He and I had grown fairly close or as close as you can get to someone over social media. We’ve had many late night chats about various topics, most of a personal nature. He was someone I’d grown to trust, love as a friend and respect. I’ve known his views on politics for quite some time and while he’d tried to get me to open up about my views, I chose to not get into that debate. He’s been someone I’ve thought of as kind, gentle, loving and caring. A person virtually incapable of hate. This is why when I read his Facebook post I was so shocked. I immediately felt the need to respond. I was so utterly confused by his attitude.
I’m sharing our conversation with you here. Maybe my response was wrong. Maybe I’m missing something. Maybe his hate is justified and I simply don’t see it. I’ve long felt there is no good reason to hate (as he states) but possibly there is and I’m unaware. People do hate but is there ever an actually GOOD reason for it? I don’t know. Regardless, what I’m sharing with you is verbatim, grammatical/spelling mistakes and all. To respect his privacy, I’ll refer to him as “X.”
HIS ORIGINAL POST: Just a shout out to all trump supporters out there if you post onto your timeline that you support Trump for president…I will remove you from my friends list without explanation or notice…I only have a certain amount of time in my life and I am definitely not wasting it on haters…this is your only warning and I don’t care how good of a friend you are I will not waiver or give second chances…hate it not great and I won’t waste time on you, you are gone…so please take this opportunity to remove yourself my feelings will not be hurt…I can then spend my time loving my friends who are not haters…
ME: X, I love you. I respect you. Always have. I’m not at all trying to start an argument but isn’t this a form of hate? This is another reason why I do not like to discuss politics. It breaks up friendships and causes problems when people can’t or won’t agree. It shouldn’t be this way. Ever. To each his own but I simply can not understand choosing politics over people we care about. In my head that makes no sense.
HIM: it is a hate, yes…it’s a hate of racists…I don’t understand them nor do I want to…I am part of the people he is supporting hate towards…I am not willing to point a loaded gun at my own head for the sake of supporting everyone’s personal opinions…
ME: Discrimination is also hate and by definition singling out and rejecting people because of their differences. Your opinion seems somewhat hypocritical. You do not support a candidate who condones racisim/discrimination but you are willing to discriminate based on a friend’s differing opinion. I’m sorry. This just confuses me terribly. I must be honest with you and say attitudes like this are the very reason people like me do not want to get involved politically. There is absolutely NO respect at all for differing opinions or life choices. Why would anyone deliberately set themselves up to be hated simply because of a ridiculous political disagreement? This is the very cause of wars and general violence between humans. I’m with your friend who said she was shocked this would come from someone as loving as you. I also am quite shocked and am very sorry you feel that way.
HIM: I’m sorry you feel this was…this refusing to interact with people who have hate towards me because of my race have no business in my life…I will surround myself with people that love me and not tolerate those who would support someone who hates me…I am not budging on this and if people are calling me a hater myself I can at least say I have good reason…I don’t wish to interact with haters…I am a hater of haters (people who hate for absolutely no reason)…
THEN THIS GUY (Patrick G.) PIPES IN WITH THIS (I do not know him at all): Lisa Summerlin what X is trying to say is if you are stupid enough to buy into Trump…good people just don’t have time for your dumbass.
ME: Patrick G., I’ve not once said I buy into Trump. The dumbass comment was uncessary.
ME: X, there is no GOOD reason to hate.
That was the end of our public conversation. I’ll note here that several of his friends agreed with me and were shocked by his attitude.
In private I sent him this message: Letting you go. I can handle a lot and your political opinions and decisions are yours and I respect that but the hypocritical attitude? That I can’t respect. So please, when you post about losing friends over your status, do not lump me in with a group of Trump followers. Let it be known that my reason for choosing to let you go was a human issue. I can’t be friends with a hypocrite and unfortunately that’s exactly how you’ve come across. Good luck to you & take care.
All of this came from someone who has always preached about loving our fellow human, accepting all differences, being kind and compassionate. So, I ask you all: what did I miss? Is his reason to hate justifiable? Does what he said make sense? Is ANY reason to hate justifiable? I go through life hating a lot of things – the unbearably hot weather during Summer in Georgia, how expensive groceries have become, when the sheets on my bed get tangled, rap music, when people do things only half-assed, dudes who won’t pull up their pants, when cats tear up my curtains, and Mexican food but are my reasons GOOD reasons? Not really. They just are what they are but choosing to hate a person – A FRIEND – because of politics? Because they don’t believe EXACTLY the way you believe? That I can’t get my head around.
I’m going out on a limb here and saying this. Politics makes people hate. There is no acceptance in the world of politics. It makes people angry. It has become ugly, violent, close-minded and quite frankly dangerous for anyone to speak their mind anymore. It’s about brain-washing – “believe what I believe or you’re wrong and ignorant!” I would bet my very life there is not one single politician in this world losing sleep over families and relationships being torn apart because of his or her views. When you choose something as volatile and convoluted as our government over friends and family, THAT is a problem. Examine yourself for a moment and contemplate whether or not you are too caught up in a matter that will NEVER give you or even offer the love, support, encouragement and friendship of your loved ones. Then I suggest you choose wisely.