"Don’t be a commie/Vote for Romney" read the bumper sticker a lane over from me on southbound Lake Shore Drive Monday morning.
"I’m going to hit this [expletive deleted]" immediately flashed through my mind, as I cut into he SUV’s lane of traffic.
The plan forming in my head was to hit the gold Lexus GX, hard. I have insurance. Isn’t the purpose of insurance is so I can hit morons like this?
Then, before the exchange of information– so the driver was my captive– I would start my lecture. First, define communism. Second, please explain how the Obama Administration is communist. Third, are we now a communist country since nearly 70 million people voted for Obama in 2008?
Then, when the driver spouted off that we are no longer free, which we are forced to hear a lot from these imbeciles, I would direct the driver to google "Pussy Riot" on his/her smart phone and discuss his/her freedoms relative to those of the members of the Russian punk band.
The Lexus was two cars ahead– I had to change lanes and ease behind the driver, then I was going to George Michael his ass: "WHAM!"
As my plan came together, I was distracted as I ticked off my lecture points in my head when traffic slowed down to a stop. I slammed on my brakes with about two inches to spare on the unsuspecting Commie Obama voter in front of me (it was a Toyota Prius).
Then I tried to relax. But the damned bumper sticker irritated me.
On Saturday night, I found myself in good ole Elmhurst, celebrating my friends’ 40th birthday. As I sat with friends from high school, the discussion turned to politics. Although Danielle and I were voting for different people for president, there was more than just mutual respect for our decisions, there was something else that people don’t seem to do anymore: we listened to each other.
So I left Elmhurst Saturday night hopeful. I was hopeful that whatever happens in next week’s election, there would be more discussion rather than blind argument. Our country has some huge issues that must be resolved. But to find resolution on Medicare, for example, we will need to discuss and evaluate the best ideas, regardless of party, rather than sitting on our hands and doing nothing because we want our team– red vs. blue– to win. Since when aren’t we all on the same team?
But we can’t have that discussion by demonizing the opponent. You can’t call the other side commies, socialists, Hitler or worse, and then sit down with them and try to bang out a compromise. You can’t sit down and compromise with Hitler– Hitler has to be defeated.
And the mentality that a vote for Obama is a vote for communism is an unproductive starting point where no compromise can ever be reached.
And it’s factually incorrect and it makes you look stupid.
And it’s juvenile. What is this second grade? We have some big problems that need to be solved– acting like an eight year old is probably not the best way to work toward resolution.
And that’s why I ultimately changed lanes and privately stewed about the bumper sticker. Acting like a second grader, to get back at some other juvenile idiot, certainly isn’t the answer.
Plus, I didn’t want my insurance rates to go up.