I believe that you all know that I go to great lengths to stay out of political and religious discussions. Especially at work. I work with a lot of VERY conservative people. And there is nothing wrong with being conservative. I’m pretty conservative myself, although a little more left leaning than most conservatives.
I have listened to tirades about the things those damned democrats are doing to ruin our country, the way that same sex gender marriage is going to ruin the institution of marriage, not to mention that being gay is of the devil and immoral and sinful and unnatural. You’ve heard it all before.
So I stay out of those conversations. They can rant and rave all they want and I just peck away at my computer and ignore the conversations.
The other day we were talking about how this generation is so entitled. This is a topic that I’m all too ready to jump into because I see it with some of my children. The idea that they are owed something. We were pretty deep into the conversation and one person was really on a roll about the newest generation. I reminded him (he’s a huge history buff) that Socrates had the same idea about the youth of his generation:
“Our youth now love luxury. They have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for their elders and love chatter in place of exercise; they no longer rise when elders enter the room; they contradict their parents, chatter before company; gobble up their food and tyrannize their teachers.”
Then he asked if I wanted to know what he really thought the problem was. Mistakingly, I said that I did. Well, I was not prepared for what came next. I can’t quote him, and I’m not even going to try, but the premise of his statement was that it was all these people who believed in evolution. They didn’t believe in God, therefore they didn’t feel the need to be accountable to anyone but themselves, therefore they were selfish and entitled.
I’ll give you a moment to process that.
Maybe another minute? I’ve got all day.
OK, I’m joking. I don’t have all day. It’s almost my bedtime so I need to get this written.
There were about a thousand thoughts going through my mind. This was doomed to go directly into a religious discussion that I work very hard to stay out of.
This would normally be the point where I turned tail and hid in my computer. But over the past few years I have met some of “those people.” People who don’t believe there is a God. People who believe in evolution. People that I admire and respect because they are caring, loving people. People who are in no way, shape or form “entitled” to anything that they don’t work for. People who feel a great responsibility to the earth. Our environment. Those who are less fortunate than themselves. These are not people who do not feel go through life feeling like they have no accountability. How could I not stand up for these wonderful women? These women who have become my friends, even though I have a different belief system than they do? People that I admire for their intelligence, their warmth? I had to say something.
I looked him dead in the eye and very calmly said, “I disagree.” I may as well have slapped him on the face. He seemed stunned. I’m not sure whether it was because I disagreed with something that so clearly to him was the truth, or if it was because I was entering into a religious discussion. Hell, I don’t even know if he realizes that I steer clear of religious discussions. We had a few words. I said my peace. He said his peace. We agreed to disagree. And it was done.