Caitlin Quattromani and Lauran Arledge Talk about Being Friends Despite Differing Political Views

The political climate in the U.S. can be incredibly divisive and bitter. In this enlightening Ted Talk Caitlin Quattromani and Lauran Arledge discuss the power of ‘dialogue’ over ‘debate’. This is a great conversation that this country needs to hear at this time in our history.

LA: And so to most of us,political conversations are a zero-sum game.There’s a winner and there’s a loser.We go for the attack and we spot a weakness in someone’s argument.And here’s the important part:we tend to take every comment or opinion that’s expressedas a personal affront to our own values and beliefs.But what if changed the way we think about these conversations?What if, in these heated moments,we chose dialogue over debate?When we engage in dialogue, we flip the script.We replace our ego and our desire to winwith curiosity, empathyand a desire to learn.Instead of coming from a place of judgment,we are genuinely interested in the other person’s experiences,their values and their concerns.

 

CQ: You make it sound so simple, Lauran.But getting to that place of true dialogue is hard,especially when we’re talking about politics.It is so easy to get emotionally fired upabout issues that we’re passionate about,and we can let our ego get in the way of truly hearingthe other person’s perspective.And in this crazy political climate we’re in right now,unfortunately, we’re seeing an extreme resultof those heated political conversations,to the point where people are willing to walk away from their relationships.In fact, Rasmussen released a poll earlier this yearthat said 40 percent of people reported that the 2016 electionnegatively impacted a personal relationship,and the Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience tells usthat people tend to feel their way to their beliefsrather than using reasoning,and that when reason and emotion collide,it’s emotion that invariably wins.So no wonder it’s hard to talk about these issues.