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Old 07-19-2016, 12:35 PM
Johnny L.A. is offline
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Do you discuss politics with opposite-leaning family members?


Do you? How does it go?

Me and an uncle discussing politics.
  #2  
Old 07-19-2016, 12:37 PM
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Doesn't go well at all ... they won't listen and you always get a retort, but if they're buying dinner I let it slide.
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Old 07-19-2016, 12:59 PM
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Not anymore. It's not as much fun since my uncle has gotten crazier. Last family get-together, he was telling us something about Obama, the Bible, and UFOs. The one before that, he gave us a graphic description of what Muslims do to goats (complete with pantomime).

The other uncle isn't much better. What is it with uncles anyway?
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Old 07-19-2016, 01:01 PM
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Sort of. Several members of my family are much more prone to leftist conspiracy-theories than I am (e.g., NCLB was a deliberate attempt by Republicans to destroy the public school system), or more prone to woo ("Try this homeopathic remedy, it worked wonders for my children!"). One close relative thinks the space program is a complete waste of energy.

I sometimes will get into it with them, but when my better instincts reign, I don't.
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Old 07-19-2016, 01:02 PM
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OMG, you guys are adorable.

I can't discuss politics with my family. Whenever I am right, or make a point that hits home, or even have a good debating tactic, I get shut down with "You're just a kid, you don't know about the real world."

I'm 40, btw.
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Old 07-19-2016, 01:28 PM
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With my family, I've learned that the way to deal with this is to cherry-pick and select something relatively obscure that nobody can really refute. For instance, don't say, "I oppose Political Party B because they are (liberal, conservative)." Say, "I think Political Party B made a bad decision with Airport X, because they insisted on expanding Airport X in an increasingly crowded city, despite the fact that the runways are dangerously short and it has tall buildings nearby which are dangerous for heavily-laden aircraft upon takeoff." Who can argue with that?


I have an aunt who believes that the Moon landing was a hoax, that 9/11 was an inside job, though. Not sure how to refute that, stating the obvious doesn't work.

Last edited by Velocity; 07-19-2016 at 01:33 PM.
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Old 07-19-2016, 01:34 PM
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Depends. My older brother and baby sister have different opinions on me on several ssues, but they're both fairly rational, and politics is less important to them them familial concord so arguments do not grow rancorous.

My now-deceased older brother was a self-righteous rightie who believed in reparative therapy for homosexuals and called abortion providers murderers. We did not discuss politics, but then we rarely spoke.

My little sister agrees with me on most issues but is too passionate for my taste. We don't talk politics.

My other sisters are not strongly political, so it isn't an issue.
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Old 07-19-2016, 01:35 PM
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I avoid the topic, but when they want to talk politics I listen. I maybe only drop a few points here and there, keeping it light. My parents, Reagan voters when I was a kid, have drifted way, way far left. They love Bernie. My siblings followed them, I mostly stayed put.
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Old 07-19-2016, 01:43 PM
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I don't talk politics with pretty much anybody, in particular family.
  #10  
Old 07-19-2016, 01:44 PM
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My dear mother is a HUGE GOP supporter, always has been. She cannot resist sending my RNC and other right wing propaganda.....unless he emails have no subject line (or at least one i understand) I delete her emails unopened. The (typically forwarded emails) will 9/10 slam Hillary, Obama, support our police state ...bash LGBT ....you get the point. My sister, the person that keeps me from being the "black sheep" of the family gets them too.

While we both love mom dearly, we do not share her demented Ideology. We never discuss Political or current event issues with her.

Quite surprisingly my mom has no issues with marijuana. Neither does my moderately right wing older brother...his first question to me is always...got any buds??
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Old 07-19-2016, 01:50 PM
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NO!

NEVER!

I don't talk politics period, even with the ones I agree with.
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Old 07-19-2016, 02:10 PM
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While I make no secret of my contempt for Trump, I recently made the mistake of voicing my views on socialism to a relative who I didn't realize was a staunch Sanders supporter. Oops.
  #13  
Old 07-19-2016, 02:17 PM
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I am republican but have no use for Trump, Cruz, Ryan, the Tea Party, the religious right, fox news, and many other things. So I avoid talking about it.
  #14  
Old 07-19-2016, 02:20 PM
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Relative: "Did you hear what Obama is going to do now?"
Me: "It sure looks like rain."

I refuse to engage.

ETA: One of my nephews wore a shirt Sunday that said in large, black letters: "FUCK THE POLICE". It was an old t-shirt. Luckily, no body said anything.

Last edited by kayaker; 07-19-2016 at 02:22 PM.
  #15  
Old 07-19-2016, 02:23 PM
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I should point out that while my uncle and I are on opposite ends of the political spectrum, we do get along well. I told him about the picture I wanted to make, and he said it would be funny. We're not actually fighting. Just so no one gets the wrong idea.

