Liberals and conservatives have one thing in common: zero interest in learning how and what those they disagree with actually think. Click. Talking past each other is deeply unhealthy for our entire political system. A functioning democracy requires that citizens make informed choices — which voters can’t do if their information sources are ideologically monochromatic. … Continue reading Social Media Is Hurting Democracy
Conservative voters feel assaulted by "moral Bolshevism," a belief that the liberal vision is the only right one. https://t.co/XUFaRSE12k SABRINA TAVERNISE in the NYT asks if liberals are helping Trump by expressing such intolerance for conservative beliefs, and pushing people who aren't comfortable with many of Trump's actions into his camp. She reports on interviews with … Continue reading Are Liberals Helping Trump?
Everybody is a hypocrite to some extent. Pointing out others' hypocrisy while not recognizing your own is in fact quite hypocritical. In online debates, I often see examples of "the pot calling the kettle black." Masha Gessen had a good reflection on hypocrisy in the NYT. Trump "made his first public concession to political expectations...to norms, … Continue reading In Praise of Hypocrisy
With the rising climate of contempt in America, bridge-building and reconciliation activities, "to repair the social fabric, to restore trust and civility" will be necessary. This was clear before the end of the 2016 election, because it was easy to predict that at least 40 percent of the electorate would have felt "despondent, disgusted, betrayed" … Continue reading Americans Must Learn to Argue Better, Serve Together
Contempt for others has become mainstream in America. Contempt is a bipartisan problem, and contempt begats contempt. Doesn't matter "who started it," as our parents used to say. We have to come to some understandings. Face to face interactions over meals with people who have a different political perspective should be a goal of people concerned … Continue reading ‘Our New Age of Contempt’
One of my Facebook friends, John, has a habit of pointing to the weakest and most extreme arguments of those he disagrees with, as if they are somehow representative of all political opponents, that most are somehow irrational. One can easily do that to him as well. It makes for perhaps a good game of … Continue reading Smug Tribal Oneupsmanship Rather Than Respectful Exchange of Rational Differences
I have a Facebook friend, John, who repeatedly posts provocative or hyper-partisan statements that seem designed to get reactions, but generate more heat than light. It's a far cry from discussing politics with your neighbor who has a completely different perspective but who you listen to respectfully and are always looking to find his good … Continue reading Provoking Online Reaction, But Not Open-minded Dialogue