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Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 17:30
by poolerboy0077
Did any of you, either in person or virtually through Skype or Zoom, meet up with family over the Christmas break? If so, did a political or social argument ensue? My dad recently argued with me about the homeless spike in California. Apparently he feels that the rationale put forth by most outlets that the spike is primarily due to a housing crisis is bullshit because no one would let themselves get to that point. He thinks that only a mentally ill person could possibly be homeless, and so discarded the actual statistics on mental illness in the homeless population, which is less than a quarter, but claiming that 100 percent of them are. :lol: I tried getting him to explain how that statement can even begin to be refuted since he’s transcended the data and built it into his definition but said he doesn’t know what I’m talking about. He said the only reason other states don’t have as big of an issue is simply because their police just take them off the streets by locking them up, thereby masking the issue, and that our recent spike is lax regulation, allowing them to set up tents. There was a point at which I simply nodded politely and made an excuse to get up and do something else. Yeesh.

Post your fun and bizarre exchanges with relatives about social and political issues over the holidays! :awesome: It doesn’t have to be recent ones, but they’re preferred.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 17:58
by René
Ooh, Brenden has one from seeing his mom for Thanksgiving! He made her cry. Her little Havanese and I had to comfort her. :(

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 18:29
by poolerboy0077
What was the argument over?

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 19:22
by Derek
I got in an argument with my mom and her partner about mass media, censorship, cultural marxism, and propaganda. Yes, it really was that broad. My mom's partner likes old movies, and because we were watching one (Sabrina), she started talking about how media these days is worse because it's filled with politically correct messaging ("they want to brainwash you"). I said I don't think it's a nefarious conspiracy so much as Hollywood holding up a mirror to a mildly liberal cultural milieu in order to make billions of dollars, and anyway, movies like the ones we were watching were made during the era of the Hayes Code, which is a much more deliberate example of propagandizing certain moral viewpoints, for instance homosexuality being wrong. The thing she said that I couldn't really respond to was that society doesn't have any business "promoting" homosexuality in the first place. I said gay people are part of society, so why wouldn't they be depicted? She said that criminals are part of society too. Like... okay. Freaked me out.

Meanwhile, my mom was arguing with me about how "Marxists" use this strategy of changing language to control people. The example she used was Hawaii Representative attacking Amy Coney Barrett over the use of the term "sexual preference" during her confirmation hearing, forcing her to apologize. I had to ask her what the fuck she thinks "Marxist" means and if she actually thinks democrats are Marxists. Then she started talking about how "leftists" censor conservatives on Wikipedia and social media. I pointed out that big tech are the richest companies in America, and how the fuck are they leftist (her partner actually agreed with me here). Twitter does in fact censor conservatives, but just because Jack Dorsey is aligned with the leftwing party in America does not make him leftwing in any abstract sense. I also had to defend Wikipedia specifically, because I've never seen an example of "leftwing bias" there that wasn't just reactionaries throwing a hissy fit over their views not being supported by scientific consensus. My mom told me to go read the article for "any conservative senator" to see what she was talking about, so I read Rand Paul's out loud. She said, "Okay, that one is neutral, but others aren't."

It all seems much worse when I type it out. They're insane.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 19:37
by Severelius
I can't say I follow your stories from your life, Derek, and I may be misreading this but... your mum's partner is female? Does partner have non-romantic connotations here or is your mum in a romantic relationship with another woman?

Because if so that makes her partner's comments about homosexuality even more aggressively 'yikes' than the amount of 'yikes' they would be regardless of any personal context.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 19:41
by Derek
Yes, they are a lesbian couple. Her partner is a crazy libertarian who has listened to Rush Limbaugh every day for thirty years. My mom was a normie liberal before they got together.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 19:45
by Brenden
poolerboy0077 wrote:What was the argument over?

I don't recall the specifics but I didn't say or do anything that warranted her emotional reaction. I think it's just her cognitive dissonance showing when her house-of-cards doublethink beliefs are challenged.

On another day earlier in the visit I did somewhat get through to her with this hypothetical scenario:

Let's say you have 100 people on welfare and 10 of them are Welfare Queens while 90 of them are like my mom (who has health problems that make working difficult) and actually needing assistance for whatever reason. If you make it 10% harder to prevent 1 Welfare Queen from abusing the system, you've also just prevented 9 people who actually need help from easily getting the help they need. So you've done a significant amount of harm just to prevent a marginal amount of abuse.

Anyway, at the end of the emotional argument, my stepdad gave us a book he wants us to read called Looking Out for #1, which on cursory skimming seems to be a self-help distillation of Ayn Rand. This was after he went on this little Socratesesque tangent asking us "what do politicians really want?" The correct answer, in his mind, was re-election (not power, not influence, not money… no, no), and for this reason they aren't to be trusted. René and I tried to ask how that applies to a politician running for a higher office and forgoing their current office in the process, but he brushed that point away, and he also didn't think this analysis of his applied to Trump even though he is specifically seeking re-election this very year. :facepalm2:

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 19:55
by René
Derek wrote:Yes, they are a lesbian couple. Her partner is a crazy libertarian who has listened to Rush Limbaugh every day for thirty years. My mom was a normie liberal before they got together.

