News & Politics

Obama Shares Advice on How to Argue with Family Around the Thanksgiving Table

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden share a laugh in the Oval Office July 21, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I sure hope you’re going to have a great time arguing with family and friends over dinner.

Say what?

Yeah, that’s basically what former President Obama thinks you should be doing on this beautiful holiday:

“Before arguing with friends or family around the Thanksgiving table, take a look at the science behind arguing better,” he writes on Twitter. “And it’ll never hurt to try this: ‘Listen to people, get them to think about their own experience, and highlight your common humanity’.”

The 44th American president then links to an article at Vox on how to “argue better — with science.”

Americans are now being told by former President Obama that it’s normal to argue with family and friends about politics while you’re supposedly enjoying your Thanksgiving dinner. This is just sad. Sad.

I’m as obsessed with politics as President Obama himself, but — please, American friends — listen to me on this one: do not argue about politics today. Not. At. All. It’s bad enough that you’re reading this article on this beautiful day (what are you doing?!? Go enjoy family life!), but trying to convince family and friends today that your take on politics trumps theirs, is insane.

It’s important to think about politics. Leaders matter. Many policies — regarding education, taxes, health care, immigration, and so on — do have an impact on people’s daily lives. But Thanksgiving dinner isn’t when you’re supposed to talk about those issues. Instead, you’re supposed to spend time with friends and family, and make clear to them that you love them deeply; that, no matter what, you are grateful for them and to them.

So, here’s my advice to you: do what I’ve always done when President Obama thought he should share some “sage” advice with the world…

Ignore it. Completely and utterly.