I remember the first time I dealt with a member of the Manhattan liberal elite. I was ten years old and had accompanied my mom to a salon on Madison Avenue in Midtown.
An older woman sitting under a hair dryer beside me had interrupted my studying to roll her eyes and laugh at an image of President Reagan on the paper I was holding. “Stupid man,” she had said. “And so common.” Mom had given her quite a lecture before we left.
Then there was my second encounter a year or so later. While in a dressing room on the Upper East Side, mom and I overheard a saleswoman talking about a “Republican out-of-towner” who had entered the store wearing a mismatched ensemble, including a “dreadful American flag sweater.” We never returned to that store again.
The truth is that I’ve been surrounded by the liberal elite my whole life. Although I resided in Staten Island until I entered grad school at Columbia University at the age of twenty-one, I had always spent at least two days a week in “the city” during middle school, high school, and college. I guess you could say that studying at Columbia, teaching at a private school on the Upper East Side, and living and working in Manhattan for many years solidified my experience with snooty leftists.
As a result, I’ve decided to offer some suggestions as to how to deal with them. Satisfaction guaranteed.
- Smile. Always remember to smile when refuting an argument. It makes them go completely bananas. Smiling conveys two things that liberal elitists are very uncomfortable with: happiness and confidence.
- Stick to the issues. Never resort to personal attacks. They will – and your refusal to take part will make them unhinged. What should you do? You got it: smile, refute, smile, refute, and smile some more. Kill them with kindness. (Relax lefties, it’s an expression.)
- Be real. Left-wing elitists revere pomposity, arrogance, and highbrow rhetoric. However, they fear humility, authenticity, and practical smarts. Those things disarm them and leave them reaching for baseless attacks. Don’t forget to keep smiling.
- Crack them up. Tell a joke that really, really makes them want to laugh. They will become angry at you for being funny, then angry at themselves for – heaven forbid – laughing with the enemy. The contortions of their faces alone are well worth it.
- Break the stereotype. Lefty elitists take pride in defining you as the caricature they’ve been taught you are. Prove them wrong and stand up for individuality in the process. Revealing that you’re an animal lover, that you adore clean air, or that you went to a snobby left-wing university will leave them bewildered.
And, most importantly …
- Defend their right to disagree with you. The collectivist mind has been trained to see opposing viewpoints as deadly. By defending their right to disagree, you are doing something they never could. The more you stress that their differing opinions don’t bother you, the more discombobulated they’ll become. Why? Because you will represent the true herald of diversity they falsely claim to be.
So, the next time you visit San Francisco, Manhattan, or anywhere in the People’s Republic of Massachusetts, have some fun. Oh, and don’t forget – all overt signs of patriotism will be viewed as excessive and ostentatious.
American flag sweatsuit? Perfect.