Generally, politics were not discussed.
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Old 07-19-2016, 02:44 PM
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I get along with the more passionate members of my family, whether or not I agree with them. I prefer an apathy for life to an ideological one. I especially get along with people who can argue about identifying principals and subsequently hold the other person in higher regard for having substantiated their ideals.
  #17  
Old 07-19-2016, 03:04 PM
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FIL is a big Pubbie supporter (as well as a bigot - not that the 2 are necessarily the same.) Several decades ago I used to sorta get off on getting into big debates.arguments w/ him, but I grew out of that by the time I was 30 or so.

Don't see him very often anymore (and don't miss him). This past Jan, however, we saw him over his b-day. I asked him who he liked among the case of announced candidates. He said he really liked Trump, but thought Carson had some good ideas. (I don't believe he would have ever supported a person of color.) I immediately dropped the topic. Never liked or respected him. Just kinda shocking when you run into an ostensibly sentient being who could say such a thing...
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Old 07-19-2016, 03:13 PM
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No. You have to live with them. We only discuss trivial topics.
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Old 07-19-2016, 04:08 PM
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Nope. When my brother and sister were alive, I refused to be baited into a pointless argument. My brother and BIL would say outrageous things in my presence, but I always refused to engage. The only time my sister actually said anything to me, it was along the lines of "How could you grow up in this family and be a Democrat?" I asked her if she would like to compare life experiences with me, choice of life partners, etc., to hear my reasons, but she demurred.

I'm pretty sure my cousin is a righty, but we're both respectful enough of each other not to talk politics. I have no problem rebuking nieces and nephews, however, when they say something completely bone-headed.
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Old 07-19-2016, 04:14 PM
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By and large, yes, but we're all very sensitive to that dreadful point where it isn't fun any more, and we're all very good at calling a break when that point arises.

My b.i.l. and I disagree over Israel/Palestine. We can't even begin the discussion; the point of "not fun anymore" arrives at the very utterance of either the word "Israel" or the word "Palestine." So that's on our big taboo list.

With most other disagreements, we can at least explore 'em a little, probing the topic gingerly. Like a bone-setter probing for a break. "Does this hurt?" "No." "Does this -- " "HOLY GOD DAMN SON OF A PUKE, OW!"
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Old 07-19-2016, 04:24 PM
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Having attended an aunt's 90th birthday party, with practically the whole clan there, my FB circle is expanding. Today one of my cousins 'liked' a meme that said 'Blacks sold blacks into slavery', 'All ghettos are run by Democrats', basically 'Stop whining and take responsibility for our racism.' I'm not going to get into it with her. But I do wonder how another cousin, who is Black, puts up with seeing stuff like that from family members -- especially his sister-in-law.
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Old 07-19-2016, 05:22 PM
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Never. What did Mama say about conversation in polite company? No politics and no religion.
  #23  
Old 07-19-2016, 05:40 PM
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But sex is still okay! (I have a really naughty-minded family!)
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Old 07-19-2016, 08:01 PM
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I guess I am lucky since all my relatives are strongly supporting Hillary. Some of them, including my wife are kind of infatuated with Bernie, but she, at least, recognizes that he would not be a good candidate. I think my sister's BF likely supports Trump, but I haven't seen him in a year and a half so the question hasn't come up.

My late mother thought that Nixon should have been required to ring a bell and say "Unclean, unclean" when walking in public, so you can see where my politics come from.
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Old 07-19-2016, 08:30 PM
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Through the Reagan years, it was fine, but the conversational shift towards mean streaks and pure nastiness happened right after Bush lost to Clinton. After that, I didn't reply when it was brought up when I was in their houses & they didn't reply if I ever brought it up under my roof.

This year, a few were Bernie fans that hadn't been on the (D) side in a long while.

Also, Facebook complicates things because there are some people on there who will take it as a personal affront if you mention or join in the conversation about speech plagiarism at the GOP convention.
Like I invented plagiarism yesterday Just To Embarrass ________ (insert current wives name here)
  #26  
Old 07-19-2016, 08:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trinopus View Post
But sex is still okay! (I have a really naughty-minded family!)

There's a typo in your post there.
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Old 07-19-2016, 08:46 PM
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I had to wrack my brains to think of which family members I might disagree with. The closest I can come are the ones from Arizona who think that all the water in Colorado River is theirs, and want to dam the Grand Canyon so that people stop stealing all of their water. Discussing river systems and ecologies, the state and international politics involved in this project, or even the destruction of a National Park, is pointless.
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Old 07-19-2016, 08:53 PM
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I was relieved recently to find that in between horrifying views on marriage equality ("why weren't civil unions enough for them?? Man/woman!!11!!), we all agree that Trump is a very very bad idea. I will take what I can get.
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Old 07-19-2016, 08:56 PM
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did you read my pit post the other day http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/...d.php?t=798663 ?

the sadder thing about it is not only does my family believe it apparently 70 percent of the area I live in does too ......... so I just let let them rant and come on here for sanity ......

