Modern politics ruins living history

26 Feb

So lately I feel my hobby, the hobby I’ve had for 10 years, is being ruined for me. Every living history person I’ve come across, with the exception of like 3 or 4 are the complete political opposites of me. Now normally this wouldn’t even come up, and I would prefer for it to stay that way. Unfortunately, through facebook they’ve found out that I completely disagree with them. I post something up for all my like minded friends to see, and then they see this and start giving me shit.

I thought I had the settings right where they wouldn’t see such posts, but I guess not. And now they argue with me over facebook and sometimes make snide comments in camp. It’s ruining LH for me! I’m not friends with them because of politics, I’m friends with them because of a common interest in history, but now that’s being eroded. I’m starting to feel like I don’t belong in LH any more, which depresses me because it’s something I’ve done since I was 12!

It just seems like every re-enactor I come across is a conservative of some flavor. Not sure why exactly. I wish they could keep the modern politics to themselves. I know they feel the same way about my and my facebook posts, and I’ve apologized to them and fixed the settings, but it still makes it feel awkward when I go out for events. It’s even worse when one of them makes a quip in camp. I’m on the verge of quitting….

9 Responses to “Modern politics ruins living history”

  1. The_Conservative_Lie February 26, 2010 at 12:33 am #

    That’s because, at heart, conservatives are mean spirited. Listen to ANY conservative talk show host for ten minutes and you get the picture. Unlike you, they can’t keep the snide comments to themselves, even though you probably have several you could offer.
    Modern conservatism, neo-conservatism, is based on self-serving short-sighted ideas and rooted in fear. Fear of change, of differences, of losing control.
    I feel for you. I was in the army for 17 years. Liberals are a small minority there.

  2. Charlie February 26, 2010 at 9:23 am #

    GP, I have to respectfully and wholeheartedly disagree with the response from “The Conservative Lie”. I don’t see any evidence that TCL knows anything about the Living History hobby in his/her reply. TCL’s response told nothing about LH, TCL only repeated broad-brushed negative stereotypes of Conservatives. I am an ex-Conservative because I cannot support the basic premises of what currently passes for Conservative political values. GP, you and I both know people who consider themselves Conservative who are kind, generous, decent people. They just disagree with us on politics.

    Why do so many LH’ers seem to be Conservative?, I can speculate that it is related to the point that so much of our LH hobby deals with war, fighting, weapons, etc., the stuff ‘good Liberals’ (if you will forgive my own temporary use of a stereotype) are supposed to eschew. Well, again, stereotypes are misleading, and I try to avoid them when trying to understand people whenever possible.

    As to ‘modern politics ruining the LH hobby’, I would like to make the case that modern politics is currently ruining all of civilized society. It’s ruining our ability to talk, work and play together with people of differing views because we are being brainwashed by the Conservative –and- Liberal media, pundits, politicians, etc. to see those friends and neighbors with whom we disagree as the -enemy-! That is so terribly wrong. So don’t forgo a hobby you love for political unpleasantries, because it’s the same everywhere else. I would encourage you to consider the advice of Gandhi, and, “Be the change you wish to see in the world”.

    I would also disagree with TCL’s seeming implication that Liberals are the kind-hearted ones while the dastardly Conservatives are far more likely to make snide remarks. Well, no. We are all, Conservative, Liberal, Egalitarian, whatever, guilty of the snide remark when we are off our guard or we think we are entertaining our peers. I’m sorry, but it’s true. What we must do, again referring to Gandhi’s advice, is to each watch his or her own self, own camp, and keep it aware of the damage such remarks make to continuance of good relationships with those around us.

    GP, we have participated in LH together, and it was a pleasure. I hope to have the opportunity to do so again someday. As you know, though our political beliefs are not as far apart as the traditional Conservative/Liberal gap, we disagree in our fundamental beliefs of religion. That’s OK. It doesn’t matter. I would never disrespect your beliefs nor make snide remarks, nor try to change your mind. I respect, receive and accept you as you are, and hope you do the same. The LH hobby, like the rest of the world, needs this sort of committed-friend sharing of experience to see as an example. And if you retreat from the LH hobby now, that is one less living LH example people will get to see.

    And if we ever get to do an LH event together again, we can stand in the face of our neo-Con friends and show them how it’s done.

    Best regards,

    Charlie aka Oli Svensson, aka Rhys ap Maddog, aka Brother Martin.

  3. godlesspaladin February 26, 2010 at 11:04 am #

    Hey Charlie, thanks for the comment. I must say I agree with you on every single point. 🙂 It’s truly a pleasure to get your feedback.
    Warm regards
    –GP

  4. Kelsey March 6, 2010 at 10:28 am #

    Modern politics are ruining the hobby for a lot of folks. I focus mainly on 20th century wars, with occasional 18th century events, and it’s particularly bad among the 20thC folks. I have had the exact same problem with facebook that you have, in which I post something for my friends, and the reenactors I have on my friends list end up completely hijacking the conversation and scaring off my friends. Not only that, but they’re folks I reenact with on a regular basis, which can make things awkward at events.

    I’ve found that modern politics weasel their way into events as well. I hate that I can’t attend a WWII event’s after-hours campfire sessions because they inevitably dissolve into hating “libruls” and talking about how Obama’s gonna take away their guns. We’re at a reenactment, folks…can’t we talk about history?

    My boyfriend’s German unit almost dissolved due to modern politics. Some of the members started posting right winger shit to the unit email group, and in the end, the folks who were uncomfortable with it ended up leaving for awhile, until the commander finally stepped up and told the wingers to STFU and stop talking about modern stuff on a REENACTING LIST.

    Anyway, sorry for the long comment. It’s a rather large pet peeve of mine.

  5. godlesspaladin March 7, 2010 at 6:09 pm #

    Thanks for the comment Kelsey. 🙂 Glad to see I’m not the only one

  6. Kelsey March 9, 2010 at 9:44 am #

    By the way – did I correctly see that you’ll be at MTA?

  7. Marc with a C March 9, 2010 at 10:25 am #

    Yeah, I get the same reaction from a lot of reenactors. It was all well and good before Facebook, but now it’s like it’s impossible to post something about your beliefs without all your conservative friends jumping on you for it. Which is fine, but when you only see said friends in limited social environments like the hobby, it’s annoying as hell.

    I have this one dude who’s a dyed in the wool teabagger who seriously has a bad case of verbal diarrhea. Which is fine, except if you post anything even moderately political, he fills up your FB pace with multi-comment length rants about what you just posted. Which is fine, I guess, since he’s a fat farb with less than a college education, but still. Ah well.

  8. godlesspaladin March 9, 2010 at 11:47 am #

    Kelsey, yes, I plan on being at MTA. I was debating if I was going to go because of this stuff, but I have to drop off some things for some people, and pick up some things from others, so I kinda have to be there.

  9. Kelsey March 9, 2010 at 2:41 pm #

    Cool. I’ll look for you. I’ll be going as an Algerian War French correspondent.

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