One of the things I become more regularly aware of as I get older, and, at the same time, of which I am oft-reminded when I still frequently forget, is that my social sphere is a microcosm. When most folks around you believe what you believe, and like what you like, it can be easy to start to think that either a) that’s “normal”, or b) that everyone else believes and likes the same things.

I’ve had the conversation with several people recently centering on “I don’t understand how anyone could vote Republican”. Of course, “Republican” in this case not only refers to political affiliation, but also implies a large and nebulous set of social and cultural values typically more “conservative” than my own.

Basically, I don’t really understand how people can hold those opinions and values, either, because I don’t share them, but I know they exist. And I know they’re approximately half of the folks populating our continent.