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At FlagandBanner.com, we sell the American flag every single day. Flags are an emotional product and our customers are passionate about why they are purchasing. They purchase from all over the world and hold every different political and religious view. We listen to their stories every single day. Over the years we have had to develop the skill of listening without judgment. This makes us uniquely qualified in this politically polarizing climate to offer you a couple of strategies to navigate your holiday gathering.

You will likely find yourself in one or two positions. Either you are the odd man out, which means you are the only one with your political view in the bunch (because everyone that agrees with you is eating somewhere else) or you are in the position of trying to ease the conflict, in which case we call you the hostess with the mostess. You don’t necessarily have to be hosting the function to play this role, you are just the one that hates conflict enough that you will do anything to keep the peace. Whichever camp you find yourself in, here is a strategy that will work for you.

  1. Odd Man Out: If you find yourself the odd man out and politics comes up, pretend you are Neo in the Matrix and your mouth has just been melted shut. It makes sipping that glass of wine a little more tricky but at least you won’t start World War III. Afterall, people like to hear themselves talk and don’t really care what you think. Let them have the floor. At the end of the evening, you can pat yourself on the back and know you were the bigger person for allowing them to have a wonderful holiday without any disagreement!


  1. Hostess with the Mostess: If you have guests that bring up opposing politics, you better think fast! Dance!  Sing!  Turn up the music. Tell a joke.  In other words, distract the conversation.  Throw yourself on those train tracks and derail the disagreement with a little humor. Stock up on some good jokes beforehand so you will have them readily available. DON’T take sides. “You have a point” and “I never thought of it that way” are lifesavers. You can always use the foolproof backup, “Well, thank God we were born in America so we can have this discussion.” Of course, that might be dicey if there are atheists in the room. Be as agreeable as possible. You have plenty of time to talk about how stupid everyone was after they leave!

Holiday gatherings are stressful enough without the added flavor of divisive politics peppered throughout the conversation. This year let the unifying feeling of patriotism sooth the political prattering. No matter which way you lean, left or right, we are all Americans. The melting pot. The great experiment. We each are part of that experiment. Let’s remember during this holiday season that it’s our patriotism, not our politics, that will see us through. Play nice. These people are your family!

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