Political Beliefs Are A Dealbreaker For Me, And I'm Not Going to Apologize For It
We live in politically charged times, that’s for sure. The only time our country was more volatile was during the Civil War, where Americans were expected to kill other Americans. We aren’t at that point, for the most part. We still expect a certain amount of decency and politeness from our neighbors.
For years, people typically laughed off racist remarks, ignored it, or otherwise tried to overlook those kinds of comments when they came from friends. I ought to know, I used to turn the other cheek, even when people would directly attack my genderlessness or my choice to live an alternative lifestyle.
For the most part, mainstream Americans are told to ignore or overlook political differences. They are even told to be civil when their own beliefs, nationalities, gender, religion, or sexualities are attacked. It’s the polite thing to do, right?
Well, yeah, it’s polite, but it’s not wise.
After years of playing nice with people who vote to have my rights taken away, I’ve started to put my foot down. Nowadays, having opposing political beliefs has become an instant dealbreaker for me. I can no longer tolerate it after seeing the damage it’s doing to everyone I know. I also refuse to apologize for it. Here’s why.
Political beliefs mirror your personal beliefs.
During the toughest times of my life, I found my way through people of all walks of life, all religions, all races, and all genders. I learned that you don’t have to be a certain type of person to be a good person.
The tolerance and acceptance I found in people was what made me realize that we are all human. We all have needs. We all love. We all cry. We all have the same instincts, the same desires, and the same biology.
It doesn’t matter if you are gay, straight, white, black, Christian, pagan, or anything else. We are all human. We all deserve the same rights and the same shot at joy. My political beliefs reflect that.
We live in a bigoted world. I think prejudice is inherently wrong. I see it as hurtful for all involved. That’s why I vouch for protected classes, why I want to see social programs start, and why I want to see discrimination criminalized.
A person with opposite beliefs thinks they are better because they were born differently. They may even hate me for being born queer, or for having friends of different backgrounds. To me, that reflects a mentality that is seated in bigotry and hate.
I don’t want anything to do with someone who will judge me, hate me, or attack my friends based on their race, religion, or class.
There’s also the fact that their political beliefs are an attack on me.
I’m queer. I’m born female, identify as genderless, and have no interest in raising kids. My political beliefs strongly emphasize body autonomy as well as the freedom to express your gender or sexuality as you see fit.
I struggle with discrimination based on my lifestyle daily. I’m told to “get over it” and admit I’m female. I was refused sterilization 12 times before I found a doctor who finally tied my tubes. I’m told I’m an attention seeker, a slut, and just about every damn word in the book. If I get sexually assaulted, I will most likely be blamed for it at least once.
I’m not going to lie. I don’t trust people to remain civil with me or treat me as an equal. That’s why I am so adamant about legal protections for body autonomy, why I care about gender discrimination, and why I believe everyone should have the right to have their sexuality and gender accepted.
Right now, a lot of people want to see people like me lose rights. The rights they want me to lose range from the right to my choice of birth control, the right to choose who I sleep with, the right to consent, and the right to be able to walk around without worry of being attacked for being queer.
If I see someone whose beliefs don’t fall in line with mine, I have every reason to get up and leave. That person, whether they realize it, is actively supporting causes that make people like me (as well as me personally) suffer.
Certain political beliefs are also indicators of an abuser.
I’ve noticed that people who vouch for cruel punishments, misogyny, and tyranny generally are not happy people. In fact, I’d go so far as to say they are consumed by rage and hate. They don’t even know why, but they need to get that anger out.
Guess what? Extreme beliefs and intolerance are linked to abusive behavior. My bailing is an act of self-defense. I don’t want to be abused. So, I make a point to cut ties with people who have red flags of abuse.
I don’t want to be embarrassed by their behavior.
We all know that one friend who says awful things to the wrong people. With people who don’t have similar beliefs, I’ve noticed that the chances of a social gaffe are sky high. People with differing political beliefs just don’t mesh well together when it comes to socializing in groups.
We all gravitate to people who think like us. If I am dealing with someone who is not of a similar political affiliation, then they may say stuff that offends my friends. If I’m the one who invited them, I end up looking bad. That’s not cool.
I feel I need to speak out somehow.
Evil succeeds when the good stay silent. I don’t want to be silent anymore. I don’t want to see people think it’s okay to actively vote against my rights as a human being while they remain in contact with me. It’s not okay.
From personal experience, arguing with others over politics doesn’t do a bit of good. I’m not going to win that battle. However, I can stop hanging around them and let them know why. Maybe, just maybe, they will realize they’re wrong. If they don’t, well, I don’t have to deal with them.
At the end of the day, it’s my way of choosing how I’m treated.
No one, regardless of who they are, is entitled to other peoples’ friendship, love, sex, or time. We choose who we hang out with. It’s okay to be choosy. In fact, it’s a really wise decision. No one owes me time, friendship, or love. I don’t owe them either, even if it’s for manners’ sake.
All in all, my decision to cut ties with people who carry different beliefs is one that is rooted in the fact that I don’t have time for that in my life. I don’t have interest in hanging out with people who believe I shouldn’t have rights, nor do I want to spend time being nice to people whose political beliefs actively attack me.
I’m not going to apologize for wanting people in my life who support queer rights. I’m not going to apologize for refusing to tolerate racists. I’m not going to apologize for refusing to speak to sexist people. If political factions don’t want people like me to exist, they can learn to deal with me not wanting them in my life.
Cover image via Eloquent Woman