Politics, money, religion. Three topics the Miss Manners in you is supposed to steer the f*ck away from in all social predicaments where peace is prioritized. However, seeing as most interesting conversations inadvertently lead back to one of these three topics, sitting in front of someone with no opinions on politics, money or religion, would lead me to believe they are less of a Miss Manners and more of a Miss-Still-Waiting-For-That-GED.
Considering the befuddling progression of the current US election, political discourse, in particular, has become an integral part of every dinner conversation, secondary only to the menu options. That said, how does this affect the already-perplexing dynamic of dating, where two people are not simply exchanging opinions, but evaluating each other on those insignificant things such as, you know, compatible values? Are opposing political views a crystal ball of doom, or could they play into the whole ‘opposites attract’ adage? Curious to find an answer to these taxing questions, I decided to grill my friends, singles and couples alike, on their stance on this matter!
“Relationships can endure a lot–religion, long distances, and even evil mother in laws. But politics–not so sure. As a democratic liberal could you imagine living with a Trump supporter–or vice versa? Political views represent values, morals, ideologies and how we behave as a people. That stuff can tear people apart. – Rebecca Suhrawardi, fashion journalist living in New York
“To me, political view matters in terms of social beliefs. I could date a Republican who is conservative fiscally or with foreign policy, but not a Republican who is pro-life or who would shun a gay child. My husband is more liberal, an atheist, loves Bernie. Into socialist stuff, but probably because he hasn’t had to pay for it here. He looks at England for his benchmark though – free schools, free Medicine. Like an American, I care about me and my immediate family more, so I’m selfish with political views. I mean, I care about America, but, like a true American, I care about me more.” – Ukrainian raised in New York, married to a Brit
“Political beliefs can be religiously held, if you’re dating someone with strong ones, you better be willing to go through with the circumcision.” – Raised in London, married to a Russki
“Fuck yes, they matter. I don’t particularly care about someone’s opinions on taxes, but politics and morals go hand in hand, especially lately. I am immediately suspicious and inclined to dislike anyone who would be pro- Trump or pro- Cruz, for example, because supporting those men has nothing to do with political conservatism and everything to do with racism, sexism, homophobia and a commitment to white supremacy we haven’t seen in 60 years. I also like my men educated and dignified, neither of which run rampant with the GOP’s front-runners’ groupies. If a guy thinks Obama is weak on terror, fine. But if a guy thinks Obama is a Muslim working for terrorists, or that my gay friends shouldn’t be allowed to get married because he doesn’t personally ‘get’ homosexuality, or that his desire to block women from having health care is justified because #Jesus, then, no thank you, I don’t want a drink, I’m sick, I have a boyfriend, I’m married, I have a lethal contagious disease, and I’m pretty sure I have more in common with your dog than I do with you. There are just political red flags that go hand in hand with people’s character. Nothing educated ever follows the words ‘These f*ing liberals and their …’ or ‘The bible CLEARLY says…’ or ‘The government’s trying to take away our guns!’ You just kind of know what you’re working with straight off the bat. Which is not a date.” – Jordan Nadler, American journalist living in Paris
“Apathy is the #1 turnoff. While I would talk my way into a verbal sparring match with a Trump supporter, the most important thing to me is being compassionate about causes. We are so lucky to live and love in a democratic and free country, and if you’re taking it for granted, we probably won’t get along so well.” – Tanya Brown, raised in California and living in Brooklyn
“Very important. If you talk them, I hate you. Bye Felicia. When you grew up with Trump at your family gatherings you shouldn’t talk politics in 2016.” – American, born and raised in New York
“As someone who comes from a country where the right wing party is still more leftist than the Democrats in America, I find the whole idea of the Republican party pretty horrendous. It’s like, “Oh! You’re a minority, female, religion we don’t believe in, poor person — the list goes on — let’s dream up another way we can screw you!” So for that reason, if I was dating someone and I found out she sympathized, or worse, endorsed THAT party, I’d have to cut things off then and there. I don’t like race-based fear mongering, I find the idea of lowering taxes for the super rich laughable, and I do like the idea of providing assistance to those in need. Everyone’s entitled to their own opinion of course, but if you feel the opposite way to me about any of the aforementioned, we’re probably not going to be a good love match.” – Isaac Hindin-Miller of Isaac Likes, New Zealander living in New York
“They are important to the extent that one cares for them – unless the person you’re dating is voting for Trump. In that case, run for the hills.” – Victoria de la Fuente, Peruvian living in Paris
“Personally, I wouldn’t be able to date a socialist with political views bordering on communist. I myself find my political views teetering back and forth, largely influenced by socio-economic conditions and hormones, so saying that I wouldn’t date any particular person is hypocritical, but I am against any form of extremism.” – Russian-American mother of two, living in Paris, married to a Frenchie
“You will never love someone for it, but you’ll definitely hate-fuck the shit out her/him if you disagree. It’s not a plus, it’s a status quo. When you date, you evaluate the person. You either earn or loose points. If you have the same views, good, but it will never be the reason you fall for someone. However, a disagreement on political views will not be so insignificant – you’ll automatically see the person from another perspective.” – Advertising exec, raised in Paris and married to a Russki
“Political views are important. Anything too extreme beyond weirds me out. And you’ve got to love those fiscally conservative guys who choose their $ over civil liberties as they cast their vote. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had hot sex with them, but long term– it’s a no go.” – Born & bred New Yorker
“It can in the long-term lead to issues, because essentially it’s reflective of your values. And someone who doesn’t understand you can’t do anything for you.” – Nigerian-American editor, raised in New York
“If you vote for Trump, don’t you dare try to touch me with a ten-foot pole” – American living in New York
“My romantic relationship with someone would never last if you’re against the beliefs I stand for. A person’s political views are the shadow of their personality. Tell me how you want the world to be and I’ll tell you who you are. The way you see the world is a reflection of your values, therefore is who you are.” – Maria Francisca Riaño, Colombian living in Greenpoint, where she runs the incredible Botica apothecary!
And now, your turn to chime into the conversation! Emotionally uninvested? Trump for the dump? Every voice matters, so let’s hear yours in the comment section below!