During my thought process leading to my defection from the Democratic Party and into the warm embrace of the Republican camp, it was and still is important for me to analyze what it was like being a Democrat and associating in their circles.
Democrats that I have met often have these contrived conversations. As there are many, many Democrats who do not necessarily share the same values, unlike most Republicans, everybody goes into a conversation thinking how not to offend the other party's sensitivitiy to some cause they hold in high esteem.
I can think of hundreds of instances where I was in a room full of Democrats where I literally cannot think of one conversation that was relaxed and congenial. They almost all come with a tension because they tend to not accept you for who you are. They fear you might hog up all their time, and they spend most of their time looking over your shoulder to speak to the real big players.
Their politics gets in the way of their genuineness. I imagine it is easier to read sanskrit that to understand how they feel inside about anything.
So the conversations are often forced and contrived. One leaves these gathering with this tremendous sense of relief because they did not say something to someone outside of the governing orthodoxy.
Democrats, because they control all the civic and local organizations, populate them with their buddies and political allies, so it's no better there. You just know going into it that everyone you meet, barring 2 elected officials or appointees that come to my mind, has no time or use for you because you are in the minority of thought. So a kind of herd mentality takes over for them.
One reason why I said so long to the Democrats is because it always felt like I was being frog-marched rather than accepted as an equal or even a person who they might want to get to know. They have been in power so long, and have their hands on so many levers, all the oxygen gets sucked out of the room in their presence.
More on that later.