I live in Socialism Sucks t-shirts. One of the posters in my room clearly says that “Commies aren’t cool” and my social media pages are littered with pictures of me in a MAGA hat. I am obviously, to anyone that meets me, a conservative. Despite how involved politics is in my daily life, I had always said that I was open to dating someone on the opposite end of the spectrum.

I thought that differences on tax policies could be overlooked, that the constant disagreements may be a fun challenge, and that at the end of the day who you voted for wouldn’t change how I saw you. So when a card-carrying member of the Communist party came up to my conservative table with an interest in me, I didn’t immediately run the other way. I thought everything I had previously mentioned was still going to be true.

Until it wasn’t.

At first I was right, the disagreements were fun. Typically, this guy wouldn’t agree with me at the end of the day, no matter what the topic. New points were constantly brought up, I had to be on the edge of my seat – always ready to counter a point, and the all in good fun insults kept me entertained.  

These banter filled conversations could go on for hours, and I found our differences a point of flirtation, not contention. When he talked about how the Green New Deal was too moderate, it was something to laugh about. As he talked about donating to Bernie Sanders, it was almost endearing – but when he said he wanted to bring an end to all private property, it suddenly became a much more sobering conversation.

He didn’t like the Constitution. In fact, he saw it as something that should be thrown out so we could start all over again. He thought that people should have the freedom to just choose not to work and still be supported by those of us that did. He may have agreed that the communist regimes of the past were ruled by evil dictators, but he still thought their original visions were something to try to emulate.

Suddenly, it wasn’t just differences in tax policies or in environmental regulations – it was a difference in core values. The very things that shaped both of our worldviews, that lens that we saw society through, the ideal futures we were imagining, were intrinsically at opposite ends of the spectrum. And I realized I wasn’t okay with it. It was like we were playing a game of “How To Lose A Capitalist in 10 Days,” and he was really good at winning.

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None of this is to say that he is a bad guy because he isn’t. We are currently friends, and he has given me his blessing to write this article. What it is to say is that politics is much deeper than some of us would ever like to admit. Sometimes it’s deeper than surface level of preferred candidate differences. This wasn’t just about who we voted for or what pundits we preferred to watch. Those are things that can easily be overlooked after Election Day. This was about questions of freedom, individual responsibility, and on the role of society.

So, I didn’t date the socialist. I decided that disagreements on such a personal level every day wouldn’t always be fun and that it was best to say “Let’s just be friends.” I’m sure I will thank myself later when I am dealing with a lot less annoyance and a lot less heartbreak. I guess you could say at the end of this that Communism added another death to its tally, the death of this almost relationship.

Stormi R