Beer and Politics

I saw a post yesterday encouraging liberals to drink bleach. It was, no doubt, a response to multiple other posts encouraging conservatives to inject themselves with Lysol. I understand the context and the events leading up to those specific posts. I understand satire and sarcasm. AND I think this behavior — whether it was creating memes like this, sharing them, or liking them — is 100% not useful and very harmful to We the People.

These days I find myself moderately left on the political spectrum. That does not mean I will defend any and all leftist views, no matter what. That does not mean that anyone to the right of me is my enemy. That means, based on my 35 years experience of life as a white female in the state of Wyoming with the parents, education, social networks, interests, money, and opportunities I have had, this is how I see the world. And that’s. it. I don’t get to tell anyone else how to see the world. I am an authority on my life and no one else’s. And that’s what we seem to have forgotten.

Those people on the other “side” of the spectrum from you (the ones you joke about injecting with Lysol)… Don’t you think they love their children and want the best for them? Don’t you think they, too, are struggling to find their sense of right and wrong? That they worry about the security of their job and where their next paycheck is coming from? That they hold their sweetheart at night and dare to dream about their future? That they love the outdoors and respect nature? That they have moments of major fear and doubt about the government and those “in charge” of us all? Remembering these things — the things we all share — is how we win.

I know people with completely opposite views than I who would give me the shirt off their back if I needed it. They are fun, funny, intelligent, good-hearted people who I am proud to know. I hope they would feel the same about me, our political views aside.

So what is the solution? Never talk politics? No. Talking politics is important. Finding consensus is necessary. It is how we will heal. BUT we need to change the way we talk politics, or we will be too guarded and defensive to ever find a consensus. We should still feel fired up about what’s meaningful to us. But there is a difference between heated and hateful. There is a difference between passionate and nasty.

We don’t need to agree on everything. In fact we shouldn’t. BUT, can we share our views without being rude? Can we listen to someone else’s views without assuming they’re ignorant? Can we, even for a moment, curiously entertain the thought that someone else may know better than us what could be a better agenda? Can we simply move on with our lives with no response when we see a meme/post/article designed to trigger us? (Yes, designed by companies who are paid to do just that. Can we recognize that as fire starting material and ignore it?) 

Those are big asks, I’m aware. I know what it feels like to be scrolling and see something so misinterpreted/misconstrued/or downright made up that it turns my face red and elevates my heart rate and gets me yelling and cussing at the ceiling. (I’m sure it’s entertaining for my boyfriend.)

I would love for us to recognize that Americans are stuck in a vicious cycle right now:

Get mad >> Find “evidence” to back up our opinion >> Rant and rave >> Get triggered by responses >> Get more mad and more evidence to make ourselves right >>>>>>>>>

This happens on both sides, to all parties, no matter who you are. We’re forgetting that while we’re all busy arguing and fighting, the actual decision-makers sit on their hill doing what they please. As it is right now, we’ve been successfully divided and conquered, our voice diminished. And we feel it. No wonder all this frustration is bubbling out of us constantly. My belief is it’s misguided. Let’s be frustrated with a system that is not working. Let’s be frustrated with how hard it is to be heard. Let’s be frustrated with how badly we have been sucking at loving our multi-opinionated neighbors. THAT frustration could be useful.

I want to believe that we are capable of rising above and having mature, empathetic conversations that will actually move us forward. But it starts with quitting the addiction to bickering and quitting the addiction to being right. (I’m saying this to myself as much as to anyone else out there.)

I hope we can do it friends. We all have to share this big planet, so I think it would behoove us to find a better way to resolve our differences. Let’s discuss. 💜

P.S. This may or may not be relevant information, but I was half a beer in when I started writing this post and just completed both. Cheers.

How is Unconditional Love A Thing? (And How to Find It When You’ve Been Injusticed)

I used to think Unconditional Love was unreachable. Like, sure — that worked for Jesus and Gandhi but not for me.

Then, after a few self-help books and really trying to be a “nice” person, *cough cough* I shifted into thinking Unconditional Love was “Unconditional Acceptance of Inappropriate and Abusive Behavior.” 

Yeah, that wasn’t right either.

I’ve finally landed on a definition I can live with. To me, Unconditional Love says,

“You deserve to be happy. I hope you receive all that you desire and that you are able to live in your truth.” 

(This could work from any distance. I could wish that for you whether you are close enough to make out with or waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay the fuck over there.)

Ok, so why? Why try and love everybody?

