Talking Politics With Someone Who Has Different Views
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

5 Things I Learned Talking Politics With Someone Who Has Different Views

Before our politicians begin reaching across the aisle, we might need to reach across the dinner table.

5 Things I Learned Talking Politics With Someone Who Has Different Views

Election day, November 3, is just weeks away. That is the day you will vote for the future of this country. And if you are voting by mail, the date is even closer. Amid a pandemic, increasing awareness of systemic racism, and ravaging natural disasters, there is no doubt the 2020 election will be historic.

Politics is and has always been a dividing issue. And now, with a government where opposing political parties cannot find common ground, supporters on both sides are drawing lines in the sand. That has led to a prime example of an enduring societal belief — never talk politics.

To never talk politics with someone from a different political party has been ingrained in me. I don't know where that belief comes from other than it being constantly reinforced by society. When I was younger, I never understood how talking about something that impacts everyday life and the future is considered taboo. The belief continues with me to this day.

Granted, while that belief has stayed firm to this day, my political beliefs have changed. College and other life experiences have influenced me to look and act with a more extreme, polarizing view that others may not agree with or share. But the other day, I had an opportunity to talk to someone with different political beliefs than me. It was a moment that opened my eyes.

Our conversation, although brief in nature, brought up several profound thoughts regarding factors that increase the Political Divide and I would like to share them with you:

Don't be one-sided.

Understand the other person has their own perspective. Political beliefs form from complex socioeconomic and religious factors and life experiences. Often, you may not know the full story of why a person believes what they do. You DO NOT have to agree with them, but you should understand where they are coming from if you wish to engage in a civil and productive conversation.

Voting is about who you think will be best... Then again, it may not be.

Voting is the backbone of our democracy. It is a process by which a person expresses their opinion. The right to vote is to vote for who you think will be the best candidate. However, that is not to say, vote for an individual who only benefits you. It is essential when voting and speaking about Politics to consider others, especially minorities, who may be affected by policies that you might disregard.

Do your own research.

Political beliefs and opinions are usually formed from childhood. We often adopt the views of our family and friends. We also sometimes reject them. In truth, it does not matter which political party you align with. Still, it is essential to do your own research regarding the candidate's policies and the party you are endorsing. That way, you understand what you are saying, supporting, and discussing.

Remember the political division is nothing new.

The Partisan Divide between political parties is embedded in our American Culture. In his 1796 farewell address, George Washington warns the American people about the dangers of factions and the division they will cause. Understand that the division between political parties and beliefs has always been there and may still be there unless we make a change and reach across the aisle or even the dinner table and discuss.

Political conversations are never a place for aggression.

Although it may be tempting to aggressively assert your political beliefs and opinions onto someone with different political views, it should be avoided. I'm not saying do not talk about politics with them. I actually encourage you to discuss why you are voting for an individual or why you hold certain beliefs because it creates a conversation that wouldn't otherwise happen. When talking about politics and trying to influence others to change their thoughts, come from a place of sincerity, wanting to educate them on the importance of their vote and beliefs on other individuals' livelihoods. If you force your opinions onto someone else, it creates a further divide between the two sides. It even reinforces the individual's belief to not vote for the person you want because you do not consider what they believe.

* * *

With these few thoughts regarding the Political Divide and how to overcome it in conversation, it's now time, as Americans, to have that dialogue and start healing the divide within our nation.

Report this Content

Where To Find The Best Coffee Drinks In America, According To A Survey

Here's the coffee shop where you should get your morning brew.


Coffee, for billions of people, is one of the only things that can get us out of bed (after hitting snooze a time or two), especially in 2020. Because, if we're being honest, is there anything that beats a quality cup of coffee on those mornings when all we wanted to do is roll over and go back to sleep? The answer is no. And if you're headed to a coffee shop to pick up your caffeinated beverage, you don't want to sleep on the best coffee drinks in America.

According to LiveShopper Sassie's Coffee Project survey, when it comes to chain coffee shops, there are definitely preferred spots you'll want to hit up for your go-to order — whether you order the classic, frozen, or flavored coffee, an espresso, tea, or other. To figure out the hot spots, 1,000 coffee drinkers across the United States took to LiveShopper's mobile app, PrestoShopper, to answer various questions about their coffee drinking habits and preferences. In return, these survey respondents got money back for their coffee — something any user who downloads the app can do as well (yes, even you).

