Despite his rather abrasive way of speaking, I think Jonathan Pie makes several important points in his video here.
To address these issues, he breaks them down into 3 parts: Clinton as a terrible candidate, a lack of peaceful communication between the two camps, and the role of the Left in demonising people with a different view.
Clinton as a Terrible Candidate
I am unable to say much about Clinton being a terrible candidate – I’m not a big fan of hers and obviously, I’d much rather vote for her over Trump. But that’s over now and there’s nothing we can do about it.
The Role of Listening
However, there’s the attitude that we have towards each other – now that requires some changing. Pie points out that by hurling labels at each other, we shut down any important discussion as people on both sides get hurt and stop listening to each other.
Listening is a key skill that many people on both sides have yet to learn.
By not listening to each other, we get pushed deeper and deeper into our own worlds, constructing an echo chamber where we hear what we want to hear and narrow our minds.
This is perfect for people who use fearmongering techniques – by becoming self-centred, overly-critical and narrow-minded, we don’t see the whole picture and so people like Donald Trump, who promise radical change in exchange for people’s rights and liberties, get elected. Our values that we fought so hard for go up in flames.
Try listening: I mean really listening. Trying to understand the other side’s position. What worries do they have? What are their priorities?
Keep your critical but polite head on, and don’t interrupt them. If you see a flaw in their reasoning, ask them calmly to explain more about it. If they have been misinformed, check up their fact with them. If you’re right, there’s nothing more infuriating than a smug ‘I told you so‘ – NEVER SAY THIS. It achieves nothing except resentment.
But above all, don’t call them names. Labelling Trump/Brexit/whatever supporters as ‘racist’ or ‘stupid’ or ‘deluded’ or ‘sexist’, as I myself have done, has never solved anything. In fact, it makes people more afraid to talk about what they actually think, so they won’t engage in a healthy debate with someone of an opposing view.
This is the most valid point I think he made in his video, and it has definitely got me to rethink why people voted for Trump and the nature of our ‘politically correct’ society.
Once we can get over throwing labels at each other and we’ve learnt to listen, we can then have some rational debates. It can be difficult to remain calm about something like politics, where everyone has their own personal stakes.
Despite how tempting it can be to raise your voice or lecture someone, the winner is usually the person who remains calm. Listen. Learn. Stay curious.
Has the video made you rethink the way you act? What are your thoughts on the motives of people who voted for Trump? Engage (respectfully) in the debate below!