"I need to make as much money as possible so the Republicans can’t hurt me," she said one day after beer and cigarettes outside. We'd been debating whether or not we had enough room for a tennis court in our back yard. I wanted a pool, but a tennis court is less upkeep and thus more appealing to my mother.
She, my mom that is, is a lesbian Democrat in favor of abortion and heavy gun control. The line made me laugh, because I know she’s right, even if it does sound somewhat hypocritical. I mean, immersing oneself in the ideals of the enemy to foil their plans in world domination? Sounded to me like a step was left out somewhere, and I told her so. A fight ensued, as many do in my household, me versus my mother and her girlfriend.
We've had similar fights over whether the media’s portrayal of the Taliban was wrong and whether gay marriage should be legalized. She always fights on the left. I tend towards the middle (being Libertarian in most cases) or sometimes to the extreme right in my arguing. My own opinions don’t even stray remotely into conservatism, but sometimes I just like to play devil’s advocate and sometimes I just like to fight. Every time, though, the argument ends with her saying "We just cannot talk about this" and walking away.
Which is why it bothered me so much when she said what she said tonight. We were watching a film that happened to feature Charlton Heston, and he happened to be holding a double-barreled shotgun.
"Oh of course he’s carrying a gun. He’s such a violent cock-less jackass," she said, or something like that.
I laughed, and called her one intolerant Democrat. She laughed, too, but was sort of taken aback. Her girlfriend chimed in with "We just cannot talk about this!" My mother, seeing that I didn’t understand her point at all felt it necessary to explain.
"Well, he likes guns, and so he’s trying to get everyone to have one. I’d be fine with him if he wasn’t trying to force his views onto everyone," she said, and I didn’t quite have an answer for that. I used to be very into shooting sports, and spent time reading NRA pamphlets and the website, and I don’t remember there being a law in the works to make it mandatory for every citizen to own a gun. I’m pretty sure they supported gun ownership as a choice.
But she will not believe otherwise. For a woman who has taken the route that can lead to persecution (she’s out and proud) she can be very closed-minded. For someone who wishes people would just accept her for who she is and what she believes, she can be quite stingy about doling out tolerance. She isn’t tolerant of the NRA, she isn’t supportive of the Republican’s right to believe what they want and she isn’t open to people who do not support homosexual marriage. She’s the anti-right winger with all of the hardcore closed-mindedness, just with a different moral code.
She isn't always pushing for more freedom, that I could understand, but sometimes her viewpoint is the one that diminishes personal freedoms. Strange that sometimes the people who most need and vie for tolerance in this world can be terribly intolerant of the people who don’t share their beliefs.