I don’t get overly political on this blog. In fact, I don’t get overly political in life, for the most part. I don’t enjoy seeing people post political rantings on facebook. I don’t contribute to those rantings by commenting or liking them either – regardless of whether I agree or disagree with the author. I feel most people have a limited understanding of politics that makes things seem rather black and white. “We’re right and the other side is wrong,” or worse, the other side is evil. I can’t think of a single issue in which the issue is so easily resolved. Both sides usually have a point and they came to their conclusion for what they thought were good reasons. So why not listen and see if we can learn something.
Understand that I say all of this as someone who comes to politics with, shall we say, an extensive background and experience in politics – some I’m proud of and others I’d rather forget about. I just see politics a bit differently, that’s all. Being out of the world of politics has been a good change for me.
For example, this Primary Day has been the least exciting Primary Day for me in years. I didn’t even care who wins. I probably wouldn’t have voted for anyone on the ballot. (I didn’t vote, because I am a registered Independent). I don’t believe I should have the opportunity to have a say in who Republicans and Democrats pick as their candidates for the fall. If I wanted a say, I’d register in one of the parties. But I also don’t think non-Republican and Democrats should pay for primaries. Let the parties pay for their selection process.
I’ve had a love-hate relationship with politics. I’ve made part of my living from politics. I’ve been known to say that politics is my first language. Politics and I have a long history. I’ve learned a great deal from politics, for which I am very grateful. I’ve also learned a great deal about politics for which I wish I could have my first naivety back.
So here’s my message for this evening. Enjoy politics if you can. Have fun with it. Remember though that your party identification is not who you are. You are more. Politics is just a small part of life. If someone asks you questions about your politics, answer them and engage with someone, not trying to convince the other person, but just to understand how the other person came to their conclusion. Learn from politics. Learn what politics is really about. And when you do, make peace with that knowledge and use it for good.