Keep Reading... Show less

For me, chai isn't just what I drink — it's a core part of who I am. Sure, I'll switch it up every now and then with a cup of English Breakfast, Earl Grey, rose, or Darjeeling, but I always come back to chai.

Nearly every tea lover has one tea they repeatedly drink and go back to, whether it's a daily morning ritual or an afternoon pick-me-up. One of my good friends has almost eight cups of jasmine tea every single day — she drinks more tea than water, actually.

Keep Reading... Show less
Content Inspiration

Survey: Which Issues Are The Most Important To You In The 2020 Election

If you're a first-time voter or voting by mail for the first time, we want to hear your story.


The general election on Tuesday, November 3, 2020, will decide not only the next president of the United States but also which political party controls the House of Representatives and the Senate. Young and first-time voters will play a crucial part in determining the result.

Keep Reading... Show less

If you were formerly an Odyssey creator, like Tatyannah King or Julia Waterbury, we want to hear from YOU about how your creator journey helped you get to where you are today.

Keep Reading... Show less

Articles To Write If You're All About Saving More Money, And Waking Up A Little Bit Earlier

Get your day started right — and keep that budget tight.


For all the young professionals, parents, and students out there who've been working, learning, or even teaching remote — 2020 has likely been the longest year of your life. If you didn't know (sorry), we've been locked down for over 200 days now, and chances are, you are ready for it to be OVER.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Going To College During COVID-19 Has Caused Some INTENSE Burnout, And It's Not Just Me

Graduation doesn't even feel like the light at the end of the tunnel anymore.


When my college announced that we would be having the fall 2020 semester on-campus, I was pretty excited. After six months of living at home with my parents with nothing to do, my study abroad trip in May canceled, and my 21st birthday plans down the drain, going back to campus meant that I would regain some of my individuality and see my friends again. But since we've returned, it has not been as fun as I had hoped my senior year of college would be.

Keep Reading... Show less

How Much Of A Coffee Snob You Are, Based On Where You Live

Your state may determine how picky you are about your coffee.


When it comes to coffee, everyone has different criteria for what goes into their "perfect cup." Some caffeine lovers, though, are extra particular when it comes to their beloved beverage. One survey found that the state you're from (or the one you live in now) may play a part in determining how much of a coffee snob you actually are.

LiveShopper Sassie, the company behind this Coffee Project survey, received input from 1,000 coffee drinkers via their mobile app, PrestoShopper, to ask various questions about their coffee drinking habits and preferences. In return, these survey respondents got money back for their coffee — something any user who downloads the app can do as well (yes, even you).

Keep Reading... Show less

I went through a breakup in the middle of November 2018 and decided I'd get on Tinder and see what happens. I honestly didn't know what I wanted from it and I never thought people could actually find their forever person on it until I did. I actually ended up marrying him a couple of months after we had matched, and now we are about to hit 2 years of marriage! Here are some tips on finding love on Tinder, if you're ready for commitment...

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

6 Simple Activities That May Actually Help You Sleep Better At Night

Because being well-rested is crucial to your overall health.


I often can't sleep at night due to a slurry of medical issues, both mental and physical. Often times I fall asleep between three and five in the morning. I know there are many others just like me, so I did some research to benefit us all. Here are 6 things to do when you can't sleep.

Keep Reading... Show less

No matter what job you wish to pursue or where you'll end up in your career, writing will always be an invaluable skill.

Just ask Julia Waterbury, a former Odyssey creator and college graduate with a business degree, for whom this couldn't be more true! Though she began by using Odyssey as a creative outlet, she quickly learned it was so much more and soon was able to include her articles and skills (from writing and editing to SEO and social media marketing) to up her resume game.

Keep Reading... Show less

I haven't had sex since I lost my virginity at the end of my sophomore year of high school and now I'm a freshman in college, so I'd like to say I know a thing or two about not having sex. Here are four lessons I've learned over the last two years of abstinence.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments