3 Ways To Keep Political Views From Breaking Up Your Family This Year
I'm very overwhelmed by the state of the world. The sad part is I don't fully understand it all. I gain most of my knowledge from my Facebook or Twitter feeds. I base my opinions on viral videos and what is trending.
But, there is one thing I know I do understand. There is too much hate, and it is getting out of hand. I am scared.
Black Lives Matter isn't just a movement: It is a way of life we all need to adopt. I know it's difficult for some people to grasp, but when one decides to say "all lives matter" in response to someone saying "black lives matter," it's a problem.
I recently experienced a disconnect with my family because of a political disagreement over a recent FB status I posted about this issue. After the tragic Dallas shooting, I felt compelled to share a piece of my mind on social media. I wrote about the sadness I felt. I stated in the post,
Not all cops are bad, but there could be corruption within law enforcement.
I was passionate and I believed it, and I felt it in my bones.
My uncle is a police officer, and he is the greatest man I know. He has been my father when my own father couldn't be one. He has spoken about his job as a police officer with pride and dignity. He has also spoken about the horrors he has seen. It is not an easy job.
Yet, this man still comes home at the end of a work day to his family and smiles and cracks a joke. He is the man whom I look up to.
This man is not the man I am speaking about when I say there is corruption in law enforcement.
I was told recently by a family member I am ignorant and I should have all the facts before I place blame. I don't know what that means because how could I have all the facts?
This is why everyone is so angry. We all don't have any facts. All we have is an overwhelming sense of fear and frustration.
All police officers are not bad, but there are some individual humans who can be very bad, and from time to time, they happen to be police officers.
I don't know what I mean when I say there is corruption in law enforcement. It's definitely an emotional response. It definitely makes me feel better to place blame somewhere after reading articles and seeing videos of black men and women being murdered.
I don't know who to blame. But right now, I blame the lack of acknowledgement from our elders that racism is a VERY BIG problem.
I'm angry because I feel helpless. I'm struggling with the notion that just because I was raised by somebody in a particular family that I should agree and stand by that person's belief system, whether political or otherwise.
This a PSA to all parents and relatives alike who are trying to cope with having a political child who spends a lot of time on FB.
Don't go on social media!
Just don't look at what your kids posting. Don't read the stuff, and don't even worry or think about it. It will make you angry, and you will question your parenting skills. It's not you; it's your kids.
Take comfort in the fact it is a very different time now in 2016, and kids these days really like to post about their opinions, especially political opinions, on social media.
I'll let you in on a little secret: You don't have to agree with your kids.
Don't be offensive, even if you think it's the right thing.
Try your best not to respond to anything with “all lives matter” EVER. In theory, the statement is a great one by itself when it's not connected to the Black Lives Matter movement.
Yes, every life does matter. But right now, we all need to focus a little bit more on a particular set of lives. Just trust us. We mean well.
Try to learn the difference between a comment and a direct message.
You can do whatever you want, this is AMERICA! But when it comes to publicly saying things to your adult offspring, use some tact.
Would you walk into a party and tell your 25-year-old child it's time to go home? Maybe, but do you think you should do that? Maybe, but would your child like you to do that? Maybe, if he or she hated the party.
What I'm trying to say is there's a time and place for everything, and if your child is posting political articles on his or her news feeds, he or she probably believes in them.
So, commenting with reasons your kid shouldn't believe in something is like telling him or her his or her feelings aren't real.
Commenting on a post and making it about you is awkward, and nobody likes a family dispute on a social media platform -- unless we are talking about the Kardashians because I will watch and discuss that any day.
When we all were children, all we had were our parents to look up to. I never thought anything would drive me away from continuing a relationship with a family member because of a confusing, sensitive and political difference in views.
As a young woman I now see the divide between myself and my elders. I feel bullied at times into agreeing with them. We cannot and should not use the words 'I love you' and the words 'You are ignorant' in the same sentence.
If you love me, you should know I am a strong and intelligent individual who you should be proud has her own opinions.
Sadly, this is not the case for many families. The more I open up to friends, the more I'm learning each and every one of them is scared to approach any political subject with his or her parents.
Sometimes, my friends will say,
I already know where they stand, so why bother?
Good question! Why bother? I think that's question that deserves an answer.