Liberals: Here are 10 Questions You Should Ask Your Republican Relatives This Thanksgiving

THANKSGIVING-DINNERIt’s Thanksgiving so I’m trying to keep things a little lighter today in the spirit of the holiday. But as with most Thanksgivings, there’s sure to be many awkward moments all across the country with liberal and conservative friends and family around the dinner table. And it seems like no matter how hard we might try to keep the conversation light, politics is often brought up at some point. So I thought I’d help out my fellow liberals by giving all of you 10 questions you should ask your conservative family members this Thanksgiving, if you feel so inclined to go down that road.

Well alright, without further delay let’s get started!

1) If Republicans are so fiscally responsible, why was President Eisenhower (in the 1950′s) the last Republican president to balance the budget?

2) If our Founding Fathers wanted this nation to be based on Christianity, why don’t the words “Christian” or “Christianity” appear even once in our Constitution?

3) How many official reports debunking the numerous fake Republican Benghazi conspiracies will it take before conservatives let it go?

4) The United States has around 300-330 million guns (and that number’s growing) circulating within our neighborhoods, while gun violence continues to claim around 9,000 lives every year. How many guns will it take to decrease gun violence in America?

5) How can someone enjoy their own personal “religious freedom” if they’re having to abide by laws and policies based on somebody else’s?

6) Can you please describe the difference between a “bad guy with a gun” and a “good guy with a gun” – before shots are fired – if every single American is walking around openly carrying guns?

7) Since there hasn’t been a single instance of a refugee committing a terrorist attack in the United States (and we’ve accepted tens of thousands since 9/11), what facts do you have to support your anti-refugee rhetoric? And how can you call yourself a Christian while opposing helping refugees when Jesus Christ himself… was a refugee?

8) How many millions of jobs need to be created, how high must stocks soar and how far does unemployment need to fall before you’ll admit President Obama has been a success economically?

9) If supporting the Confederate flag is “just about history,” then couldn’t people say the same thing about the Nazi swastika?

10) What freedoms have you lost since Barack Obama became president?

Well that will wrap up this holiday-themed edition of “10 Questions.” I hope everyone has a happy and safe Thanksgiving and feel free to hit me up on Twitter or Facebook and let me know if you used these questions – and what kind of responses you got from your Republican friends and family.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


Facebook comments

  • Frank DiMarcotte

    Liberals always seem to be in an existential crisis about their self-worth. Do you really need to go to a Thanksgiving gathering armed with talking points and questions to ask relatives about politics? Why not just go and enjoy the company, eat some good food, watch some football and just chill out?

    If you need a list of questions on this day, you’re kind of a phony. Just be yourself for once. You might like it.

    • Vetguy1234

      You mean like the constant’take our country back’ said 5 seconds after democratically electing the first black president…..or the constant ‘don’t tread on me’…or the well known claim of him being not a true American mean that type of faux existential crisis…?

      • Colleen A Shea

        I recently beat Stage IV cancer, if my family corners my teen and tries to tell her I got cancer because I don’t love Jesus (again), there will be a problem and I won’t be throwing talking points around, lol. One nutcase (an attorney) actually wants to rewrite the Constitution because founding fathers were not “Christian” enough, gays should be executed and there should be no separation of church and state. I can pretend to agree with them re football, will try to keep conversation on that. “Being myself” is easy for me but very difficult for them.

      • Judy Jackson

        My family is up in the Texas Panhandle so I don’t get to see them on holidays. My in-laws are fundies & I avoid them on holidays. I work retail so I have an automatic excuse.

      • Frank DiMarcotte

        You’re angry, bitter and butt-hurt on this Thanksgiving Day. That’s the existential crisis I’m describing, vetguy. You’re just the type who would appreciate Allen’s list of questions.

        Try to memorize them, you won’t want to get caught pulling out a piece of paper from your back pocket to read the questions. Especially after 4 big glasses of Mogen David.

      • openminded_montanan

        So, Frank, if you are so content and jazzed about warm fuzzy family gatherings, why are you commenting on this obviously political page so early on Thanksgiving morning, throwing out criticisms about “butt-hurt liberals”?
        Doesn’t your wife need some help in the kitchen?

