japonisme: 9.11

11 September 2012


I have a friend from another online community that is causing me problems. Well, she's not causing me problems; I'm causing me problems with regards to her. Though this is not where I primarily know her, whenever I log onto my page at a site where "likes" are loudly proclaimed, there she is, my friend, up in the corner of my page, LIKING George Romney.

We did discuss Obamacare at one point; she was adamant that it was already ruining her mother's Medicare. I cannot say more. Where would I even begin? But it's me I'm worried about.

What kind of human am I that won't speak with a friend, who has, as they say, a heart of gold? I'm partly afraid that I'm not articulate enough to convince her how wrong she is, but what kind of human am I that would be so driven to do so? Perhaps it's that she's the only person I know with whom I have this disagreement, so she becomes the target for all my frustration.

When you have strenuous political disagreements with a friend or acquaintance, can you talk to them still, or are you struck dumb with what is likely a wholly inappropriate anger?



Blogger Lynne Rutter | the Ornamentalist said...

I have had to "hide" a lot of people from my regular internet reading.
In one case a friend expressed shock and learning that I was such a tree-hugging leftie and accused me of being ignorant or parroting what I and am told by elitist, socialist media (as opposed to the way some people parrot what they hear Fox or some...uh, less elitist media outlet) But I decided to treat her with the same respect I did before I knew she held such opposing beliefs. In years of knowing her it had never come up before. She's talented and warm and a great mom and business person. And I think it's the media - and the politics themselves - that makes the differences seem so huge. None of these guys are all that bad, or all that good.

11 September, 2012 19:21  
Blogger balsamfir said...

Difficult these days. I try to find out what someone means by their statements, but positions are so extreme these days that it becomes difficult to respect the thought process after a while. On the other hand, I'm starting to feel my most extremely liberal friends have become out of touch and unrealistic in ways that offend more people than they win over, while morally satisfying. Depends on how much your friend is willing to participate in civilized dialogue as compare to sloganeering.

11 September, 2012 20:03  
Blogger violetta said...

"Keep an open mind, but, not so open that your brain spills out" I read somewhere and I liked it. Same thing happens with religions. It is important to be able to be passionate and true to one's convictions, I hope some light sheds for you, you give so much to us!

11 September, 2012 20:34  
Blogger Gerrie said...

for non americans the limited and simple political choice US citizens have and obviously make is just beyond imagine. Sadly, even with such limited options, many volontarily make the wrong conclusions and descisions. Proving democracy isn't really for the people. A rotten system and polarized society should not distroy longtime friendships Lily

12 September, 2012 03:56  
Blogger lotusgreen said...

Oh, my lord -- what compassionate and insightful readers have gathered here. I am extremely grateful to you for sharing some of that wisdom.

Two of you have said things that when combined unlock the room that I have trapped myself in.

The reminder that "it's only politics," combined with an apt comparison to religion holds up a mirror to me reflecting someone who was behaving no differently than a bigot on "the other side" who I'd never thought myself to be.

Hmmmm.... actual freedom can be a daunting and even frightening thing; I'm up to the challange.

12 September, 2012 07:21  
Anonymous Evan said...

Love the friend, agree to NOT to talk politics. I have relatives pretty much constantly posting pro-Republican stuff- I mark the crap as spam. And try to be compassionate- anyone not seeing that 95% of what's come out of Ryan's moth so far as been lies & that what's come out of Romney's mouth has been sound bites containing absolutely zero information has got to be mildly retarded. Of course, things under Obama ain't that great either- so given our choices it's safe to say, America as a whole has become slightly mildly retarded.
I think the huge issue & truth again has come out of the mouths of comedians- "Obama inherited a huge mess that he hasn't been able to fix fast enough- so let's fire him and elect a president's whose agenda is exactly the same as what got us into trouble in the first place." With the added religious agenda that only gets hinted at.
I made a comment on a cartoon that prompted the meanest, nastiest personal attack I've ever received on a "social" site. Naturally, she was a "good" Christian ( kept bringing up the 10 [Cammandments] & suggesting I keep my legs closed, which suggests to me a little gender confusion)...why is it "good" Christians tend to be the nastiest, angriest most venomous people on the planet?
Must be something in the baptismal water...probably polluted...because of deregulation...go Republicans! ('scuse me, I just puked in my mouth a little).

12 September, 2012 08:39  
Blogger lotusgreen said...

evan -- you are truly inimitable. thanks for the rant!

12 September, 2012 10:25  
Blogger namastenancy said...

The whole issue of civic discourse and debate is so contentious these days that I try to avoid it completely. I don't think I'm knowledgeable enough to convince anybody who is pro-Republican or anti-Obama to change their beliefs so I don't try. The only person who I know who is extremely right wing is my brother and my sister and I both told him to stop spamming our e-mails with every anti-Obama lie that pops up or we would turn around and spam him in turn with pro-Obama, pro-feminist, pro-leftist ideas. That worked! But you can't do that with everybody and as your friends above have commented - and as you yourself know - to focus on the good in each person is probably more productive in the long run.

13 September, 2012 21:12  
Blogger lotusgreen said...

That's a very compassionate response, Nancy -- not at all unexpected from you.

14 September, 2012 12:58  
Blogger Karen Charbonneau said...

I have spent the past couple of weeks reading Richard Gordon's blog on woodblock prints and, since he follows your blog,and I've read your comments on his, I've decided to follow yours. Imagine my surprise in reading your latest to discover you're a liberal. I shall enjoy reading a kindred spirit. I have a neighbor who concluded a thought last week with, ". . . if there will be any social security." "Heavens, Erin," I said, "you sound like a Republican." "I am a Republican," she answered. "I can't stand Obama." As I felt my blood rise, I simply said, "Let's change the subject . . . how are your girls enjoying school this fall." And I think we will never bring up politics again. It's something I learned to do when I served with so many conservatives while an army officer and later with the DoD during the Reagan years. There is really no point in discussing politics with conservatives because they are now past rational thinking. Just bide your time . . . it should turn out all right.

15 September, 2012 22:13  

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