As one who enjoys witty political cartoons regardless of the message communicated, it is easy for me to laugh at cartoons that poke fun at people and causes I care about. I may not agree with the message delivered, but I still appreciate the wit. That makes all the difference in how I react inwardly to attacks on people and ideas important to me.
There has been much in the news in recent days about social issues that most Americans hold strong opinions regarding. I have an opinion on the matter as well. I’ll let that opinion be made known in the voting booth when the time comes. Meanwhile, I’ll let others publicly debate such issues. I want my public and online persona to be focused around other matters.
With this being a presidential election year, we will have no shortage of political cartoons and satire in newspapers, online and in other media. That’s expected and welcome in a (somewhat) free society. In the fall when the Republican and Democratic conventions are held, I’ll be one that watches every possible minute of both, soaking it all in. Of course, I’ll be fist pumping, applauding, smiling and agreeing during one, while shaking my head, disagreeing and calling people idiots in the other, my blood pressure slowly rising. But I’ll still watch both to better understand each side, and I’ll find points of agreement and disagreement with both. I will laugh at cleverly written lines delivered at both conventions that jab the other candidate and party – not because I agree with the message behind them, but because I appreciate clever humor and wit.
So my advice to you regarding humor that pokes fun at people and causes you believe in is to shift your focus when that happens from the particular message to the cleverness and wit of the one behind it. That may just help keep your blood pressure down as well as keep you out of unnecessary and unproductive arguments with others whose minds and points of view aren’t about to change any more than yours are.
Leap year lesson #128 is Appreciate the wit in humor if not the message.