      • Nick Wride

        He might not be able to find the kitchen. That’s where the women-folk belong.

      • BobLoblaw

        That whole “take our country back” thing kills me. I usually ask “take back? who has our country?”. Never once has anyone replied with a logical answer. It is always something racist or they try to make a non-funny joke.

      • strayaway

        It would be nice to take the Country back from pathological liars, warmongers, corporatists, thieves (may be redundant with corporatists), elitists, economic traitors, and police state apparatchiks.

    • strayaway

      Someone at the table is likely to say, “Shut up and eat your tofu turkey, We bought it just for you.”

      • Frank DiMarcotte


      • markmac123

        Their conservatives, remember? They wouldn’t buy the tofu, their Con friends at Walmart would think they’re gay.

    • markmac123

      No we go armed with rebuttals because conservatives are generally loud – mouthed people who like to spout their views and think others should just accept their ignorance.

    • Nick Wride

      Conservatives are usually the loudest, drunkest, most argumentative assholes at family holiday gatherings.

    • Kyle Walker

      If liberals are the ones in a perpetual existential crisis then why is it that conservatives are the ones who are resisting anything Obama tries even if it is beneficial to them? How would you explain all the second amendment rallies after every school shooting, the “Don’t Tread on Me” flags, the impeach Obama, Obama is a Muslim/communist/socialist/facist claims, the persistent attempt to prove Benghazi was a conspiracy, the persistent denial of Obama’s citizenship, the denial of climate change, the denial of the opinions of experts, the House of Representatives delaying the legislation process then claiming nothing is being done to address the nation’s issues, the conservative claims that Obama is overstepping his powers while conservative leaders shut down the government…? Liberals aren’t the ones in an existential crisis, conservatives have been in one since November 4th 2008, and the proof is in the pudding of the last six years

  • K1Peninsula1

    Family is more important. Happy Thanks Giving.

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  • Jim Bean

    Evidently the key to happiness for a Liberal is mastering the art of self delusion.

    1. Because Dems won’t allow it. March 22, 2013: “Deficit hawk Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., called a vote late Thursday on a motion to send the Democrats’ plan back to committee with instructions to figure out how to balance it by 2023. Every Democrat except one — Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia — opposed it, while all Republicans voted for it. The measure failed on a 46-53 vote.”

    2. The ‘founding of our country” was heralded by the Declaration of Independence (not the Constitution) which includes the words, ‘endowed by their Creator.’

    3. It defies human nature to believe anything said by someone who is proven to be a pathological liar.

    4. As the number of guns in citizens hands has increased, the number of violent crimes has decreased proportionately. So I guess the answer is 300 to 330 million.

    5. One would need to know what the author would ‘enjoy’ doing that is prevented by religious law or policy to answer.

    6. That’s like asking, ‘how does one tell a peaceful black person from a violence-inclined black person before the violence occurs – a question that the author would recoil in horror from. The author needs to work on his inclinations to profile people.

    7. Yes

    8. The number doesn’t matter. In order to give Obama credit for any of those things there has to be some evidence that Obama is directly responsible for it and there is none. The fact that he happened to seated in the stadium as it occurred means nothing during a cause & effect analysis.

    9. Why wasn’t the New York Yankee’s pennant used for this analogy rather than the confederate flag?

    10. The freedom to choose the health insurance plan I wanted. The freedom to have my wishes represented by my elected officials in the immigration decision. The freedom to let me and my kid decide what said kid will eat for lunch in school.

    • kacky

      You never had those freedoms in the first place.

    • Dennis Frisby

      Which ‘creator’ would that be?

    • Dennis Frisby

      I’m sure the founders meant for you to have all of those ‘freedoms’ in #10 🙂

    • strayaway

      10. You forgot to mention the battering the 4th Amendment and privacy has taken under Bush and made worse under Obama.

      • Jim Bean


      • annboutelle

        BUSH did that!

