Dr. Helen

Thanksgiving togetherness: Nearly one-third of all adults will actively avoid political conversations

It’s that time again: Thanksgiving is when the extended family gathers around and — hopefully — does not talk about politics. In a recent Reuters/Ipsos poll, it was found that one in three adults does not plan to talk politics at the holidays:

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Americans will sit down next week for what has become a holiday tradition in the United States: tiptoeing through a turkey dinner without mentioning the president.

Nearly one-third of all adults will actively avoid political conversations when they see friends and family over the Thanksgiving and December holidays, according to a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll released on Friday. About half said they do not expect to discuss politics at all…

According to the poll, 31 percent of adults “will be intentionally avoiding political conversations with family and friends” over the holidays. Another 48 percent “do not typically engage in political conversations” during holiday gatherings, and 21 percent will engage in political conversations with others “even if we disagree on issues.”

Trump voters were just as interested in shifting away from political conversations as voters who supported Clinton. Women were more likely than men to avoid politics, and Baby Boomers were more likely than Millennials to avoid the topic.

It’s probably best to avoid politics if you want to keep your blood pressure low and enjoy the Turkey; or, conversely,  don’t invite people who insult you like the niece in the article mentioned above who told her aunt she was a bigot (!) for not supporting Obama:

Beal said her family learned this new holiday etiquette after a particularly stressful Thanksgiving in 2008. Obama had just been elected to his first term, and Beal’s niece called her a bigot for not supporting him.

“Well that was the end of that,” Beal said. “I decided I’m not going to talk politics anymore. I’m not those things they call me.”

I would not have been so polite–that is really ugly behavior that warrants more than just keeping quiet about politics.

How about readers — what are your plans for discussing politics at the holidays this year?