Temple of the Jedi Force : How to approach someone with a potentially harmful attitude towards groups of "others" [Message Boards - General Discussions]
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How to approach someone with a potentially harmful attitude towards groups of "others"
Knight
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2014/4/24 2:03
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Anyone who knows me knows I've done my fair share of arguing with strangers online. Heck, it was one of my favorite hobbies for a few years. You see things being done that are hurtful, potentially even dangerous, and you want to be a voice to oppose the messages of hate and fear that others put forth out there. Over the years I've learned to argue less, and communicate more. There's always another side, and people rarely believe and preach harmful things
because "they're evil". That's not what it's all about, and when we treat each other as enemies, then enemies is what we'll become. I found the passage under in an article, but unfortunately I managed to lose the article in question. It pertained to transpeople and how to communicate for others to see their plight. But it's valid for pretty much any kind of public discussion concerning rights, freedom and care for our fellow man.

"There were a few messages in particular that really seemed to change the attitude of those initially opposed to transgender public accommodations protections:

•Making the point that laws preventing discrimination against LGBTQ people are already on the books in nearby locations
•Countering safety fears about transgender people using public restrooms based on their gender identity
•Appealing to the common belief in fairness and the Golden Rule
•Invoking empathy
•Building on logistical experience

This work suggests that communication is key. Often times, folks opposing nondiscrimination legislation haven’t fully thought through the issue. It’s also helpful to humanize LGBTQ individuals."

Whatever the matter at hand is; compassion comes first. We can't plant healthy and positive seeds without it. The other person must feel seen, heard and cared for. If we fail at that, we fail at helping them see and hear others. They'll just shut down and shut us out. When we can approach someone who is coming at something from a different angle, and have dialogue (over monologue or argument) with them based on empathy, logic and mutual compassion, then we have the chance at together coming to a sound and acceptable viewpoint that would serve everyone involved. Hell, even if that other party brings anything BUT his empathy and logic; it doesn't matter! We have the power to steer any conversation, it takes two to dance the tango of making a dialogue into an argument. And compassion is an oddly disarming feature, that tends to work pretty well. And in the cases where that doesn't work, you're likely dealing with either an empathically inept person (not always their fault, genes and upbringing can stump a person) and then cold logic might do the trick.

Some don't automatically see, as we do, the interconnectedness and the personal responsibilities that comes with it. Some hold dearly to their values, but fail to see how the golden rules of their community applies also to what strikes them as "different" or "otherly". And that's how it is for all of us, even the most open-minded person can fall pray to that, myself included!

If nothing works, and you can't seem to get a meaningful dialogue out of it; consider that this other person is a troll, who's not really approaching this with the seriousness and candor that you are. And then just let it go! Anything else is a waste of calories and energy better spent elsewhere.


Posted on: 6/14 18:13
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Re: How to approach someone with a potentially harmful attitude towards groups of "others"
Knight
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Thank you for sharing your thoughts!
My experience is that people who are extremely againts the LGBTQ and gender theory thing are mostly driven by fear, the fear of change, of something which is either unknown or has no control over. Their usual arguements are all about the death of old traditions, death of families and eventually, death of humanity. All lacks objectivity, even if these people think they are objective about the stuff, it's clearly emotion and instinct driven, and it's quite useful and effective for the arguement when we point out to that.
I'm also a part of the LBGTQ community (Q) and I often feel a desire of heated debates as well, which are actually quite enjoyabe when indeed, communication happens. Agreement is not even important when the two half respect each others' views. So good arguements are fine but when it goes into targetting the person instead of the arguement, I usually warn the person, then stop the debate. If other logical fallacies occur, I point out to them.
Compassion is to understand the mechanism, how society and brains of people like that work as there clearly are blocks which needs to be broken down. We should observe these and stay out of getting emotionally involved, as much as possible. The question is, for sure, if the person is willing to cooperate or not, but sometimes time also solves this case.

Posted on: 6/16 23:47
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