I will try to not get political. But in the context of this lesson, I have to go there a little bit. Please understand that I’m not trying to propagate anything. Just showing you what happened and the lesson we learned.
A few weeks ago, I gave my dad a call. Of course, I caught him watching his nightly news and he filled me in on Thailand’s current political climate. strategies to gain control of the country by their influence on PAD.
My dad is among those who speculated that the rich, old elites are funneling money into PAD so they could be in power again after all these years of the “self made millionaire” threatening to take over.
“The PAD seems to want the Democrats to be government and Abhisit as PM,” dad suggested.
“But *I* want Khun Mark [Abhisit] to be the PM…” I whined. I’m biased on the subject of Khun Mark. I had been cheering for his youth, new attitude, and, of course, his charisma (come on, the man’s hot!) since he came onto the scene years ago. Very objective. Yep. That’s me.
“I know, honey. It would be nice. Jus not like this,” dad replied. And I agreed with him.
That was a part of my post where the rest of it was just my droning on about my day. However, it seemed to hit the nerves of one particular PAD supporter, a real life friend of mine.
We got into a virtual row over this.
Angry. Frustrated. Confused. Fed up. Overwhelmed. Despaired. Saddened.
Thai people have become any and all of those these days. Even the littlest thing could send passionate folks into a rampage. One comment could cause a mayhem.
My motherland is thoroughly divided that friends are made enemies and family members stop talking to each other over politics.
My friend the Commenter and I had our heated moment of exchange off the blog over our stances. Since we know each other, the first few exchanges were emotional. It was firmly requested that politics should not be discussed on my personal blog. I felt personally attacked. The friend felt idealogically offended.
The easy way out is for me to shut the hell up…which I didn’t quite do. How could you ignore this giant elephant in the room, threaten to rampage over our friendship?
And so the exchange continued and, amazingly, we found out that we were not standing on the polar opposite after all. The more we unknot each of our ideas, We found that we agreed on every fundamental thing, up to this one fine point. Our intentions are the same. Our ideals are the same. What we want for our country is the same. But we diverge on the HOW part. And it’s not all that difference on how our country could get where we would want it to either.
A very fine line of how our views differ, but enough to let us stand with one tippy toe on the opposite side.
Out of this dialogue, I realized a few things.
First, a civil discussion REALLY can bring parties to a solution. Gosh knows that between two U.S. educated Thais, one a business owner and a parent in Thailand and the other a non-profit employee and childless by choice in California, we might just come up with a solution to solve our country’s problem!
I mean, both of us started off almost at each other’s throat, and now we might just have an answer.
How cool is that?!
And secondly, it hit me.
We were talking politics. We were discussing the state of our nation. We were taking our stands for each of our beliefs. Quite passionately so too.
For the first time since I’ve known the Commenter/Friend, a SERIOUS political discussion slowly grew out of what started out almost like an adolescent spat.
We have become adults.