Politics at the Dinner Table

Discussion in 'Masonic Blogs' started by My Freemasonry, Dec 14, 2016.


    – Do we use this as an opportunity to reason and discuss?

    During this past Thanksgiving holiday, we were admonished by several talking heads on television not to discuss politics at the dinner table in order to maintain peace and harmony. I vehemently disagree as I see this as more political correctness running amok.​

    As we all know, our young people are no longer learning the important lessons of civics and history at the high school level, and college professors are twisting American history in order to make us feel guilty about our past. Concepts such as “American exceptionalism” and “Manifest Destiny” are very much frowned upon by liberal professors who are busily rewriting history and reshaping the perspective of our past.

    So, if youth is truly not learning the lessons of government, what better place to do so than at the dinner table? For starters we should use this opportunity to determine what our youth are learning in school, how it affects their perception of our country, and clear up any misconceptions. For example, ask about their patriotism. Do they stand for the flag and recite the pledge of allegiance? Do they regularly vote? Do they understand their responsibilities for serving on a jury? What is their understanding of current events?

    Discussion should allow for the open exchange of ideas, not unilateral. I don’t mind an opposing view, but I want to know why they have it, and certainly do not want to ostracize the person. In my day, everything was on the table for review, including drugs, religion, politics, war, law and order, sex, etc. The discussion should be more in the form of a debate as opposed to hotheaded slander or sarcasm. Interestingly, I find this is more easily done with conservatives as opposed to liberals who are trained to passionately attack rather than reason.

    As to history, discuss the necessity of the Declaration of Independence, the US Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. What were the events leading up to the Civil War, World Wars I & II, as well as Korea and Viet Nam? Do they understand the “Domino Theory” of communism? What are the differences between capitalism and socialism, or Democrats vs. Republicans, liberals vs. conservatives? What is gerrymandering and the electoral college?

    There is a lot to discuss at the dinner table. Failing to discuss such subjects does nothing but promote ignorance and encourages misunderstandings that may lead to emotional meltdowns as we saw recently following the 2016 elections, but even worse, withdrawals from our obligations as citizens.

    Christmas is rapidly approaching, and we’ll once again gather around the dinner table. If you want to stick your head in the sand as the pundits suggest, be my guest. As for me, I’ll have an extra helping of discussion with that turkey and dressing.

    Keep the Faith!

    Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.​

    Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

    For Tim’s columns, see: timbryce.com

    Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

    Copyright © 2016 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

    Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

    Listen to Tim on News Talk Florida (WWBA 820 AM), WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube.​

    Original article: Politics at the Dinner Table.

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Continue reading...
    Bloke and Bill Lins like this.
  2. Brother JC

    Brother JC Vigilant Staff Member

    It has been a rule in my family for at least a century not to discuss religion or politics at Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.
    tldubb and CLewey44 like this.
  3. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

    We have diverse politics and views of religion in my family which do get talked about. I think that's important because it shows the kids that people with different views can respectfully discuss them - that's what is becoming a lost art in our social discourse.
  4. Ripcord22A

    Ripcord22A Site Benefactor

    So after lodge tonight we went to a local pub for a drink. The IPM of the other lodge here joined us. Something got said about Americas enemys nuclear abilities and i made an off cuff remark that everyone is our enemy. Then I made a commemt about "bad guys." he commented about how easily that rollled off my tounge. This divulged in to his crazy 9/11 truther theories. And how he has proof that Mohammad Atta was in Switzerland weeks before 9/11 amd he stayed in the same room that Atta did and that he took this proof to the US consulate General and was told to.leave and never come back. We went back and forth he kept saying that the only reason they "bad guys" is because we are there but had no answer when i said that the majority of the people we were fighting werent Iraqis or Afghans they were legit insurgants from other countries. It became clear that this Brother has some extreme distaste for the US GOVT and our military. I finally shook hands and went home. Even though i whole heartedly disagree with everything he stands for socially and politically i hold no ill will and will gladly sit and talk with him again.

