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Random Thoughts About Whatever Comes to Mind

Maggie's Political Maxims

Whenever elections come around, especially this one that must be breaking all records for persistent unpleasantness, I am reminded of my grandmother Maggie. She was smart, a constant reader, and an obsessive follower of politics. Totally opinionated, of course, but with very strict rules about where and with whom those opinions should be shared.
 
"A lady or a gentleman," she would say, "never discusses sex, religion, politics, or money." What she meant, of course, was that one never discussed them unless one was absolutely certain that the other party to the conversation was in total agreement with what one would say. Her reasoning was simple. These were all topics about which people tend to feel strongly. Words are, she knew, powerful and, once spoken, linger forever in the background of any relationship, no matter how strong or long-standing. The wrong words could taint forever lifetime associations.
 
"You may never know," Maggie said, "if you're embarrassing someone or even hurting their feelings when you start making pronouncements about these things. Is the risk worth it? Do you really care more about some politician or funny story or showing off or even what the preacher said more than you care about the person to whom you're talking? Think about it before you open your mouth too wide."
 
Having said that, I feel compelled to repeat my personal favorite of her political maxims. "When a politician starts talking about virtue and family values, lock up the silver and all the pretty daughters."
 
Regretfully, RIP Maggie. And, totally non-regretfully, RIP sooner rather than later this tsunami of political hatefulness.