EP 359 Can We Do Diversity Without Inflaming the Culture Wars?

Get ready to hear something that strays from convention in so many ways. There’s a reason that Irshad Manji was the recipient of Oprah Winfrey’s first Chutzpah Award for boldness. She guides us in how to do the right thing in the face of fear and to retain our principles in the face of contentious disagreements in a diverse society. Call it taking the high road or leaning in to a more respectful approach to differences. Yet given that in the United States, discord has hit red alert levels, we have to find constructive approaches to our diverse beliefs and attitudes to keep this noble experiment in self governance going. In her book, ‘Don’t Label Me’, she offers so many thought provoking ways to consider what moral indigence does to our debates to weaken the hand of those who espouse the benefits of diversity. For example, she says that some who oppose diversity are bigots but some are skeptical of it because of how the champions of it practice it. Or she encourages patience because many aren’t opposed to the change they see in society, but rather by the pace of it. Further, lowering yourself to labeling and name calling gives your opponent the moral authority to do it to others. As I indicate in the early part of our conversation, I am white, male, heterosexual and older, so by the labels we tend to apply you might draw an impression of me that is at total variance with the way I think. Want to avoid that danger? Irshad gives you practical approaches in how to avoid labeling and create dialogue. Her thinking is original and urgent. You must hear her and read the book.