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There’s No Such Thing As Winning An Argument with Your Liberal Relatives And Friends

Happy Holidays. The Snowflake Victory Site launched by the GOP is divisive in the extreme.

I know what it’s like to watch a political argument transpire over Thanksgiving Dinner, and see someone have the last word. I know how chilly the air gets after the argument is over. The room gets really quiet and the food grows cold. And then someone (usually a maternal authority) starts another, lighter topic, hoping that the mood for the rest of the evening, the rest of the stay for their guests, can be rescued.

Those kinds of results are not advertised on the new website launched by Trump and the GOP, I visited the site myself just to see and I have to say, it’s rather unflattering of them to even build such a site. I can just imagine how many people will walk out of their Christmas dinners over the talking points on that site.

The entire site offers the proposition that you can change someone’s mind. And that “victory” over the “liberal loser” will be satisfying to say the least. This idea, that one can read their talking points, memorize them, and then steamroll their liberal friends and relatives while convincing them that Trump is good for the country, that he actually has good intentions, is wrong on so many levels.

They already lost me on the domain name. As soon as I’m objectified as a “snowflake”, I am no longer interested in the discussion. The assumption implied by the term, “snowflake” is that I’m a sensitive liberal person who just can’t handle the heat of a good talking point supported by good data, in an argument in front of all the people I love, at the dinner table. I’m always up for a debate but I’m not interested in political arguments with people I love over a holiday dinner.

Even if the argument is on the couch in the living room after dinner, and maybe a few drinks, the room will still light up in red like a Christmas tree. And I mean red as in anger. Christmas gatherings of family and friends are just the wrong place to have such an argument, unless you derive a cheap thrill out of arguing with someone you love in front of their friends and relatives, too. If you follow their advice at Snowflake Victory, get ready to be incommunicado with your liberal relatives for a few months, or maybe a few years.

I have learned long ago that there is no such thing as winning an argument with my wife. There is no such thing as changing someone’s mind. If you win an argument, then the other person loses. Do you really want a loved one, such as a family member, spouse, or relative to lose an argument in front of people both of you love? If you’re a Republican, do you really think you can talk like Trump and embarrass your relatives to cow them into believing that Trump will Make America Great Again? I don’t.

If winning hearts and minds is important to you, don’t try it at the dinner table with the people you love. Avoid making an example of yourself as someone who lacks empathy and compassion. Don’t underestimate the intellect and knowledge of your liberal relatives. Some of us don’t even watch TV. We just read and we might spend hours reading every day. And that means we’re loaded with information, ready to deploy in when confronted with someone who supports Trump.

Rather than have an argument with your liberal snowflake relatives, seek common ground. Find ways to enjoy yourself with your relatives without seeking some sort of victory over them. Nobody likes losing an argument over Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. Nobody even likes having a political argument over a holiday dinner, except, as the Snowflake Victory website suggests, some people who support Trump.

Even if those Snowflake Victory talking points are right (and I’m not entirely sure they are), you will still lose. Sure, you might have good facts and good arguments, but nobody comes to a Christmas dinner prepared for a political argument. And if you win an argument, you might lose the evening or a year with your relative.

We go to Christmas gatherings to have a good time. That’s already common ground. We share stories, rehash old jokes, one-liners, and zingers. We catch up with our relatives and friends. We are there to enjoy the Brotherhood Of Man. And you can’t do that if your plan is to score points and win political arguments.

If you really want to have a debate, write about your favorite talking point and post it on social media in a group that disagrees with you and then check out the responses you get. Or you can talk with your friends and relatives with an understanding that you’re not going to change anyone’s mind. You can have that conversation if the goal is not to embarrass or humiliate your liberal relatives. You might actually come to an understanding if you can find common ground.

But if you really want to win that argument, be prepared for some negative responses. Or maybe no response at all. If you support Trump and you believe that your liberal friends and relatives are snowflakes, that will show in your attitude and your choice of words. I’m a liberal and I can see that coming a mile away.

With that kind of approach, you might get from me a few nods, some Uh-huhs and, a few words like, “I understand”, all with a subtle disclaimer that says, “I’m not agreeing with you. I’m just acknowledging what you’re saying.” Then I’ll talk about the freaky weather because I’d rather enjoy my holiday cheers in peace.

Write on.

Husband, father, worker, philosopher, and observer. Plumbing the depths of consciousness to find the spring of happiness. Write on.

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