The polite advice to 'never discuss religion or politics' has got to go. Nothing is more important or more deserving of discussion in a democracy than politics. I ran for Congress and discovered a remarkable thing--we the people have the ability to discuss politics in a civill manner.
Talk radio and the political TV programs discourage political discussion because they show inflexibility, unwillingness to consider other points of view and the inevitable breakdown into demagoguery and ad hominem attacks. Because every show does this, together they paint the false picture that this is the unalterable nature of political disucssion. Ladies and gentlemen, all of this is just show business to keep you tuned to the station so that more soap, cars and erectile disfunction drugs can be sold.
I ran as a Libertarian because I believe both government subsidized parties are beholden to corporate interests and are incapable of representing the people. Running as a third party candidate meant I was always trying to reach both R's & D's. My district contains an amazing cross section economically, socially, racially. It was a fertile field for a riot if the picture MSM paints of political discussion was accurate. IT NEVER HAPPENED.
Only rarely did anyone spout one of the absolutist statements you hear on the radio or TV. When they did, I just asked the person to tell me more about why they believed that--what about that was important to them. Typically that lead to the person immediately moving to a non-absolutist position.
To save this country, we must talk with one another. Agree to listen. Agree to disagree. Facism wins through assumptions that everyone agrees and fear to confront a perceived majority. Talking to one another here on Daily Kos is a great start, but we have to get out of the echo chamber and talk to our friends, neighbors and coworkers.
This is how we defeat fascism, one conversation, one person, at a time.