As I watched the election unfold, and the reaction (mine and others) since then, I realize that compared to many, I’m very lucky. As I look at the friends and acquaintances I have through the variety of my connections, they run an interesting spectrum of colors from far right to far left.
I have friends to the right of me. Far, far more to the right than I, both politically and religiously. I know folks who believe the Bible literally in every aspect, others who are strong believers in the Doctrine of Ultimate Depravity (which is almost as scary as it sounds). A couple are fervent advocates of the 2nd Amendment above almost all other rights. And there are others who are just biased (pick a category, every category) and focused only on themselves.
I have friends to the left of me, some to the far left of me. I’ve known some who are gay or bisexual, while others are ethically polyamorous. Some are agnostics, some atheists, some just seeking or defining their own higher power. And there are those who are gamers, cosplayers, and even a couple of friends who are furries (look that one up if you don’t know it 🙂 )
Each one gives me aspects of their lives to think about. Each adds a shade, a color, a nuance, a perspective to my own view or positions. My views on abortion, gay/LGBTQ+ rights, alternative lifestyles, have all changed by knowing people in those communities. There has been at least one case where a columnist has helped me to understand the view of the world from the life of someone of a different color. In the end, what I had been harboring as a white,male, hardcore fundamentalist view has broadened to include, and care about, a variety of others that I didn’t know before. It seems difficult, if you don’t know anyone outside of your pale, your tribe, your mindset, to appreciate the diversity as much as you can with broader contacts.
I’m glad for shades of color that help broaden and enliven my world.