    Sent from my LG-H811 using My Freemasonry mobile app
    CLewey44, JMartinez and Bloke like this.
  5. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

    As I say, we can disagree without being disagreeable.
    I also like getting different points of view. It even causes me to change my mind ocassionally, lol.
    Bloke likes this.
  6. CLewey44

    CLewey44 Registered User

    Rip, I admire your patience haha. I will talk politics but I do it in a way that has always worked for me. I'll either avoid the conversation all together or I'll figure out things we can agree on. I don't think life is a big debate tournament personally. I think apart of it is I tend to get quite angry at what I think is stupidity so I just avoid as a general rule but if someone keeps on, I think ok, this person is XYZ political belief, I can agree with this so I'll try to keep the conversation somewhere in the middle or even I'll sway off in there direction if need be. It keeps the peace, it's not awkward later and I still have a colleague that I have no ill-will towards and vice-versa. Plus, I'm pretty moderate so it's easier I guess to find things on both sides. I use to get into those conversations all the time back in my AD days with some of the guys and it never failed, it'd turn into a two hour arguing, even shouting at each other lol.

    I have an uncle(by marriage and conservative) that got into it with his parents(liberal) and didn't talk to them for years. In my line of work, I hear nearly every day during the holidays how they got into it with their brother or cousin and the police were called out and this and that. Sometimes, however, you can find that person that has total opposite views of yours and you can have that conversation all day and never get irritated with each other, don't talk over each other, make good civil points. It's rare, but it happens.
  7. MWilliams

    MWilliams Registered User

    The family dinner table is fine, but NO politics or religion in the lodge. That drives a wedge between brothers that doesn't need to be there.
    Bill Lins, CLewey44 and Warrior1256 like this.
  8. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

    So Right! I rarely see a political discussion that doesn't get heated after just a few minutes.
    MWilliams likes this.
  9. CLewey44

    CLewey44 Registered User

    I don't recall what, if any, of the verbiage is in regards to talking about religion and politics in lodge. That may just be an unwritten rule. I would take it a step forward and avoid it at all especially among brethren. Not only does it potentially put a wedge between Masons, it can certainly cause upheaval at the family dinner table. I remember my grandfather, who was a MM in Alabama, would not let us talk politics at his house. He felt it tore people apart. We now have the opposite of that and everyone is a political 'expert' and are so polarized they can't come to a conclusion on anything.
    Bill Lins and Warrior1256 like this.
  10. CLewey44

    CLewey44 Registered User


    Just fyi, this article is pretty much garbage. Why is it even on this site?
    Zack likes this.
  11. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

    Smart man.
    Very true. I am guilty of this myself.
    CLewey44 likes this.
  12. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

    Last edited: May 6, 2018
  13. okielabrat

    okielabrat Registered User

    during the 2016 election campaigns, and ever since, political discussion has trampled whatever little shards of civility remains, anead scraped the carcass off its shoes like stepped in dog doo. Naturally, I leave my political leanings at home before I go to the Masonic Temple for Lodge meeting. DItto for religion and college football, even though most of my brothers are in the same church as me and are split between the two big universities in my home state. Matter of fact, we hardly discuss politics among ourselves outside of lodge.
  14. Rifleman1776

    Rifleman1776 Registered User

    No politics or religion has become the Thanksgiving and Christmas rule with our family also. Subjects are just too subjective and passionate. Avoid completely.
    Keith C, jermy Bell and Warrior1256 like this.
  15. Thomas Stright

    Thomas Stright Premium Member

    We have that rule at every meal....
    jermy Bell likes this.
  16. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

    In my experience a group discussion on either subject ALWAYS leads to heated words.
    jermy Bell and CLewey44 like this.
  17. jermy Bell

    jermy Bell Registered User

    Anytime, anywhere else but the dinner table is free game. I've seen people come across the dinner table over a disagreement.
    Warrior1256 likes this.

Share My Freemasonry