The convention has come and gone and as the nation turns its attention towards the general election the Democrats hold hands and bask in the glow of their newly found unity. Not. In fact, Facebook has turned into the bloody field of a civil war battle and those old high-school friendships are evaporating faster than the morning dew in West Los Angeles. And don’t even bother to look at Twitter. There has been a post-convention shift, however, in the focus of the arguments with the Hillary supporters now desperately trying to convince the Berners that they have to join the great battle against He-Who-Cannot-Be-Named. The problem is, it doesn’t seem to be working and, if anything, is making the hardcore Bernie Believers more entrenched in their anti-HRC stance. So, in the interest of enlightened dialog, I (firmly #BernieOrBust, #StillSanders, and #DemExit) offer this handy guide to trying to convince the noble idealist in your feed to not throw the baby out with the bathwater.
1)Stop talking about the evils of Trump. Chances are your dear Bernie friend knows as much as you do, if not more, about horrible Voldermort. For them, however, this is not about Trump; this is about a broken political system.
2)Acknowledge their grief. Your poor, misguided relative has probably just donated many hours of time, and maybe even $27, to changing the world only to learn that the electoral system is neither fair nor transparent. They are hurt and wounded and need solace, not a lecture.
3)Commit yourself to working for campaign finance reform. One of the main reasons Bernie backers can’t rally behind Hillary is that we believe the primary was rigged against Bernie and that HRC colluded with the party and the corporate media. Whether you agree with this or not, all democrats are against Citizens United and for the first amendment, right? So just make some cooing noises and give him a hug and say that yes, we are all going to work to make our elections fair and honest.
4)Talk about shared goals. Ok, this is the important one; ask him what he is trying to achieve with his willful objections. What were the goals of the Bernie campaign? Don’t start talking about Hillary’s empty promises or the meaningless Democratic platform, but discuss how you as an individual share many of Bernie’s beliefs and how you, too, want to make these changes happen.
5)Offer to swap votes. Here we go, the big sell, you will support his efforts and he will help you achieve your goal of stopping Trump. If you live in a safe, sane, state such as California, you can easily afford to cast your vote for Jill Stein there by registering his dissent from the system while he helps assure the fascist orangutan doesn’t defile the Lincoln bedroom. If you also live in a swing state, reach out to your Hillary loving Facebook friends and find someone for him to swap with. This is the sanest, simplest way to procure family peace, nobody has to argue or try to convince anyone of anything; just agree to disagree and everyone gets what they want.
6)Offer to buy him a ticket to Burning Man. This is obviously a desperate last-ditch attempt, but it just might work if everything else fails. Deep down he probably doesn’t want Trump to win and by this time thinks the whole election is just a bunch of horse crap anyway. Burning Man tickets are expensive and with your subsidy he can afford a nice stash of mind-altering medicine to help him forget the whole thing. But there are only 50,000 or so tickets available so maybe jump on this fast! (Take note of this strategy, HRC, it might be cheaper than all those anti-Trump ads you are planning to blanket us with). If bribes and corruption are good enough for the Democratic party, they ought to work for your Facebook feed also.
Good luck gentle warrior, we will see you again in four years!