Why don’t people like to talk politics?
I mean, I sort of get why. It’s a controversial and touchy subject, and tends to lead either to unproductive choir-preaching or to hurt feelings.
Still, it’s a bit ironic — the people most likely to shy away from politics are those who actually might have something productive to say. They may insist they want to keep their feelings from themselves, or that they don’t feel enough like an expert to have an opinion. That’s cool, if true. Big if, though. Because plenty of people who SHOULD feel that way don’t at all. Some of the biggest loudmouths of any political persuasion are the least informed. They don’t care if all evidence suggests that President Obama is in fact not a Muslim extremist, or that Mitt Romney is a political opportunist — they’ll believe it anyway, and will evangelize the hell out of it until you’re donning a blindfold and earplugs.
And it’s this staggeringly ignorant noise that leads normal people of sensible political persuasions to avoid expressing their views. Because politics is too ridiculous. Too far gone. Not worth their time and energy. They’re all identical stooges anyway. Shrug.
Instead, the quiet people expend their mental energy and emotions on things that carry much less weight than the direction of the free world. Things that also lead to debate, arguments and the occasional hard feelings, but somehow are different.
“How about this Iraq War, huh?”
“I’d rather not talk about it. Politics is such a touchy subject. But how about this American Idol, huh?”
“I like Ruben Studdard.”
“You like him just because he’s black!”
“No, he’s better suited for the top prize.”
“Clay looks like an American Idol.”
“Oh, I hear that dog whistle!”
“All I’m saying is that the American Idol should be American, and Ruben was born in Germany.”
“Well, Clay Aiken’s real name is Clayton Holmes Grissom! Do you really want that name holding our precious Idoldom?”
“America didn’t fight the Germans in World War II to have one of their own win AMERICAN Idol and be fat and black and all that.”
“Yeah, well, Clay Aiken is gay and worked for the Y-M-C-A!”
“He can’t be gay! I never saw him choose that.”
“You’re a closed-minded, racist, xenophobic homophobe.”
“You’re an affirmative-action-loving treason fetishist.”
“So how about that Iraq War?”
“I don’t talk about politics. Too divisive.”
I don’t know. I just think that’s weird.