What Is Intelligent Disagreement

Let me try to convince you that disagreements are worth it. Listening and understanding; question and disagree; to treat no proposition as holy and no objection as ungodly; Being voluntary, nurturing unpopular ideas, and cultivating habits with an open mind – that`s what my professors at the University of Chicago encouraged me to do. „In my experience, most people want to solve their own problems, and that`s the best way for them to grow professionally,“ says Jonathan Fries, vice president of engineering and digital transformation at Exadel. „If someone has a professional disagreement, start by listening. Remember that ventilation can be their way of saying they want leadership. Then ask questions and make sure you understand it. Asking questions like, „How do you think the situation could be resolved?“ is very effective. We disagree on racial issues, toilet policy, health laws and, of course, the 45th president. We express our disagreements in the discourse on radio and cable television in an increasingly virulent way; street and campus protests that are becoming increasingly violent; and personal conversations that are becoming more and more bitter.

An emotionally intelligent leader will usually not be the one who speaks first in a disagreement – not because he does not have a strong opinion, but because he enjoys listening first. Dr. Elliott B. Jaffa, a behavioral and management psychologist, says this is a key skill that brings high-QE leaders to disagreement. Emotionally intelligent leaders see conflict as opportunities. „Prejudice, dogmatism and stubbornness“ are the fuel for forging better ideas, says author Jonathan Rauch. „You don`t want people to walk into the room without feeling strongly convinced of things. All you want is for them to submit their views to other people for scrutiny.

Then you use the energy of their certainty, prejudices, and differences of opinion. Few people like to pretend to be a fanatic, so they keep their opinion to themselves even when talking to pollsters. That`s exactly what happened last year during the Brexit vote and the US presidential election, and look at where we are now. Intelligent disagreements are the lifeblood of any prosperous society. Yet in the United States, we are raising a younger generation that has never learned the how or why of disagreements, and who seems to think that free speech is a one-sided right: namely, their right to discharge, shout, or abuse anyone they don`t like so they don`t run the risk of listening to that person — or even allowing someone else to listen. The results are reflected in the deplorable state of our universities and the frayed edges of our democracies. Can we do better? This is a discussion about the media, and I would like to end this discussion with a word about the role that editors, and publishers in particular, can play in ways that could improve the state of public debate, rather than simply reflecting and accelerating its decline. I think there is something like private property in the public interest and fiduciary duties not only to shareholders, but also to citizens.

Journalism is not just any other activity, such as trucking or food service. Nations can have mediocre food and exemplary government, as Britain has shown for most of the last century. You can also have good food and an ugly government, as the France has always shown. But no country can have good government or a healthy public place without high-quality journalism – journalism that can distinguish a fact from a belief and still an opinion; who understands that the purpose of opinion is not to deviate from the facts, but to use them as a bridge to a broader idea called „truth“; and this believes that truth is a goal big enough that, like Manhattan, it can be achieved on many bridges with radically different conceptions. In other words, journalism based on facts while being rich in disagreements. I believe that it is still possible – and all the more necessary – for journalism to fulfil these functions, especially since the other institutions that should do so have been neglected. But it requires owners and publishers who understand that their role shouldn`t be to push a party line or be a slave to Google hits and Facebook ads, or to provide some type of pungent information entertainment, or to help a president or prime minister they prefer or who is struggling. Their task is to clarify the conditions of the debate by advocating aggressive and objective reports, and to improve the quality of the debate with comments that open the mind and challenge the assumptions, rather than simply confirming them. So here we are: intelligent disagreements are the elixir of life of any prosperous society.

Yet in the United States, we are raising a younger generation that has never learned the how or why of disagreements, and who seems to think that free speech is a one-sided right: namely, their right to discharge, shout, or abuse anyone they don`t like so they don`t run the risk of listening to that person — or even allowing someone else to listen. .