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Saturday, March 22, 2003



Differences of opinion

Rod Dreher has a fascinating article at National Review Online about friends and families splitting up because of opposite opinions about the war.

“I have lost, probably forever, at least four, and maybe more friends, including my college roommate from almost 45 years ago,” one wrote. Another reported: “I have lost a friend I have had for 30 years over the war argument. I can’t believe she can say the things she does — ‘no war for oil,’ etc. — without even thinking about making a logical argument for or against.”

Friends for over four decades. Friends for three decades. Gone, just like that. Many marriages don’t last that long.

It’s ripping up families too. “I actually hung up on my own mother yesterday after getting into a discussion about the war,” a young woman wrote. “I got angry after she asserted that our government was just as bad as Saddam’s. What do you say to a statement like that?” The woman said she and her mother agreed not to discuss the war again, for the sake of their relationship, but she fears that things may rupture between them if they’re not careful."

Dreher quotes pollster Frank Luntz saying that 1 out of 4 Americans are not just anti-war, but are "incandescently angry". My father falls into that group. He is full not just of rage but also of contempt. He doesn't think that Saddam's regime should be toppled through military means but more than that, he cannot countenance the possibility that anyone who is sane, decent, normal could come to an opinion about that that is different than his.

It's a strange feeling to be in a family and more broadly in a country where this is happening, especially since this is a country that deliberates about and enacts what it considers to be justifiable killings every day of the year.









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