Last edited by nightshadea; 07-19-2016 at 08:57 PM.
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Old 07-19-2016, 08:59 PM
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There's a typo in your post there.
??? I'm whooshing myself, but I don't get your joke.

(Other than that "Sex is okay" is clearly a grievous understatement: sex is FANTASTIC!)
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Old 07-19-2016, 09:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trinopus View Post
But sex is still okay! (I have a really naughty-minded family!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Grrr! View Post
There's a typo in your post there.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trinopus View Post
??? I'm whooshing myself, but I don't get your joke.

(Other than that "Sex is okay" is clearly a grievous understatement: sex is FANTASTIC!)

Butt sex is still okay!

Get it now?
  #32  
Old 07-19-2016, 10:03 PM
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Being US Latinos Republican hate is basically standard so it's not an issue i have to deal with. I am good friends with a couple Trump supporters though.
  #33  
Old 07-20-2016, 05:49 PM
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Since we are all now adults, what purpose would such a chat have?

They are not going to change my opinions, nor am I likely to change theirs.

No reason to confirm, for the 14,782nd time, that we disagree.

(plus, I am so much smarter than they, it would be like rubbing their noses in their ignorance)
  #34  
Old 07-20-2016, 07:04 PM
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I have an aunt who has been active in Republican politics for decades, attending the conventions as a state delegate, and was even on Mike Huckabee's political team. She's so Republican she thinks Reagan was one of our greatest Presidents.

So the family tries to avoid politics in general, except for simply mentioning election results, or plans to travel to the convention. My aunt knows she's right on all things political, and how can you discuss that?
  #35  
Old 07-20-2016, 07:12 PM
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I don't discuss politics with anyone. It never ends well.
  #36  
Old 07-20-2016, 08:31 PM
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Not successfully. My sister and I have jointly agreed to shut up.
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Old 07-21-2016, 05:39 AM
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There's no real point. They can agree with me on everything, but abortion and gay people are the only things that matter.

My parents are a bit better than most, but tend to wind up going with what everyone else around them is doing in the last minute. They were all gonna vote for Obama until the last minute back in 2008.
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Old 07-21-2016, 12:42 PM
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Some of my relatives still refer to our president as Obummer.

Survival tactics...
  • Oooh! Is that Sharon's potato salad?
  • I thought we had the cicadas a couple of years ago - think I've got some stragglers in my yard. Have you had a lot of bugs? Think they'll go away or should I spray them?
  • My tomatoes aren't growing well. How do you get yours to grow so nicely? Fertilizer? How often do you water them?
  • <jabs arm with anything handy> Does this look infected? Think I should see a doctor about it? If I scoot now, I think I can get to the urgent care at the drugstore before they close.
  #39  
Old 07-21-2016, 12:47 PM
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The number of issues on which I disagree with the Right and the Left are about equal, and there are no issues on which I'm moderate. But I mostly just roll my eyes.
  #40  
Old 07-21-2016, 12:59 PM
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I don't discuss politics with anybody.
  #41  
Old 07-21-2016, 01:22 PM
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No, those from the opposite side are pig-headed and won't listen to reason, anyway.
  #42  
Old 07-21-2016, 01:33 PM
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No, not even a little bit. Not when baited. Not even when Iím told what I believe because of the party I vote for even if Iíve never expressed an opinion on the subject in my life. When the discussion turns to politics, I stop talking. Completely. When asked a direct question, I tell the person ďI donít discuss politics or religion with anyone for any reason.Ē Then I stop talking again.

I used to engage in these pointless conversations until I realized that people only got angry and no one ever changed their mind. So to keep my blood pressure and anxiety at a healthy level, I refuse to engage and let the other person turn red and reach for the Xanex.
  #43  
Old 07-21-2016, 02:21 PM
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I try not to but my dad likes to bait us. He's a drunk opiate addict and a retired guy who watches Fox News all day, when not listening to AM talk radio, so he has no compunctions about saying the most awful, vile things, right out loud for anyone to hear. He thinks his audience is the same as it was 30 years ago in the factory break room but it turns out my brother and I (said audience) are actually good people.

Everyone else I know is either like-minded or classy enough to shut up.

I have to keep reminding myself that my father is not my father anymore. It's drugs and boredom talking.
  #44  
Old 07-21-2016, 04:00 PM
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Not quite two years ago, after saying grace at the Thanksgiving table, my father went on a rant about welfare cheats and the like.