Ugh, Rush Limbaugh. Brenden's dad keeps recommending him to us, forgetting we have already dismissed this recommendation before. "I think you'll like him," he says. He also seems to keep forgetting we're not Republicans, which seems to be the default assumption. :runaway:

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 20:01
by poolerboy0077
I think our parents are crazy because they didn’t go through the necessary roughhousing and bullying that we subjected others to on these forums. :shake:

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 20:02
by Severelius
René wrote:
Derek wrote:Yes, they are a lesbian couple. Her partner is a crazy libertarian who has listened to Rush Limbaugh every day for thirty years. My mom was a normie liberal before they got together.

Ugh, Rush Limbaugh. Brenden's dad keeps recommending him to us, forgetting we have already dismissed this recommendation before. "I think you'll like him," he says. He also seems to keep forgetting we're not Republicans, which seems to be the default assumption. :runaway:

There are no words that can adequately describe how glad I am to live in a country where nobody ever listens to, or recommends that I listen to, Rush fucking Limbaugh.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 20:09
by Derek
poolerboy0077 wrote:I think our parents are crazy because they didn’t go through the necessary roughhousing and bullying that we subjected others to on these forums. :shake:

You parents don't sound that crazy. Brenden and I have seen some shit.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 20:11
by Severelius
I mean after reading Brenden and Derek's stories about their parents I'm glad that my mum, while politically objectionable and objectively wrong about almost anything she ever talks about even remotely attached to politics, is at least on the more tolerable side of right-wing crazy.

It's mostly just a case of shutting up until she realises the conversation isn't going anywhere and moves on. It's easier than arguing every nonsense point with her, honestly.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 20:49
by Brenden
My mom and stepdad kept saying stuff about BLM under the assumption that the phrase "Black Lives Matter" has an implicit only in front of it.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 20:52
by Severelius
My mum thinks BLM is pointless. But she also thinks black people have higher incarceration rates than white people ONLY because black people are just naturally criminals, so I'm not surprised the idea of black lives mattering is a foreign and dangerous concept for her.

She also thinks climate change is a hoax, that Brexit is working out fantastically, and that the only reason infection rates for Covid are high is because they're testing more people.

Yes, she actually believes the Trump line that less testing somehow means less cases existing.

Yet weirdly if you ask her what she thinks of Trump, or of Nigel Farage for example, her thought is that they "need shooting." Despite the fact she parrots so much of their nonsense as if it's gospel truth.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 21:24
by erti
My mom doesn't follow politics. My stepdad is a democrat but voted for Trump and quickly regretted it. Then there's my dad and his family who seem to think if I'm against Trump (the president) that I'm against the military and democracy that I'm unpatriotic. My dad's sister and I got into an argument. Said I never worked a day in my life (which is a lie.. I worked 2 1/2 years in retail) and yet hate the government that gives me money (disability).

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 21:38
by Derek
Brenden wrote:My mom and stepdad kept saying stuff about BLM under the assumption that the phrase "Black Lives Matter" has an implicit only in front of it.

Do you think your parents respect you? This is something I've been struggling with. Since my mom became a Trump conservative, I lost all my trust in her. Her opinions on politics or morality or philosophy are worth as much to me as a toddler's. I don't think she feels the same way about me, though. She can simultaneously believe that leftists are insane and stupid, know that I'm a leftist, and not believe I'm insane and stupid. I just can't make the same leap. Not that I think she's stupid, exactly - she's a gifted programmer with deep professional knowledge. Yet, for example, she believes a report about election fraud that was so stupid and bad that it should genuinely insult the people it was made for. I don't know how to reconcile that.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 21:52
by poolerboy0077
Derek wrote:
poolerboy0077 wrote:I think our parents are crazy because they didn’t go through the necessary roughhousing and bullying that we subjected others to on these forums. :shake:

You parents don't sound that crazy. Brenden and I have seen some shit.

In March my parents argued with me saying the pandemic was nothing more than yellow journalism and political lies simply because they couldn’t accept the fact that their favorite Mexican politician who won the presidency didn’t initially take it seriously. Then they did a complete 180 as soon as he acknowledged there was a problem and suddenly started expressing their indignation and bewilderment that anyone could think that the pandemic was a hoax.

I’ve seen some shit too.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 21:58
by Derek
I don't think that's too weird. All kinds of people were doing 180s back in March. And if you're going to tie your beliefs to a politician, you could do much worse than Obrador.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 22:14
by Eryx
All my family went to my brother-in-law's country house this year for Christmas and New Year's. Since it was the first time my boyfriend and I could take time off together, we decided to ditch the holidays and travel together. Also I didn't want to be close to my grandmother after we traveled around. I was right about that, our destination was almost like Covid didn't exist -- no masks on sight, people strangely unphased. Took a PCR test yesterday though and I've still been lucky. Phew.

We're going to another country house my boyfriend's people rented for New Year's. It will basically just be a lot of alcohol, countryside music and a pool. Feels good to have fun at the end of the year and not have to waste 20 minutes sending "Merry Christmas" to everyone I know. I might skip the holidays more often from now on!

But ugh, reading some of the stories here just reminds me of the last few discussions I had with my parents over politics. It's simply becoming impossible to deal with some arguments nowadays. I try to keep away from it but sometimes I just can't, with what I have to hear.

Re: Family Arguments Over Christmas

Unread postPosted: 27 December 2020, 22:25
by René
I feel lucky having a normal Dutch family. Like the vast majority of people in the Netherlands, in US terms, I suppose they would basically range from democratic socialist to average Democrat.