Influencing Trump: American Politics Off the Rails
President Donald J. Trump
Flies and Honey
President Trump and I do not share the same sentiments on a great many issues; I believe this may be the case for a many people in the world, but I also believe there are many people out there who do share his opinions on certain issues. Differing opinions do not matter because no two human beings will agree on ever possible topic. What matters is being able to work in the grey areas where two differing sides can agree.
One of the big problems that democrats and republicans have dealing with each other is that both sides do not listen. It is hard to have a conversation with someone who is too busy waiting for the next moment to argue their talking points than hearing what is being said. When both sides are screaming and covering their ears to the other perspectives the result is discord and chaos. You can see this modeled in the current political climate.
The question for people operating in political climate is: how do we actually get someone to want to listen to us? Perhaps respect for the other person is the place to start. You do not have to like someone to work with them to accomplish a goal. This can be a difficult thing to do when you are faced with someone who makes your blood boil, but giving into the seething anger or hatred you may feel will only beget more negative feelings. To get what you want - someone to really hear you - you need to start with respect or at least a place of neutrality.
Getting to a place of neutrality will be impossible if you continue to name call or criticize your political opposition. Calling the people who vote for your opponents "deplorable" or "crazy" will lead to people being unwilling to listen to you. The writer Dale Carnegie states "criticism is dangerous, because it wounds a person's precious pride, and rouses resentment."
Living with Lack of Communication
Do you want to listen to someone who demeans you or your opinions?
Words of Wisdom
Those in glass houses should not throw stones!
- European Proverb
Capable Democrats Can Work with a Republican White House
It has been "reported" that President Trump is highly affected by what is being said about him in the press. Democrats can use what they know about the President and what he wants to get their agenda heard. Criticizing his interests and comparing him to former presidents will do nothing but alienate the President and help create a wider gap between the parties (if that is even possible). The President wants to be loved and respected like any person on the earth. Give him what he wants (a way that he looks good). Provide him with opportunities to take a bipartisan approach and get him to hear your agenda rather than dismissing you for being the enemy.
Republicans Can See More than Black and White
The current political climate traps Republicans. The brunt of republican/democrat us/them dynamics takes the rainbow out of politics. Republican politicians that may disagree with certain beliefs or opinions that come from the White House or other republican friends have trouble expressing these difference of opinions for fear their loyalty maybe questioned; however, republican like everyone else on earth are different and complex. What they believe differs.
When you label yourself and others you block the truth of a person's complexities. They are reduced to caricature making it hard to operate politically in a distorted reality.
Paintings of Political Colors
Do you paint all democrats or all republicans with the same brush.
Important Life Lesson
When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen, you may learn something new.
- Dalai Lama
All-Or-None in American Politics
People who thinks in extremes are engaging in distorted thinking because they deny the existence of anyone who exists outside of these extreme ideals. In terms of politics, republicans and democrats, can come to believe ridiculous statements about each other. Have you ever found yourself thinking that all republicans are racists or all democrats want to get rid of the second amendment? If you have you may be caught in a pattern of distorted thinking. You are not alone. Many people seem to be caught up in this political reality. Sitting back and just listening and digesting what other people who think differently than you can help you move out of this binary way of thinking.
Listening to your political friends from the other side of the aisle will make way for a more healthy environment. I think as a nation America has been experiencing a collective mental illness as all-or-none thinking is commonly seen in people with depression and anxiety. This is a huge weight for the American people to bare Hopefully, they will not need to bare this illness much longer. After all, the United States of America is strong passionate country and as a collective capable of understanding.
Before you fume at the next person you disagree with take a moment to hear what is actually being said, not what you believe is being said. Listen.
© 2019 Jen