It's called context. It's not always directly correlated to the present moment. Our identities are especially contextual. We each carry a lot of unseeable baggage (not the best word I know) such as our history, heritage, ethnic background, age, gender, sexuality, etc. Who you are in a conversation matters and is always relevant. It's not a stretch by any means at all.
It's easier and more comfortable to not "go there".
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