“So, are y’all the big D or the big R?”
That’s a question my sister heard from one of her husband’s relatives at a family gathering. She’d just met my sister, and after her name, one of the very next things she wanted to know was whether she was a Democrat or a Republican.
(Incidentally, I don’t know how Jonah Goldberg gets in my head, but I’ve been mulling this post for two weeks and he wrote this two days ago, which is typically brilliant and devastating.)
Whether you’re “the big D,” “the big R,” or something in between is completely uninteresting to me day to day.
Yeah, I’m politically outspoken, but there’s a time and a place for it. Definitely, I do it here at BoWilliams.com. I say what I think. You’re welcome to differ. If you do, then we’ll talk about it, sure.
But at church? Working with you? Going out for a drink or dinner? Your politics don’t inform how I interact with you, nor should they. I don’t roll that way. I can’t roll that way. There are people I adore whose politics I find ridiculously silly, and frankly, that’s true on both ends of the spectrum.
You know, it’s a funny thing, too. I can tell when I meet people and they’re much too interested in my politics on the front end (though not quite so brazenly that they ask me if I’m “the big D” or “the big R”). They’ll cast a veiled line for comfort on (for example) gun control or gay marriage. When they get it and I see them relax a little, I’m always curious to what degree their approval would evaporate if they knew that I didn’t fit either party “down the line” particularly well.
Hey, Bo’s a Christian, saved by God’s grace and God’s grace alone, who thinks gay marriage is a great thing. That’d be enough to plow through a lot of folks.
And then, I’d dredge most of the rest of them thinking everyone ought to carry pistols like they carry car keys or wallets.
Guess what? If you and I have made some connection, it ought not be undone because I don’t think the country should be run exactly the way you think it should be run. If you have me fitted for an ideological box, it’s practically a guarantee I can’t get in it. Let’s instead celebrate what plugs us into each other, and let that be a sufficient condition for our continued interaction.
How would that be?