There will be those who tell you that people can be friends with other people belonging to a different political party or religion, whose financial and social status do not align with theirs, who are from another region perhaps and speak a language Greek to them, whose culture and traditions are alien…. so on and so forth. And they will be absolutely right.

But… ideological differences are a different matter altogether. Where ideologies differ, getting along becomes difficult, whether friends or family. Some tell me otherwise. Excuse me, how the heck can you be friends with those who believe some people are lesser than others? Or that it is okay to lynch, murder or kill yet others?

Personally I find it difficult to breathe the same air as those who believe that people from a religion they hate should be hounded out of the country. Some are circumspect about expressing their hatred, others are in your face about it. Then there are those who outright deny any such fact till they are blue in the face. But their support for a party whose agenda is out there in the open for all to see belies the blueness of their face and lays bare their complicity.

Then there are those who wave their placard of friendship with someone or other who belongs to the religion they privately despise as proof that they themselves are such noble souls. Aren’t they friends with, you know, THEM? “I have a friend/friends from Religion X!”, they announce in saintly tones, suggesting that alone elevates them to a higher plane. Where’s the applause? You can almost see their expectation of a gold medal, and if not silver or bronze, at the very least, a pat on the back.

If it’s me they are announcing this to, all they get is a withering look, or sometimes no look at all for I’d be busy looking out of the window at the plants and trees, breathing in and out deeply, trying to stay calm. What the @!#%&*### heck kind of thinking is this? You openly support a political party that hounds people of Religion X, which fact you approve of in private, and then expect the Nobel Peace Prize for being friends with a neighbor or two who belong to said religion? Gah!

Hello! Here’s a suggestion for you: Lose your hypocrisy already. Stop waving that meaningless placard in my face, you’ll be getting no awards from me. And while you are at it, get moving, I need some fresh air.

© Shail Mohan 2019