Monday, July 28, 2014

Keeping the Lines Open

I have this dear friend (no really, I do, this is not a lame metaphor for me but I don't want you to know who I'm talking about sort of thing) that I've known for thirty years. See, it isn't me, I've known myself for a much longer period of time. While we chatted over beers the other night he admitted to me that he had moved even further to the right politically in the last year. I pointed out that the important thing to remember is that we are still friends and able to talk about these things over a beer. He said that he had recently stopped contributing financially to public broadcasting because of their liberal slant. I remain convinced that people who claim this bias as fact have likely abandoned public broadcasting for right wing, pundit-heavy "news" sources that reinforce their already held, deep-seated beliefs. I confessed that I remain a public broadcasting supporter and listener. It complements my liberal, tree-hugging, socialist, freelovehippie tendencies. I think that my friend is afraid President Obama is bent on taking his guns away from him. Maybe even that our president might not be an American. Fear breeds fear and listening only to those who think like you reinforces those fears. If he's fallen into that worst of mindsets, confusing opinion with fact and opining with journalism, that may end up being a dealbreaker for me. I enjoy the discussion. The only way I can learn is by being exposed to new ideas and knowledge outside of my bailiwick, and I enjoy learning new things. I hope to continue to have the occasional conversation with this friend over a beer or two. He is intelligent and kind-hearted and generous and funny and I enjoy his company immensely. I'm certain he feels the same way about me despite our vast political differences.

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