The vast majority of the time, cries of racist, sexist, ableist and ageist and on and on are the Politically Correct accusations hurled at individuals and groups. The intention is to completely remove these accused entities from being allowed to have any legitimate part in the public discourse. To cancel them as the new terminology goes. And to do all of this without a legitimate set of facts, or anything that looks like a logical train of thought.
At Revolution 2.0™ the point is not to out-insult and out-shout the ist-yellers; the point is to use verbal judo when engaged in these conversations, or when talking or writing about this type of dialog. Judo, the “gentle art” uses the opponent’s’ size and strength against them. In judo, we watch the other person, get a feel for what they are doing and what they might do next. When they move against us, we use their momentum against them to “gently” move them to the floor. At Revolution 2.0, we do something very similar. We listen to what the other person is saying and decide how to use their enthusiasm, their initial thinking and reasoning, to move them to where we want them–to where we believe they need to be.
Unlike judo, we do not intend to defeat anyone; we lead. We do not react and reply in kind; we lead.
That is the subject of today’s 10-minute episode.
Let’s look at some of the things that can very quickly escalate–requiring us to use our verbal judo skills, in these cases leading to long and loud accusations of racism:
- Pointing out that 70% of blacks youths grow up in fatherless homes. That stat is often cited as a useful way of seeking a solution to the array of negative issues facing children of all races in homes without a dad.
- Saying that the disproportionate number of blacks in prison is not due to racial bias in the judicial system; it is due to the disproportionate number of blacks committing crimes.
- Arguing that despite its many flaws, including slavery, that the US is inherently an exceptional and good country.
- Defending people as diverse as Christopher Columbus, George Washington, Martin Luther King and Robrt E. Lee as heroes despite their many flaws.
- Saying that you are not a racist. To a growing number of people, that is proof that you are a racist.
And some similar examples with sexism:
- Not “Believing all women.” No matter what they say. Try defending yourself by saying that you take everyone’s initial statements and claims at face value, regardless of gender, until proven false–and count the milliseconds until you suddenly become a sexist.
- Point out that trans women are biologically men, and have a built-in, unfair advantage competing in most sports with biological women. You can even point out, correctly, that this is unfair to women.
- Say that men and women are different.
- Claim that you are not a sexist.
Let’s add two from the “phobe” category; xenophobe and homophobe:
- If you want to know if you are a xenophobe, announce that you support having secure national borders. Even if you follow that with a statement that once the borders are secure, you would support things like DACA and a path to citizenship for those who are here illegally. Supporting secure national borders is prima facie proof that you are a xenophobe. And you probably want to put kids into cages.
- Claim, if it is true for you, that your have many and good friends who are immigrants from south of the border. “Ha! Guilty! That’s what all xenophobes say!”
- Here’s a reliable test for homophobia. Announce that you believe that no one can be compelled to use their artistic talents, an extension of protected first amendment rights, to do anything they simply do not wish to do.
- Claim, once again if true for you, that you have good friends with seual orientations far different from yours. (See previous)
These above examples are all born in an already deep and growing embarrassment and dislike for America, and who we are as Americans. And many of us want to punish ourselves and the nation for being successful. Kind of a national masochism.
Let’s hear from Thomas Sowell, an American economist and social theorist who is currently a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, “Too many people today act as if no one can honestly disagree with them. If you have a difference of opinion with them, you are considered to be not merely in error, but in sin. You are a racist, a homophobe or whatever the villain of the day happens to be.”
When confronted with these kind of judgments, we must remain calm and focused. Listen. Guide. Coach. Like diet and exercise, this process takes time. There is a new study that says only about 40% of Americans know who their congressperson is. And I believe it. Start with where they are and what they know, not where you are. Gently (remember, a key judo concept) bring them, with genuine regard for who they are and how they think, to where you are. And to do that, you will need to have patience, real knowledge of the subject at hand, and want to have them see the truth as you see it. Oh, and to do this, you will need to get away from the people you know who already agree with you, an go mix it up with a lot of different people. Said differently, get out there and make a difference. Preaching to the converted is easy and comforting, but not useful.
And be open to learning from the people with whom you initially disagree. For my part, I know that I have more to learn that I know now. And I always will.
“It is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.” -Chinese proverb. Let us light our candles in the cursed darkness of today’s politics and political correctness.
As we get ready to wrap up, please do respond in the episodes with comments or questions about this episode or anything that comes to mind, or connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. And you can subscribe on your favorite device through Apple Podcasts, Google, or Stitcher.
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Will Luden, coming to you from 7,200’ in Colorado Springs.