Have I told you about my neighbors? They are a lovely, inter-racial couple with 4 little boys, all living in a 2-bedroom condo. The dad is a pastor, or something. He is the white one. Mom, whose sole responsibility seems to be to home-school the children, is a lovely woman. She is black. The boys are well behaved, sweet, smart, and love to make guns out of sticks.
The boys play in front of my place. They often throw things and hit my window. It hasn't broken yet, but surely it will. They also like to play with The Frustrated Son, but he is getting a little too old for the little guys. He still goes out and plays with them occasionally. He comes home to tell me the outrageous religious nonsense that spews from the innocent mouths of these little, brainwashed boys.
The oldest boy came to the door yesterday asking to play. TFS was not here, but we chatted for a moment. I asked him if he was excited about Obama's inauguration (thinking he would be excited, being half-black and tolerant). He said not really, but his mom was. He said his dad wanted McCain because Obama voted to kill babies.
What to say? This poor little guy, who is home-schooled and steeped in religious nonsense, has to navigate his mother's support for Obama against his father's support for McCain, knowing--erroneously--Obama is a baby-killer, and mom likes him! Talk about confusion!
My dilemma was this: do I tell him his dad is wrong? Do I try to validate the possibility that dad could be right, but given reality, he's probably wrong? Do I say "always listen to your mother!"?
I chose to tell him that his dad was wrong, that there was already a law about that, and Obama didn't vote to kill babies. The kid said I was wrong, but Obama will be a good president. What a confused little dude.
I face this kind of decision/dilemma a lot. When I hear someone say something wrong, or unprovable, I feel the need to clarify. This gets me in trouble. Maybe I should just shut-up?