When I can figure out and implement Love of the Unconditional variety, I am relieved of the heavy, ugly, cumbersome, cancerous weight of resentment. It exhausts us, depletes us, and turns into horrific things like hatred and cruelty. I mean, seriously, what could you be doing with all your energy if it wasn’t going towards trying to get revenge, or proving someone wrong, or making people feel sorry for you? That’s pouty, petty drama and it will not change the world for the better. 

To put it simply, loving everybody (from near or far) is the antidote to what ails all of us.

How to get there? I’ve come up with a list of things to remind myself when I get sucked into the rabbit hole of feeling injusticed. I’ll leave it right here for you:


  1. We’ve all done dumb, cruel, or dishonest things. When I remember that the very thing I’m pissed at someone else for doing is likely a variation of something I’ve done, am doing, or will do, the whole “we’re all the same” sentiment starts ringing truer than I’d like. And if I can look inside and discover how I happened to do those dumb, cruel, or dishonest things, I’m able to find grace for others and the bone-headed choices they (we) make.
  2. No one else is responsible for my well-being. It is not your job to make me happy. Or be my customer. Or read my blog. Or invite me to things. Or tell me I’m pretty. I put myself out into the world; some of you will connect with what I have to offer and some of you won’t. I don’t need to be liked by everyone.
  3. Those that hurt me worst have woken me up the most. They were my greatest teachers. I wouldn’t have broken open and started to find myself if it weren’t for all the pain. Dawn follows the darkness and ecstasy follows agony. I can find gratitude for everyone who has played a role in my life, whether they were antagonist or protagonist.
  4. We are all children. When I look behind arrogance, avoidance, disconnection, and dishonesty, I can see lost little boys and girls who were bullied, shamed, abused, and misunderstood. That doesn’t mean I need to accept their behavior and be their doormat; it means I don’t need to take them personally.
  5. My perspective is mine and mine alone. I don’t need you to agree with me to feel justified. I don’t need you to take my side in an argument. I don’t need you to have beef with someone just because I do. You have a right to your perspective and we can still get along even if it doesn’t look like mine.
  6. I can’t fix anyone. I can guide and support if they want it and I’m willing. But I need to drop the weight of feeling responsible for making others change their behavior.

If I had to sum up this list, I would say:

Own what’s yours. And that’s all. 

Would be nice if I could tell you I only needed this reminder once, but that would be a lie. I have to come back to these time and time again. (I feel injusticed easily. 🙄) This isn’t a one-time thing. It will probably be a life-long practice. But, IMO, a practice that is totally worth the effort.

Related Posts:

Love You. Goodbye.

If You’ve Ever Said, “I Just Don’t Understand Some People…”

When We Hurt



Love You. Goodbye. (Boundaries and Unconditional Love)


“Well I just don’t want to give up on him.”

“I’ve already invested so much into this relationship.”

“She has a good heart under all that. She just needs understanding.”

“He’s never really been loved. I’ll be the one to show him what it feels like.”

“I just want to love everybody where they’re at on their own journeys.”

“He’s not perfect, but none of us are.”

Unconditional love. It’s a weird thing – loving someone wholly, the good, bad, and ugly. It sounds admirable doesn’t it? And it is. I mean, if you can really love everybody exactly as they are showing up, then you have come a long way on the personal development train.

However, this gets dangerous. Because sometimes we throw out the term “unconditional love” as an excuse to remain in an abusive relationship (with a lover, friend, or family member). But if one party is constantly getting hurt and disrespected, that is not actually love. That is accepting the unacceptable. And that is not loving YOU, dear one.

Why do we do this? Why do we allow ourselves to be run over in the name of love? People continue to allow parents, spouses, friends, and even jobs to berate, neglect, or flat-out abuse them for years. Societal opinion doesn’t help us out too much with this one. As a culture, we’ve mistaken self-sacrifice for heroism.

We celebrate people who stay married and pity people who get divorced.

We praise martyr-ish behavior rather than supporting those who say “no.”

We commend those who are “selfless” and condemn those who are “selfish.”

But in many cases, that attitude is wrong. Sticking by someone who disrespects or mistreats you is quite detrimental. Hanging in there, gritting your teeth, grinning and bearing, digging your claws in, swallowing your words… that’s not love. Love should feel like freedom. And those things don’t.

So where does the “unconditional” piece come in? Can you tell someone to piss off leave a relationship and still continue loving the other person? Of course. Try these on for size:

“I love you. From over here.”

“I love you. And I do not accept your behavior.”

“I love you. And I love myself enough to not let you hurt me anymore.”

“I love you. Goodbye.”

See? They work, don’t they?

Love yourself first. Then others will see how to love you too.



Related Posts:

The Most Awkward Hug Ever and Why I Was Pissed About It

When We Hurt

But I Don’t Want to Be Fake