      • strayaway

        I assume that “that” refers to my comment, “You forgot to mention the battering the 4th Amendment and privacy has taken under Bush and made worse under Obama.” Bush has already been included. I just pointed out that Obama has made things worse and out-Bushed Bush. It wasn’t just Bush who started this. It was every Congress member, including all but one Democratic Senator, who voted for the Patriot Act, every lying Obama administration official like Clapper and Lerner, and administrative tightening of the screws since Bush. Edward Snowden verified much of this.

      • MissTee

        You mean like how right wingers have gone mental over Obama using the same powers Bush II used? You mean those patriot act laws that right wingers supported and accused anyone who didn’t of being a pansy/traitor/terrorist?

        It’s all the same powers. We told you all you wouldn’t like those powers if a Democratic president had them. But Karl Rove and Sick Cheney had you all convinced you’d have a “permanent majority”. Suckers.

      • strayaway

        Give me one example of Bush making an executive order of the magnitude of handing out four million working papers to lawbreakers our law requires, for the most part, to be sent home? Presidents have no such powers. Why have you become an apologist for presidents who trample the Constitution? Shame on you.

        You mean the Patriot Act every Democratic Senator except Feingold voted for? You mean the Patriot Act Hillary and John Kerry voted for?

        Rove and Cheney spent millions of dollars opposing my candidates like Justin Amash in 2014. Hillary’s voting record is more consistent with the positions of Rove and Cheney with respect to foreign interventionism, 4th. Amendment and privacy abrogation, and the ascendent police state than that, for instance, the Pauls or Kucinich.

      • FredC1968

        Often our leaders will reach across party lines when it involves destroying our rights.

    • Kingkong

      Why bring race into #6? The author said “Bad guy” “Good guy” not black guy!!!

      • Nick Wride

        Because he’s a racist?

      • tony g


      • Charles Vincent

        According to the FBI violent crime statistics the majority of violet crime is committed by black people and in that sub set the majority is black on black. Just saying.

      • surfjac

        Yes and white on white crime is 84% using the same metric. In fact, all races have just about the same ratio.

      • Charles Vincent

        That’s irrelevant to the point I was making which was violent crime is primarily perpetrated by blacks and usually they are gang members. Therefore Jims statement wasn’t racist or making it about anything. Which was the claim made by the posters I was replying to.

      • surfjac

        The actual rates of black-on-white crime are lower than random chance would predict.
        No more than 0.7 percent (seven-tenths of one percent) of African Americans will commit a violent crime against a white person in a given year, and fewer than 0.3 (three-tenths of one percent) of whites will be victimized by a black person in a given year;
        Whites are 6 times as likely to be murdered by another white person as by a black person; and overall, the percentage of white Americans who will be murdered by a black offender in a given year is only 2/10,000ths of 1 percent (0.0002).

      • Charles Vincent

        Ignoratio elenchi (irrelevant conclusion, missing the point) – an argument that may in itself be valid, but does not address the issue in question.

      • FredC1968

        That makes sense. Since people tend to associate with people of the same race, most violent crime victims and perpetrators are of the same race.

      • Edward Bustamante

        In America our citizens are innocent until proven guilty, so we don’t label people as “bad guys” until AFTER “the shots are fired”..(crime is committed/trial is concluded).

    • markmac123

      Ummm, dumbass, I hate to break this to you but Muslims believe in”the creator” too.

      • Nick Wride

        Same creator. Their beginnings go back to the Old Testament.

    • markmac123

      9. Because the Yankee insignia isn’t a symbol of racism and a losing team like the Nazis and the South

    • Nick Wride

      #2- Every religion has a creator, Slick. Long before Judaism and the Old Testament, before the Jewish god of creation was invented by MEN, human beings worshipped gods. And in that worship, there was a creation mythology.

      • Jim Bean

        You’re point is you suspect that they might have been thinking of a pre-Judaism god?

      • Lestatdelc

        Not really. Taoism and Bhudism do not have “a creator” or god(s).

      • Charles Vincent

        That isn’t wholly true

    • Jonathan Evan Stern

      1) It lost because his suggestions were ridiculous and wouldn’t do what he claimed they would do. Although, a better way of asking the question is, “Why has the deficit become larger more quickly under Republican presidents than it has under Democratic ones?”

