Why is our identity so rooted in politics?
This is something I often ponder and often times it ends up leaving me feeling frustrated.
I grew up with a conservative background. I went to church occasionally. I was taught ‘right’ from ‘wrong’. When I entered high school my identity seemed to be rooted more firmly in politics as I made the decision to attend church religiously (pun intended) and thought I had everything figured out.
I thought immigrants were a plague on the U.S. I thought being gay was the worst sin you could commit and felt appalled by gay marriage. I thought men were unable to control their sexual impulses and therefore needed to be protected from risque images. I thought Obama was the anti-Christ. You get the idea…
Part of my beliefs were formed from my family. Part of my beliefs were formed from the church.
Fast forward some years later and with some maturity and life experience I realized all of these beliefs that I held onto…weren’t really my own. It took me time to accept that I did not have to believe everything my family did. It took me time to accept that immigrants are people just like you and I, not something to be feared. It took me time to accept that I have no issue with gay people or gay marriage.
So my husband would probably just call me a liberal at this point. Maybe I am? Does it matter? Does it change who I am ultimately? Does it change how much I love my family and children? Does it change how I treat people?
I think it shouldn’t matter whether you are a Republican or Democrat. I think we put WAY too much stock into politics and how it relates to our identity. I think the point (and Jesus would agree with me here too) is that we are to LOVE ONE ANOTHER.
We may not agree on everything. But if you are a Republican, Democrat, immigrant, whether you are gay or straight, whether you practice religion or not, I am open and willing to being friends and will treat you with as much respect as anyone else.
I wish it didn’t matter as much as it seems too. And I hope after reading this all my friends and family still love and accept me. But if they don’t – then they can go kick rocks.