We all have those family members. Ones that, while we don’t actively wish them harm or ill will, we do wish they’d stop voting. Or talking. Or, at the very least, sign off of Facebook every once in a while.
Racism, sexism, and bigotry in all their forms should usually be challenged, especially right now. But sometimes, you look across the holiday table to see your mom’s eyes silently screaming at you to just Get Through This One Goddamn Meal without telling your 85-year-old great aunt that she isn’t woke. Of course she’s not. She’s barely awake and it’s only 4:30 in the afternoon.
The good news is, you don’t have to talk to these people often if you don’t want to (a tactic that is a favorite of mine) and you don’t need to engage them too much while you’re there. If it comes down to talking to them without getting into a screaming match over net neutrality, shift gears—pun very much intended. Talk about the cars.
So, here are a few talking points to get the conversation off of the latest demoralizing news cycle and on to more cheerful things. Things you can be thankful for.
Relative: What’s wrong with people today is...
Response: Not enough people drive manuals! We’re losing our connection with the great era of motoring and I agree, it’s a damn shame.
Relative: If all of these foreigners would just...
Response: You mean imports? I think the 25-year ban is bullshit too. I thought this was AMERICA and we had FREEDOM here.
Relative: If the media would only stop trying to rile people up with their lies and spark...
Response: You know I heard you can cheap out on spark plugs, what do you think?
Relative: Roy Moore...
Response: The only Moore I care about is Roger Moore. Which film had the better car chase, The Spy Who Loved Me or For Your Eyes Only? I’m a Lotus fan, so you know I’m going with The Spy Who Loved Me!
Relative: Russia didn’t help anyone...
Response: When they built the Lada? I disagree. But hey, we can differ on opinion and still respect each other. Right?
Response: ...chi? Trumpchi. Can’t say I’d buy one, but hey, choices are good.
You may not like yourself after these interactions, but at least you don’t dislike your relatives even more. Remember; save it for Facebook, where this kind of things belong.