So I was listening to a discussion on bloomberg.com about Mayor DeBlasio's plan to shut Rikers Prison.
You all know I come from the right. As you can imagine, Mayor DiBlasio does not get high ratings in my circles. But in this case, I agree with him.
It took me a minute to notice it, but my gut reaction is to dismiss anything out of his mouth or office as a symptom of the sickness of the left. And I do the same with a lot of the mouthpieces of the left. And then I asked myself does this attitude really add anything to the marketplace of ideas?
Yes, I think some people are wrong—especially in their methods—most of the time. But I also believe, at least at some level, that most politicians really do—or at least one time did—have a commitment to create a better world.
And I also know that the best negotiators rarely say no. If you want to keep the conversation going, you are much better with a “Yes, but…”
And when we are talking politics, or bandying about ideas in this marketplace, it seems to me we should always look at what we have in common first.
“I absolutely agree that we should all be able share our ideas, but does that mean I have to agree?…”
“Yes, I also care for every human life, and I agree that people use guns to kill other people, but maybe the constitution guarantees our right for a greater purpose.…”
“I agree that people should have access to health care, but maybe this is an issue best left to the states.…”
“We both want to educate and prepare our kids for the future. Let's take a look at what really has been working.…”
So my invitation to you this holiday is to exercise your independence. Open your mouth. Share what you think. But first, listen. Listen for what you have in common. It's often easy to see our differences. But we've got a lot in common too. And maybe we can learn something that will help carry us all forward, together.
Let's celebrate our Freedoms by using them. Let's talk.