      2) Still not necessarily Christian. My creators were my parents. Humanity’s creator was evolution. The earth’s creator was gravity.

      3) Who are you talking about? All the independent agencies who looked into it?

      4) Fair enough of a point, but I still think that some common sense gun control measures should be put in place so that criminals, crazies, and irresponsible people don’t get their hands on these tools.

      5) Well, I would enjoy not having to sit through a prayer in order to talk about the giant pot hole in front of my house. I would enjoy being able to run for public office in every state even though I do not believe that any gods exist. Just to name the two.

      6) a: Why bring race into this?
      b: That’s kind of the point of the question. How can we make sure that the person pulling out the gun is a good guy who is being overly cautious or a bad guy who wants to rob everyone around him/her?

      7) Good, and you would be opposed to it because?

      8) I’d say that bailing out the auto industry with the provision that they update and employ more people would be one thing that Obama has done. Also, ending the tax cuts on the super-wealthy while keeping them for middle and lower class people, and adding government jobs through the stimulus plan helped quite a bit.

      9) Because one is a symbol of a baseball team with over payed players who win a lot of world series, which has nothing to do with what the Confederacy stood for. The other is a symbol of xenophobia, racism, genocide, militarism, nationalism, and forced labor, which has a lot in common with the Confederacy.

      10) a: Unless your plan is one that doesn’t cover getting sick, you still have that freedom.
      b: I’ll grant you, but since we’ve just about evened out as far as immigration goes; it seems like it’s pointless.
      c: So, now suggesting something healthy is taking away your freedom?

      • Charles Vincent

        You don’t know the difference between debt and deficit do you?

    • tony g

      Just a couple:

      2. Yeah, I mean who reads the Constitution?

      9. Yes, you could use that example, *also*.

    • Justin Reber

      Good job you sound just like a crazy republican blur the lines of what your talking points are to manipulate the conversation.

    • Lestatdelc

      Wow. Fundamentally wrong on almost every point. Well done.

      1) your dodge does not address in any way, why no Republican President since Ike was unable to balance their budgets and Reagan had the largest deficit as a percentage of GDP since the deficit spending employed to fight WWII.

      2) The founding of our country was the Constitution, not the Declaration. Prior to that, “we” were 13 independent countries after their declaration of independence from England.

      3) So you are calling the conclusions by the GOPs own investigations admit that the administration did nothing wrong?

      4) Number guns are up, the number of gun owners is way down. Just flaccid-penised gun nuts bought massive numbers of gun prompted by their paranoid “Obama’s going to tai away my guns” delusions doesn’t alter the fact that the number of PEOPLE who own guns has gone DOWN.

      5) Being able to officially pledged ones allegiance to ones own country without have to subjugate it some mythical sky-pixie would be a nice place to begin.

      6) Other than you missing the point that every gun owner is a “good guy with a gun” right up to when they are not, your attempted bit of sophistry does you no favors.

      7) So you disagree with the GOP strategy to lie about what net neutrality is, yes?

      8) There is plenty. From the stimulus having world, to the massive public expansion of the monetary supply through Quantitative Easing, the draining of the swamp through massive asset purchases because the depth and breadth of the Bush/Deregulation induced recession. Funny though that the GOP and conservatives want to blame Obama for bad economic numbers but refuse to give credit for positive economic news. Pretty neat little bit of hypocrisy your team has going.

      9) Because the New York Yankees never committed genocide or practiced slavery you dolt.

      10) You mean the freedom to pass your medical bills onto others because you refuse to carry actual insurance. Nothing is preventing your idiot GOP Congressmen in the House to pick up the already passed Senate bill and fix our immigration system. You and your kid are free to bring whatever food you want your kid eat for lunch at school.

      Yep, not a single thing (other than your response to #7) carries any validity.

    • MissTee

      So they just kinda forgot to put Jesus in the constitution?

  • kacky

    Number 10 is my favorite. But we won’t be having this discussion today because we’re all libs.

    • anthony

      Number 10 is freedoms lost. I am a 27 year old healthy male that now has to purchase health insurance or pay a “liberty tax.” I no longer have the freedom to just buy catastrophic insurance and now have to purchase insurance that Obama approves of or pay a tax. That is one freedom I have lost.

