After spending Thanksgiving with my family in the great red state of Ohio, I wonder at those who define our great land as a nation divided. My Kerry-supporting sisters and mother don't love me (or my brothers and sisters-in-law) any less for supporting a president they all worked so hard to defeat.
Outside of New York, Washington, Los Angeles, Seattle, college towns and other very "blue islands" (as Dirty Harry would put it) in our increasingly red country, most Americans don't feel themselves alienated from their fellow citizens just because they voted for different candidates for president -- even in an election as divisive as the one just passed.
A story my sister-in-law (who like a majority of married women voted to reelect our man W) related confirms this. A friend of hers called her inviting her to a fundraiser for Senator Kerry. My sister-in-law declined politely saying that they while she disagreed with the president on some issues, she planned on voting for him. Their conversation was cordial. They exchanged pleasantries and politely ended the conversation.
As my sister-in-law reports when next she met this woman, nothing had changed. Their friendship continues despite the political difference.
Now, we all have stories of how our political adversaries have insulted us or cast us aside when they learn that we are conservatives or that **GASP** we voted for George W. Bush. And the rudeness of their response makes these stories stand out. They make more interesting anecdotes than the one my sister-in-law shared. Yet, more often than not, our relationships with our political adversaries resemble her story more than they do those of the name-calling left.
This is not to suggest that this blog will (from now on) ignore stories of liberal intolerance of conservatives, particularly conservative gays. Quite to the contrary. We will continue to report them and wonder at their hatred. But, the evidence continues to mount that while this mean-spirited voices of intolerance often drown out other more sensible sounds in our universities and our cultural centers, they remain a minority in our society.
My sister-in-law told a tale of the real America -- and told of a woman who, unlike many of Senator Kerry's staunchest advocates, resembles most closely the overwhelming majority of those who cast their votes for him last November 2.
Or so I hope.