(Names slightly change to protect the crazy)
I got a strange text message from my friend Alice;
“Syk is coming, don’t bring up politics, please”
Syk is the nickname for one of my teabagger friends I’ve mentioned before. He and I had a racial quarrel earlier in the week that I’ll mention in a bit. I texted back
“I won’t if he won’t”
I was sorta ticked off by the message. Sure Syk and I get into political arguments on Facebook and Twitter, but rarely in person.
Needless to say, it wasn’t long before he made a remark.
Earlier in the week, Syk commented on a story. Sean Bell, who some of you might know as the 23 year old shot and killed by NYPD officers in Queens the morning of his wedding, left behind children. NYC was forced to pay his family $7 million in a wrongful death suit.
Syk said “These children will never have to work a day in their lives because their father was a thug.”
I took issue with this. He didn’t know Bell. Why would he characterize him as a thug?
What’s worse is he said this at his job (he works at an urban radio station, one of the only white guys there) and was upset that they would think he was a racist (which he is, but not for this)
He was upset that I agreed with them and we got into an argument where he said I wouldn’t understand now that I “live in the city” (he lives on Long Island)
Beyond that we had an argument on unemployment benefits, where he agreed with Republicans that they need to be cut so people “will get up off their asses and get jobs”
As someone formally on unemployment (who had nervous breakdowns over my inability to get a job). I take issue with that statement.
So last week, I posted on my Facebook status “Has anyone who believes receiving unemployment makes a person not want to look for a job, actually been on unemployment themselves?” I thought I had the argument. If you haven’t been there, like I had, you couldn’t say what a person feels in that situation.
The response I got was 10 “Yes, I’ve been on unemployment and I think that” because, you know, they weren’t lazy, but everyone else still is (I my mind I think secretly these friends of mine were lazy slobs on unemployment, won’t admit it, but say others are like that) and a few “I know someone on unemployment who won’t find a job until they run out” to “Maybe you weren’t like that, but most are”
Anyway, back to the bar scene. It wasn’t long before he brought up the Anthony Weiner tirade and accused Democrats of secretly wanting 9/11 benefits to fail. Alice and a couple of my other friends looked at me, as if to say “don’t say anything,” but he wouldn’t stop.
So I opened my mouth.
“No, the Republicans wanted to muck up the bill with politically toxic amendments that would limit help to these families. So the Democrats decided to require it get 2/3 vote so they couldn’t do it. Yet Republicans still felt the need to vote against it, because they didn’t get their way. Furthermore, if you heard some of them speak, they called it an entitlement, said it was a waste of money. it was the REPUBLICANS who didn’t want it to pass.”
Well that set him off. Alice and my other friend Meg came up to me and told me to shut up. I got pissed.
“Wait a minute. Why should I shut up. He brought it up. I’m just giving the counter argument. Why can’t I do that?”
Then I realized it. Why liberals don’t fight back. When he opened his mouth, they sat there and listened. When I did, they rolled their eyes and told me to shut up. Why the double standard?
He brought up the mosque at Ground Zero, and I pointed out that the mosque isn’t even a mosque, nor is at Ground Zero and oh by the way, there’s already a mosque near Ground Zero (Masjid Manhattan near City Hall).
The response? Let the Muslims go there then
I asked “How far back should we go? Should the British move their embassy from Washington because they burnt it down in 1814?”
The response? “Why don’t we build the mosque, let the British burn it down and then all the Muslims can go back to where they came from”
Alice snapped at him.
“Now you set him off!” (she meant me)
Set ME Off?!?!
On the way home, I asked Meg why it was such a big deal that I said something. Why was I supposed to not talk about politics, but Syk can.
She said “Why bother responding to his crap? Nobody believes it.”
Yes they do, I told her. That’s how right wing lies like death panels become narratives. Liberals think no one believes that crap and they do.
“Well then,” she said to me. “There’s nothing we can do about it if the people are stupid enough to believe that. Why bother looking just as crazy?”
Got it. Conservative nonesense= crazy Liberals fighting back= just as crazy.
The Lot in life of a Liberal.