Wednesday, August 16, 2023


I have a friend that I meet at Applebee’s every Friday (yes, I am one of those guys, I’ve heard the jokes). He’s 80 and I’m 62, so we have a lot in common though we have some generational differences. He also has become more liberal as he ages while I have become more conservative. We mostly talk sports amongst ourselves and with other regulars (cut it out with the jokes!); however, there is something unique every week that adds spice and wisdom to our conversations - he always has a question for me, just one question. This past week he asked me how I define the term “woke.” In its original parlance, the term applied to people who are aware of political and social issues and have open minds. He said that in the original definition, I am woke and he is correct. That said, when a conservative uses the term woke, and this is his inquiry, it’s more narrow in scope. Woke refers to any ideology that forces not only the acceptance of that ideology but coercing the celebration and participation in that ideology. Woke compels approved speech and seeks to suppress and censor those who disagree and woke is generally very much at odds with nature and science - in essence, it’s at odds with the truth. He understood where I was coming from since I was able to define what I mean by the term woke.

He seeks to understand my thoughts and positions and I seek the same. He absolutely hates Donald Trump and thinks he is evil incarnate; however, he is interested in my opinion of Trump (which is that I will vote for him if he is the Republican nominee, but I have other candidates that I prefer). He wants to know why I would vote for Trump and the answer is simple - sans COVID, Trump’s presidency produced fantastic economic results, no new wars, energy independence, Supreme Court nominees who eventually overturned Roe v. Wade, and a halfway coherent border policy - my family and I were better off. Also, Biden’s presidency has been a dumpster fire on top of a landfill fire in the middle of an apocalyptic wasteland.

The bottom line is that we disagree on several fronts, but agree on many others; however, we seek to understand the other. Isn’t this the way it should be? This isn’t the only friend that I have who disagrees with my positions and vice versa, but the rub is that we respect each other, love each other, and can make intelligent, evidence based arguments without harming our friendships.