The following is an open letter submitted to this publication anonymously. We are reprinting it in its entirety.
When are you and Grandpa going to stop fighting, Mom? When are you going to stop arguing with Mom, Grandpa?
Everyone’s entitled to their own opinions and feelings. Yes, we’re all playing a very intense game right now, but do we have to get so mean and catty with each other? Don’t we all, basically, want the same things? Don’t we all, basically, have the same ultimate goal, of getting rid of the bully who keeps making life miserable for everyone except the very small number of friends he has that are very loud and very angry? Isn’t it better for everyone if you guys stop going at each other like this, because it seems like it’s not going to do anything but make everyone around you bitter and cold to both of you, eventually.
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We’re all family, aren’t we?
Don’t you guys like each other anymore? Isn’t there someone who’s, like, way worse out there that we’re all trying to beat? I’m pretty sure if we had you write down what it is you want for our family, and then read your words to someone else, they’d think the same person wrote it all. What good does it do you two to fight so much right now, anyway? Only one of you is going to win, but if you were really on the ball, you’d realize that a uniting is the best way to make people who are cheering you on separately come together when necessary.
Grandpa, can’t you just admit that you might have said something in one context that could be misconstrued in a way to make that context change? I mean, all you have to do is say, “You know, I may not have been as artful in my word choice as I should have been, and probably said something that someone is taking the wrong way. But let me be very clear right here, and right now — I actually believe the opposite.”
And Mom, can’t you, like, just admit that Grandpa’s been fighting for the same things you have, but for a little while longer? Can’t you tell your friends that Grandpa definitely didn’t mean that every woman was incapable of winning ever, but that he’s also entitled to his own interpretation of the times we live in? I really don’t think that Gramps was calling you a liar on national TV, Mom. I think he was just too curt and dismissive and deflective. He should have just been more candid, but he wasn’t, but he didn’t call you a liar.
Neither one of you is completely blameless, and neither one of you is completely to blame. Neither one of you are perfect, and neither one of you are the complete and utter trainwreck the other family wants us to put in charge of driving the carpool van the next four years. We all have eyes, ears, and brains. Most of us can see that what you’re squabbling over right now isn’t worth putting a drunken, angry orangutan behind the wheel of the bus again over. It’s just not.
So, please, pretty please, with sugar on top — STOP. Make up; make amends. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but neither of one you can win without the help of the people who are currently backing the other. Neither one of you can succeed without help from the other, and sure does feel like this family is getting caught up in the same pointless bickering over the same overblown subjects as we all did last time around, which resulted in one of the worst four year periods of time, ever.
Right now, while you guys bicker over stupid stuff, there’s a madman on the loose. He’s trampling over every single thing he wants to, and his actions are amplified by the enabling, spineless cowards he surrounds himself with. Either one of you would make a damn-sight better option than he is to drive the van, and you’re too busy picking at each other in public to focus on taking down that asshole bully, which is a far, far more important task in front of you than belittling, insulting, and fighting with each other.
Competition is good. It’s healthy. It makes all parties involved stronger. But at some point, if it spills over into inane fights over things that matter way, way less than, say, oh, I don’t know…kidnapped brown babies in concentration camps at the border? It’s time to stop that shit. Yesterday.
Please consider it, for all of us. Please just give some thought to knocking off the petty fighting. It’s making a lot of us super-uncomfortable.
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Writer/comedian James Schlarmann is the founder of The Political Garbage Chute and his work has been featured on The Huffington Post. You can follow James on Facebook, Spotify, and Instagram, but not Twitter because Twitter is a cesspool.