What if We Talked Politics The Way We Talk Sports?
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Politics and Activism

What if We Talked Politics The Way We Talk Sports?

Does anyone lose friends over sports the way they do over politics?

What if We Talked Politics The Way We Talk Sports?

What if we talked about politics the way we talk about sports? Would we be happier? Could we go back to having civil discourse? Would we enjoy social media more?

I’m from San Antonio and I’m a loyal Spurs fan. The vast majority of my friends from the same region are Spurs fans. When it comes to the Spurs, we don’t play around. It’s serious business. I’ve had friends who are Laker’s fans. When they rave about how extraordinary Kobe is, my eyes roll. We can criticize each other’s favorite teams without taking it personal. We are still friends.

Then there’s football. Many members of our family are die hard Broncos fans. My husband and I? Indifferent. We are bigger Tebow fans. The Broncos traded Tebow. We traded the Broncos. Do we all still get along? Yes. I made my nephew Broncos booties because I love my family.

Then there is politics.

Compliment Obama in front of conservative and see what happens. Say “Illegal Immigration” to a liberal and see what happens. If you start talking smack about your friend’s side of the political spectrum, you might be in for a long argument, raised blood pressure, tears, and possibly being “unfriended”. Or there might not be a discussion at all. Someone you were friends with will mysteriously disappear from your newsfeed without notice and you’ll be wondering if they don’t like the articles you share, your personal views, or what on earth you said or did to offend them.

Everyday people are taking vacations from Facebook. They are tired of the drama. Some people live for it, others can’t take it anymore.

Why can’t we just treat it like a sporting event?

Picture an Election Night Party:

“Oh, Hilary just won California! She’s got this thing in the bag!”

“Yeah right, you wait and see! Wait, what is that? Trump takes Texas, Florida and Pennsylvania! Oh game changer! Boo ya! Better luck next time libs!”

“He cheated!”

“Says the loser, ha! You owe me money foo!!!!”

Then we all shake hands and move on with our lives.

“But this isn’t a game” you say? It’s serious, right? Of course the decisions they make affect us and it is serious. This is also a game being played by the media and politicians. The democrats and republicans are competing against one another to win over your opinion. The media is playing their headlines and hooks to grab your attention. When a journalist is unsuccessful at grabbing reader interest, the job goes to someone who can. They are all competing for their stories to be the ones that are shared. One of the easiest ways to do that is by stirring intense emotion. Are you more likely to click on a link with a neutral headline or one that “pisses you off?” I thought so.

It may help keep the real issues in perspective when you’re aware of how their game works. Chuck Schumer gave a compelling speech the other day about how mean spirited President Trump’s immigration executive order was. He gave a similarly compelling speech in support of President Obama’s strikingly similar and longer order over the same countries a couple years ago. What was the difference? It was the team he was speaking of.

Mark Levin asked the other day, “Whatever happened to civil discourse?” Maybe we are caught up in an “every kid gets a trophy” trend. Maybe we can’t handle losing. Perhaps it’s getting harder to handle conflicts and disappointments. We take different perspectives way too personally and can’t keep the discourse civil. A little sportsmanship might go a long way. Having good sportsmanship means you are true to the side of the issue you are playing, you are competitive, you try to win, but if you lose you can still respect the other player.

Good game, y’all.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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