Thursday, July 28, 2016

Why Conservatives Can’t Understand Liberals (and Vice Versa)

I saw this TED talk a few years ago and was struck with the methodical statistical approach; truly scientific. I thought, when I saw it today, that I'd commented on it in one of my blogs, but have yet to find it. 

The accomplished Jonathan Haidt's presentation has a bit of that cloying feeling I get when the presentation starts with a viewpoint claiming moral superiority when most TED attendees revel in their self ordained ability to see deeper than the "others who are narrow minded".   It seems a little narrow and stereotypical, but if I put it in the context of American pride and ethnocentricity, it is bound by those limitations. Symbolism readily falls on the recognizable image of George Bush.  To understand the stereotypes driving the left and right conflicts in a meaningful way requires a great deal of patience; something in short supply when covertly hostile jabs define rigid lines regularly. None of us falls 100% into one view or another.  Structure for a nation's integrity has different needs for stability than whatever flexibility is exercised within those borders.  Groups share tribal wisdom in their allegiances.

It is because of our internal conflicts as a nation that we are so creative and dynamic as a nation. Friction generates energy.  The constitution allows us to speak our minds, however controversial.  We all make the yin and yang.  We just find the flexibility to embrace our differences and realize it can all work and have faith that it will.  Yay TED!