In this political age, it is hard to imagine a time where Republicans and Democrats ever got along. One’s political views have caused them to lose friendships and even stop speaking to family members.
A new Pew Research study shows that almost half of liberal Democrats — 47 percent — say that if a friend supported Trump, it would actually put a strain on their friendship.
Among Democrats and Democratic-leaning voters more broadly, the number is 35 percent. White and more-educated Democrats are more likely to feel that it's tough to even be friends with a Trump supporter. Just 13 percent of Republicans say a friend's support of Hillary Clinton would strain their relationship.
Monday evening, Nikki Haley, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, gave a speech to Turning Point USA’s High School Leadership Summit.
Turning Point USA is an American conservative, right-wing nonprofit organization whose stated mission is "to educate students about true free market values."
In her speech Haley stated: “Raise your hand if you’ve ever posted anything online to ‘own the libs.’” A reported large number of hands rose in the air along with cheering.
She continued: "I know that it’s fun and that it can feel good, but step back and think about what you’re accomplishing when you do this — are you persuading anyone? Who are you persuading? We’ve all been guilty of it at some point or another, but this kind of speech isn’t leadership — it’s the exact opposite. Real leadership is about persuasion, it’s about movement, it’s bringing people around to your point of view. Not by shouting them down, but by showing them how it is in their best interest to see things the way you do."
This is essential to hear in this political age. While many feel a sense of accomplishment when they “own the libs,” it is more crucial to have intellectual conversations with those who disagree with us. Convincing people is the business of conservatism.
In the Trump age, conservatives seem to be very much on one side of the aisle, and liberals are far on the other. We shouldn’t just respond to messages that fire up the one side or the other. We should seek to speak truth lovingly and winsomely!
If real leadership is about persuasion, and bringing people around to your point of view, then attempt to do so with compassion and love, even if it seems difficult at times.