Cruise Observation – Why waste time looking for sharks in the blue waters ahead when a beautiful mermaid make a more enjoyable contemplation?
For many, finding a way to cope with the media spun lies, threats, and hypocrisy of the Trump Presidency can be very challenging. For this sensitive blogger, however, the stage seemed to be set on our recent tour of European transcontinental cruise back home to South Florida to reassess this menacing presence of POTUS lurking close behind. Such an eventful moment would this take place as the tranquil, island setting of Palma de Mallorca captivated my view on the outside deck at breakfast. For the first time since that fateful Presidential election, I would successfully engage in conversation with an avid Trump supporter with a clearer state of mind.
On this momentous occasion, I succeeded to connect with my chosen Trump adversary, Avery, as we initially exchanged honest impressions of our chosen careers. As she and I had both described our past careers in helping individuals in the teaching and health care and teaching fields respectively, our shared sense of empathy for the poor/underprivileged clients we had served seemed evident.Yet, when the subject turned to politics, we fiercely defended our differing voting rationales in the 2016 Presidential election.
Notably, Avery would take aim at Barack Obama as a weak President who did not deliver for all Americans what his eloquent speeches professed. Similarly portraying Hillary Clinton as the wrong choice for our nation, she would go on to defend Donald Trump’s election as the stronger choice for our country now. I noted then how she seemed “fed up” that our country had gone soft about rampant street crime, entitled welfare abuse, and ominous foreign tensions.
In my counter reply, I calmly asked Avery whether she felt today the same about Donald Trump as she did on Election Day. Sensing her tenuous yes answer, I noted how Donald Trump had built his entire election platform on a “divide and conquer” mentality that has continually devolved to bitterly disunite our country. Patiently listening to her dissatisfactions as a health care administrator, I similarly shared my inner city teaching challenges leading to teacher burnout. Setting our obvious political differences aside, our serious conversations would soon “lighten up” and thus end calmly with little fanfare.
I thus have reason to believe that if you want to get along with someone on the opposite end of the political spectrum, your chances increase dramatically if each party takes time to find “common ground for an honest relationship with each other. Being nice rather than nasty seems to also yield greater dividends then as you become willing to listen to alternative points of view. You might even imagine them under such trying circumstances agreeing with you that “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright.”