General Etiquette > Family and Children

Avoiding a political argument, politely.

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cicero:

--- Quote from: Docslady21 on February 18, 2013, 04:10:27 AM ---If it had been me, I never would have asked him to help me find the story. I would have found something extremely fascinating across the room, outside, or in my car to examine. Someone angrily approaching me to discuss politics is not my idea of a good time. So, I guess my advices is: 1. Try to escape. 2. If you can't escape, try to change the subject. Or, 3. Play dead?

Look, there's nothing wrong with just saying, "Oh goodness look at the time! Excuse me!" and walking away. He doesn't need to know why you care about the time or what you mean. I'm also perfectly happy to allow certain individuals to have the perception that I am incredibly dense and shallow about politics. Meaning, play dumb. "Oh, those things bore me. Did you see the latest episode of Duck Dynasty?" or "I don't even know what you're talking about. I never watch the news." They don't need to know how much I enjoy politics because I know that their version of discussion involves lots of shouting. =)

--- End quote ---
yup.

you don't *have to* discuss politics with anyone, just because they started a conversation.

and you don't even have to play dumb - just repeat "i don't discuss politics." and bean dip

TurtleDove:
I don't think you handled this poorly, but I think that if your goal was to not engage you could have handled it differently.  As other posters mentioned, you could have said, "No, I didn't see that. Beandip?"  What I generally say (because I also avoid discussing politics) is, "I don't want to discuss it."  I've been adament that I don't discuss politics except for very vaguely for so long that it rarely comes up anymore!

bopper:

--- Quote from: Mel the Redcap on February 18, 2013, 04:36:14 AM ---I think you handled it perfectly! You made sure you had the facts, and you defused him without actually having to state a position of your own. Go you!  ;D

--- End quote ---

I agree!  Also you have taught Fred that coming to you won't = an argument, but you will make him think.  He may or may not want that.

MrTango:
If you really didn't want to discuss it at all with him, you could have said "Hmm.  I haven't had a chance to read that yet.  I'll take a look when I have time."

Virg:
snappylt wrote:

"I guess my question is would there have been a better way to have handled it?"

I agree with Mel The Redcap that you handled it beautifully.  You may have skirted on an argument, but you avoided getting riled up, you engaged without losing control, you got your info on the issue straight and you turned it back to him with a clear statement about where it would lead, both to defuse the fight and bring it to a close at the same time.  What you did was a textbook case of commanding the issue and guiding the discussion.

For someone looking for advice in avoiding political discussions, you did a pretty darn good job steering one.  You might consider a career in politics yourself.

Virg

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