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Family time

I've seen a lot of commentary about the difficulties of going home for the holidays in these divided political times -- people stressing out about the prospect of political arguments, coming up with strategies for dealing with the bigoted uncle, and so forth. Although I have my own family stresses, I count myself very lucky that politics is not one of them. (At least not among my mother's family. My dad's family, and T's family, are another story, but they aren't local -- when I talk about getting together with family, I generally mean my parents and brothers, and my mom's siblings and their kids). We fall at various points along the liberal spectrum, but at the core we have similar enough beliefs and values that when we argue politics, we're debating the details, not more fundamental questions like whether racism exists. As I mentioned at one point, it was a relief to be able to assume that no one at tonight's dinner voted for Trump (I do have one brother who's a Bernie Bro, and I expect he voted Green Party; we steered clear of that particular topic, which is fine since he lives in California where his presidential vote was essentially irrelevant) or supports his policies and beliefs. Not to say there weren't debates or arguments -- we're a big loud family who likes to talk about controversial topics, so of course there were points of disagreement -- but because they came from a place of fundamental agreement and respect, we're able to have actual conversations that rarely end in hurt feelings. It might be one of the ways I am most fortunate in my family of origin, and this year of all years, I don't take it for granted.

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