"The humanity has been reduced to nothingness and all that’s left in its place is an argument that can never really be won."
Musician, brony advocate and Village Voice advice columnist Andrew W.K. sent a powerful message to a self-proclaimed “liberal democrat with very progressive values” bashing his right-wing father that has been resonating throughout the Twitterverse.
“Son of a right-wing Republican” wrote:
I just can’t deal with my father anymore. He’s a 65-year-old super right-wing conservative who has basically turned into a total asshole intent on ruining our relationship and our planet with his politics … Don’t get me wrong, I love him no matter what, but how do I explain to him that his politics are turning him into a monster, destroying the environment, and pushing away the people who care about him?
Andrew W.K’s response was one that begged for compassion and understanding, in spite of ideological differences.
Go back and read the opening sentences of your letter. Read them again. Then read the rest of your letter. Then read it again. Try to find a single instance where you referred to your dad as a human being, a person, or a man. There isn’t one. You’ve reduced your father — the person who created you — to a set of beliefs and political views and how it relates to you.
According to Pew, Republicans and Democrats are more divided by political and ideological lines in 2014 than they have been in the last two decades. There’s been an increase in antipathy as well — polling found that 27% of Democrats see the Republican Party as a threat to the nation’s well-being, while 36% of Republicans saw the Democratic Party as a threat to national well-being.
Andrew W.K. continued:
The world isn’t being destroyed by democrats or republicans, red or blue, liberal or conservative, religious or atheist – the world is being destroyed by one side believing the other side is destroying the world. The world is being hurt and damaged by one group of people believing they’re truly better people than the others who think differently. The world officially ends when we let our beliefs conquer love. We must not let this happen.
In the end, the columnist’s advice was as follows:
Love your dad because he’s your father, because he made you, because he thinks for himself, and most of all because he is a person. Have the strength to doubt and question what you believe as easily as you’re so quick to doubt his beliefs. Live with a truly open mind – the kind of open mind that even questions the idea of an open mind. Don’t feel the need to always pick a side. And if you do pick a side, pick the side of love. It remains our only real hope for survival and has more power to save us than any other belief we could ever cling to.