After the fact, I let several family members know that I was seriously offended by this, as Thanksgiving is about giving thanks and sharing with people and this was the very opposite of Christian. That if it happened again I would walk out and never return.

It got back to him (as I expected it would) and I haven't heard any such rants at family gatherings since then.

On the plus side, my 24/7 Fox News watching parents are so horrified by Trump that they cannot vote for him and may not vote at all for the first time in their lives.
  #45  
Old 07-22-2016, 08:57 PM
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Never. Pure and simple. NEVER!
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Old 07-24-2016, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Barkis is Willin' View Post
I avoid the topic, but when they want to talk politics I listen. I maybe only drop a few points here and there, keeping it light. My parents, Reagan voters when I was a kid, have drifted way, way far left. They love Bernie. My siblings followed them, I mostly stayed put.
My father is the same way, a Reagan voter in the 80's who has gone far left and is now a Bernie Sanders supporter. I've stated before in other threads how he is basically a left-wing equivalent of the conservative relatives that liberal SDMB members are always complaining about: someone who can't seem to understand that everyone around them doesn't want to constantly hear their opinions, and are always ruining innocuous, pleasant Thanksgiving dinners with their rants. I wish I could avoid discussing politics with him, but absolutely anything* will set him off. You try to keep things safe by making a nice comment about, say, the weather--"what a nice day we're having, good thing it's not raining"--and that will trigger in his mind the thought of climate change, and the next thing you know he's ranting about how our state government failed to charge petroleum companies hefty fees for fracking, so clearly somebody's getting paid off, because in this country all our politicians are corrupt sellouts to the highest bidder bought and paid for by lobbyists funded by rich corporations run by plutocrats who get away with paying no taxes because they've rigged the system to their own benefit blah blah blah.

I recently spent some time with him and it was almost unbearable. Come to think of it, he was lamenting how he doesn't get to see me very often, so I'm considering using that as a bargaining chip, and telling him if he doesn't agree to shut up about politics while in my presence once and for all, I'm going to refuse to associate with him.

*Or nothing. Literally. Once, during the 2000's, we were on a hike together; we'd been hiking for a good 20 minutes in silence, and suddenly, out of the blue, he turned around and began "and another thing about Bush..."

Last edited by Arcite; 07-24-2016 at 03:44 PM.
  #47  
Old 07-24-2016, 08:43 PM
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Quote:
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My father is the same way, a Reagan voter in the 80's who has gone far left and is now a Bernie Sanders supporter. I've stated before in other threads how he is basically a left-wing equivalent of the conservative relatives that liberal SDMB members are always complaining about: someone who can't seem to understand that everyone around them doesn't want to constantly hear their opinions,
Yeah it's amusing the implication you get from a forum like this that that is any more common with right leaning than left leaning people. IME it's a personality type pretty evenly distributed across the spectrum IME, and as in your example not a few people swing from being vociferously at one extreme to the other during their lives.

In our family my liberal brother is the one who usually starts in with politics. He's not far left, but his SO is a lot further left, and others are conservative or rightist populist (ie pro-Trump, or I assume so in case of ones I haven't seen things heated up, I hope it's over with by the time we meet again). Not a good idea.

Most people live in a bubble politically with like minded people most of the time, and/or don't have any original thought on politics or much knowledge of anything beyond their own lives. Politics for them is a social exercise in conformity, or deliberate non-conformity if that personality type. There isn't anybody in my extended family in the US who has a background of knowledge to make their opinions of US politics of any real interest to me. I'm interested in my non-US relatives opinions of politics in their country, but naturally that's not as sensitive.

Stuff related to sexual orientation or race goes even beyond 'politics'. You have to have a screw loose IMO to debate stuff like that face to face.

Last edited by Corry El; 07-24-2016 at 08:47 PM.
  #48  
Old 07-24-2016, 09:11 PM
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The bruises around my neck usually are gone soon enough ... small price to pay to get my sissy-in-law wound up about taxes ...
  #49  
Old 07-25-2016, 08:46 AM
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I was at the inlaws this weekend and went out for dimsum with my husband's aunt, and as we were walking, she started talking politics. ugh! I don't think anybody in my family or his is going to vote for Trump, they all think he's a crazy SOB, but she started talking about how "crooked" Hillary is.

It's like the party of personal responsibility (hahahahaha) has spun it so much, that everyone believes it now, that Hillary is crooked. As if Trump was straight!

I changed the topic to hats -she had given me a new one - but she changed it right back.
  #50  
Old 07-25-2016, 09:12 AM
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General all purpose comment:

"You know my politics are very different from yours, right?"

generally followed up with

"Well, since you know I'm not going to agree with you, I don't know why you insist on bringing such things up. Can we avoid that in the future?"
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