about those difficult conversations

There is a certain fetish among a segment of our population for the notion that if only there were a way to openly dialogue about difficult subjects where there is disagreement and differences, people would see the light and come to see things in harmony.

Nicholas Kristof is an exemplar of why this is a fantasy. For too many of the conversational fetishists the light is predetermined to be their own conclusion on the matter, meaning they aren’t thinking of a conversation between two reasonable beings, they’re imagining a lecture from one point of view, with the demand of submissive agreement from those who might deign to state disagreement before being enlightened. It’s a disheartening dynamic.

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