March 24, 2010

Those Other People

So. Health care reform. We all know the bill passed, was signed by Obama, yadda yadda yadda. I'm not here to add more to the debate over the bill, or universal health care, or whether or not Obama is the Antichrist. Find somewhere else if you want to argue those points. No, what has struck me in the last couple of days is the number of people I've seen online who have made comments along the lines of "how on earth did this pass when the entire country is against it?" or "no one wants this reform, our representatives are ignoring the will of the people!"

Ahem. I have news for these folks.

The entire country is NOT against it. Yes, there are protests and a lot of very vocal people who are against it. And there are of course those who are for reform but don't like this particular bill. But it's not everybody. Thinking back to 2003 and the invasion of Iraq, I don't think I talked to anybody who was for the war. That doesn't mean they weren't out there. It doesn't even mean I didn't know anyone who was for it. I just wasn't aware of them. I think what happens is that sometimes we get so wrapped up in conversations with friends and family, who typically have similar values and opinions to our own, that we forget about Those Other People.

For the most part, Those Other People are also intelligent, thoughtful, and caring people. They just disagree with you. Maybe you ignore them (I know of a couple of people who have taken to deleting liberal or conservative friends from their Facebook lists). Maybe they've kept quiet for some reason. I know I despise being painted as a "stupid liberal". "Heartless conservative" isn't any better. So it easily could be that Those Other People you know are more interested in hearing the news of your life than they are in getting into a pissing match over politics. Whatever the reason, we need to remember that the people we choose to talk about the issues with are virtually never a representative sample.

ps-This also applies those times when you feel like the only conservative/liberal/moderate around. You're probably not.

1 comment:

red pen mama said...

Can I just give you a standing O for this?

*clapping wildly*