      • Michelle Wells

        And if you consider that a freedom lost, then next time you end up in the ER or Hospital, pay your own damn bill instead of skipping out on it!

  • Seth Kaplan

    As Jeff Goldblum says in “Jurassic Park” to the genetic engineers, “Just because you CAN do it doesn’t mean you SHOULD do it.”

    So, even on Thanksgiving, the most apolitical, enjoyable holiday we have, some people feel compelled to showcase their looniness via their Facebook invisibility. It’s a curious combination of educational weakness, over-the-top literalness, lack of a critical faculty, a disconnect between brain and mouth, and, of course, a large dollop of hate (in your choice of flavor).

    My suggestion? Every time you feel the urge to tee off on someone’s comment that riles you, take a deep breath, count to 10, and let the moment pass.

  • digitlburn

    @Frank…project much?

  • Jeff Clauser

    I could add many to this list… about: “how is letting gay couples get married forcing their beliefs down your throat?”

  • Jeff Clauser

    …..or maybe this one “how is denying the reality of climate change or evolutionary biology really a good thing for our nation and our children?”

  • markmac123

    #11. If sexuality is a choice, at which age did you decide to be straight.(Be sure to phrase it that way because you’re talking to conservatives and if they’re gay they don’t want anyone to know)

  • Jeff

    Stupid, irrelevant, straw man questions. Truly idiotic.

    • Nick Wride

      Truth hurt, Jeff?

  • susansrwc

    I consider myself a progressive liberal. My conservative uncles accused me of being a Commie. The one BIG beef I have with President Obama is that I think he has eroded our freedoms (#10) with the scope the government now has to delve into our personal lives on our phones (mobile or not), on line and elsewhere. I expected better of him in this area.

    Jim, “Creator” does NOT equate to Christian God. I am a Christian and believe in Jesus Christ as our Redeemer, but I do NOT believe that our Founding Fathers were, as a whole, Christians. I do believe they were creationists, i.e., they believed in a Supreme Being. I also believe that they did not intend that everyone here be bound by that belief.

    • Lestatdelc

      So pushing for better nutrition and dietary education and decisions in lunches tax payers fund is somehow eroding your “freedom”…?


  • Charles Vincent

    “If Republicans are so fiscally responsible, why was President Eisenhower (in the 1950′s) the last Republican president to balance the budget?”

    Presidents do not write or pass budgets congress does more specifically the house and senate budget committees and the CBO formulate the yearly budgets.

    “If our Founding Fathers wanted this nation to be based on Christianity, why don’t the words “Christian” or “Christianity” appear even once in our Constitution?”

    The founding fathers wanted us to be a faith based nation without an American version of the Church of England.

    “The United States has around 300-330 million guns (and that number’s growing) circulating within our neighborhoods, while gun violence continues to claim around 9,000 lives every year. How many guns will it take to decrease gun violence in America?”

    False premise Allen Violent crime and Incidents of violence involving firearms have been declining for a quarter of a century according to the FBI violent crime statistics. Additionally roughly 100 million Americans own firearms, making the average of 3 firearms per household and yet violent crimes are still going down.

    “Can you please describe the difference between a “bad guy with a gun” and a “good guy with a gun” – before shots are fired – if every single American is walking around openly carrying guns?”

    Yes. You will see the good guy with a gun and you will never see the bad guy with a gun.

    “How many millions of jobs need to be created, how high must stocks soar and how far does unemployment need to fall before you’ll admit President Obama has been a success economically?”

    When he balances the budgets and deficits and the debt are a thing of the past. Then when the Middle class jobs that were lost are being replaced with new middle income jobs, not part time minimum wage jobs which are the bulk of the jobs Obama has added.

    “What freedoms have you lost since Barack Obama became president?”

    Violations of the 4th and 5th amendments perpetrated by the NSA which has been grown under the Obama administration, the illegal use of Drone strikes to kill American citizens authorized by Obama himself Which violates the right of Due Process Guaranteed by the constitution to all Citizens.