How To Argue A Point Properly

How To Argue A Point Properly Public


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When two people share the same goals, they can disagree – even strongly disagree – and still have a productive discussion about how to reach those shared objectives. As comedian and author Owen Benjamin explains, the problem with America today is we no longer share the same goals, and that’s tearing us apart.
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Do you and I share same goals?

If we do, we can disagree—even strongly disagree, and still have a productive discussion. We might even reach a compromise.

But if we don’t share the same goals? Then what?

Then, rhetorically speaking, we’re at war. And only one side can win.

Let me explain.

My parents and brother lean more to the liberal side of the political spectrum than I do. We argue. We slightly nudge each other. We change opinions a little bit. And then we go back to Scrabble.

They were very upset when President Trump withdrew from the Paris climate accords. I was happy. We argued about it, but it was all good because we share the same goals.

We all want clean air and water for our children. We all want to develop clean energy; we want America’s economy to prosper; we want to be less reliant on fossil fuels.

I thought the accords were a bad deal for America. The best way to lower carbon emissions, in my opinion, is to let the free market and American ingenuity loose on the problem. They, in contrast, think the government needs to step in, fund the research, and keep the corporations in line.

Doesn't matter, because we have the same goal: a healthy planet.

We also disagree on gun control. My brother is a little more with me, but my dad wants a lot more regulation because he wants fewer school shootings. So do I. So does my brother. But I believe if a potential killer knew he’d encounter teachers and administrators well-trained in the use of weapons, we’d have less shootings. Different solutions. Shared goal.

I’ve always thought that this is how America is supposed to work. Liberals and conservatives respectfully arguing over the best solution to a shared goal.

But now there’s a third party in the game: the left. And they’re changing the rules.

When I was growing up, the left was on the fringe. But now they’ve moved into the mainstream. They’ve pretty much taken over our educational system. They’re in the media. In corporate HR departments. And, more and more, sad to say, in the Democratic Party.

The left doesn’t share the same goals that liberals and conservatives do. They have a whole different set of goals.

Let me give you some examples.

Raising kids without a gender identity or encouraging them to question their sexual identity. This, to me, is a form of child abuse. I don’t care who’s doing it—parents, teachers, doctors. Their goal is not my goal.

Here’s another one: Demonizing white people and males for the world's problems is not part of my value system. There is no shared goal in that.

I believe in merit and character over race. But now it's cool to say that white males have done all the bad things in the world.

I have two little boys. I get angry just thinking about people telling them they're responsible for racism and sexism—beautiful little children who just dance in the kitchen and smile. So that's not a shared goal.

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