I found myself in a church classroom today. How and why I got there is unimportant to this story. The important thing is that I was sitting there in a little kid’s plastic chair, and I looked over at the various propaganda posted on the wall for the children to read, stumbling on the following: Continue reading
Beyond Rational: How To Discuss Contentious Topics and Keep Your Cool
In “civilized” society, we know that one of the cardinal rules is that there are certain topics one just simply does not bring up: politics, religion, money, and sex. The problem, of course, is that without these subjects most dinner parties devolve into inane conversations about the weather, and online communities such as Newsvine would not even exist. Being a lifelong veteran of the art of asking questions which bring dinner parties to a sudden and ominous silence, and yet rather partial to discussions which go somewhere other than “taking it outside”, I thought it might be of value to share some of the insights and techniques I have acquired over the years in the hopes that we can all get a little farther in discussing topics which are actually topics (as opposed to the weather, which I assure you really isn’t).