It’s 11:45, and you’re trying to wind down a little before going to bed. As you scroll through your feed, you notice your increasingly racist, Republican aunt has posted something that “the liberal media refuses to show you.” As usual, her post is both deeply inaccurate and profoundly racist. Should you remind yourself that you will never change her mind and get a solid eight hours of sleep, or pick a fight with your aunt and her random friend Susan until 4am? Take this quiz to find out:
Do you want to be productive at work tomorrow?
- Yes! The effectiveness of social media communication has its limits and I will do my best to present facts and ask pointed questions the next time I see my aunt.
- Yes, but I plan to be fueled entirely by coffee and the blind rage caused by every comment where she inexplicably brings up Hillary even though her post is about immigrants.
Do you value a lasting relationship with your aunt?
- Yes, because I want her to trust me enough that I can still be an influential force in her life.
- I’m still weighing out the pros and cons of having to speak to her at the next 20-30 holiday dinners where she talks about her gun like it’s a loved one.
Can this wait until tomorrow?
- Of course it can – her opinions sure aren’t gonna change overnight!
- Absolutely not – in just a few hours, Susan and her 200 other friends are going to share this post and misinform thousands more people. Time is imminent. I can sleep when democracy is restored.
How bad is the post?
- It’s pretty bad, but pretty common Republican talking points.
- She thinks Trump “isn’t going far enough.” I think she might be joining a militia at the border any day now.
What do you expect to achieve from this exchange?
- I want to tap into her emotions with personal stories that will challenge her worldview, because I know that while she struggles with empathy, she has come around on issues before.
- I want her to know that she is wrong, over and over again, until I pass out with my laptop on my bed because it seems like I’m related to people who would have sympathized with the Nazis? What else can you do when you’re dealing with Nazis?
Mostly 1’s: It sounds like you’re gonna get a good night’s sleep tonight! You should go to bed and get some rest, and give her some links to read and a phone call tomorrow.
Mostly 2’s: It sounds like you’re related to a member of a far-right group that is likely dangerous. Staying up all night might not change any of that, but it’s all you have. How did we get to this place? How did it all come to this? Oh right, our country’s entirely racist, xenophobic history. Hmm.