Are you dreading that family Thanksgiving dinner because politics is most likely going to come up at the table? How to handle politics at Thanksgiving isn't easy but we've all got to do it. We've got your back with this Thanksgiving survival guide. 

With a federal election only a week after Thanksgiving Day, politics is bound to come up at family functions across the country. 

Political debate isn't a bad thing and it can sometimes be fun to spar back and forth with someone as long as it stays civil. But if your family member like that one racist uncle starts going off at the dinner table about politics it can get a little touch and go. 

"There’s often that one relative who always has to be right or a relative who is insufferable, won’t listen and wants to pontificate," Melanee Thomas, associate professor of political science at the University of Calgary, told Global News

So if you're bracing for an awkward family dinner this Thanksgiving with hot topic debates on politics we've got some tips to survive the conversation. 

A good thing to do is be curious, not accusatory. Nothing sparks an argument faster than defensiveness. So if you immediately go after someone when they say something you disagree with the conversation can disintegrate quickly and turn it into a heated argument across the dinner table. 

"Present evidence and try to have a dispassionate conversation," said Thomas. "Ask people to explain why they feel a certain way to get them into a position where they consider they might not actually be correct."

Sometimes your best bet is to just not take things personally. If your grandma doesn't agree with you on climate change try not to think of it as a personal attack. And if your uncle has the complete opposite views you do when it comes to political parties just let it be. 

Unfortunately this can be hard to do especially if your family member is going after your values or how you identify. 

For the sake of not causing a rift in the family or appeasing your mom who doesn't want there to be a fight, you might just have to bite your tongue. 

But if none of those seem to work for you, actual physical distance does wonders. Learning to walk away from someone who is bound to turn conversations into arguments could be the key preserving your sanity on Thanksgiving. 

If the weather is nice where you're at, take refuge in the backyard. Or escape to another room where you can ignore all the talk.

Even the Liberals are trying to help out with the political debates at Thanksgiving dinner. The party is urging Canadians to have "Turkey Talks" this year about the election. Though the talking points are just ways to defend Justin Trudeau to your family members. 

Holidays that bring everyone around the dinner table can be hard to navigate but we believe in you! Stay strong out there. 


There are stories everywhere. If you spot a newsworthy event in your city, send us a message, photo, or video @NarcityCanada on Twitter and Instagram.


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