We are all fully aware of just how obnoxious leftists can be. They are often so fully entrenched on their “moral high ground” they cannot be rationally engaged. However, these individuals and their viewpoints are a harsh reality of the world around us, and if there is any hope of restoring liberty to this country, getting them to get over themselves and to see the error of their ways is essential, lest we accept the principles this nation was founded on are forgotten forever.
But just like anyone with strongly held beliefs, most leftists won’t respond easily to their flaws being exposed. One must approach with caution and use superior tactics to be able to steer the discussion towards something far more relevant and far more important than the issues about which leftists usually preach. Here are some strategies for engaging those from the Left, but know they are tactics that must be worked on over time. Dealing with leftists and trying to promote intelligent debate cansometimes feel like slamming your head against a brick wall, but if you are patient and diligent, you might be able to break down the walls put up by years of media conditioning and reach the core of the issue. A small step forward, sure, but progress must start somewhere.
Keep the Focus on the Issues
One of the great failures of the current two-party system is the narrow scope of debate. In the U.S., we have freedom of speech, but really only across a limited spectrum of thought. This is why we see so little progress in Washington; we have essentially been regurgitating the same failed practices over and over, and our only solution is to keep doing this under the guise of change.
So while the recommendation here is to “keep the focus on the issues,” perhaps it’s better to think of this as “shifting the focus to the real issues.” For example, leftists will defend unflinchingly unsustainable social programs and enormous government spending because they feel their moral superiority grants them cause to do so. Engaging in debates like this is trivial and fruitless. You won’t change and neither will they, so instead of steeping to this level, why not try broadening the debate? For example, instead of talking about whether or not we should have these massive programs, why not talk about the way the government funds itself? Any debate about reigning in the deficit and trying to improve the standard of living in America is incomplete without mentioning the Fed and its monopoly over the money supply.
While leftists might consider this tactic a distraction, it is your job to make it clear how it is not. How can we ever expect to meet financial requirements past, present and future when there is a blood sucking institution at the heart of a massive government specifically designed to devalue our currency and make us poorer? It’s the ultimate uphill battle, especially since the general public, both Left and Right, has very little idea exactly what the Fed is and how it works, but it’s a battle that must be fought. By shifting the debate towards something like this, you can help steer conversations with leftists away from the pointless and petty bickering so common in most debates today. From there, there might be a chance to have some genuine debate about what’s going on in this country.
Ask Thoughtful Questions
Aristotle once said, “Wise men speak when they have something to say, fools speak because they have to say something.” When dealing with leftists, it is critical to stay in the category of the “wise.” One of the biggest challenges in interacting with these individuals is that they have been taught (or conditioned) to think they are always right. There is this underlying assumption of universalism in the way liberals think that makes it very difficult to have real debates—they assume they know some ultimate truth and that that have to share it.
Likely the best way to work against this smug approach to debate is to ask questions. Leftists almost automatically think they are better than you, so it’s important to not feed into this. But you can use it to your advantage by asking pointed, thoughtful questions exposing the flawed logic they are using. For example, leftists love to think taxing the wealthy will solve most problems; their thinking being: it will help reduce the deficit, cover social spending and help stimulate the economy through even further government expansion.
Attacking this logic will get you nowhere; it is deeply engrained in their psyche. But thoughtful questions (that you may or may not already know the answer to) can help shed light on ideas to which leftist conditioning usual leaves people blind. You could ask, for example, if they are aware the national debt currently represents over 2,000 percent of federal revenues. If you could bring this information into the debate in a way that makes leftists think they are making their own conclusions, you might be able to engage in a thoughtful discussion. They would realize no tax policy could even come close to overcoming this deficit, and they might be more open to different solutions. Or not; after all, we’re talking about leftists, but the point is to try and move beyond the petty bickering and into substantial debate. With thoughtful questioning driving to the core of the issues, you might be able to do this in a way that gets this country having genuine discussions about what is really important.
The last thing to remember when trying to respond to disruptive liberals is not to hide. If you see a fierce debate on Facebook or some other online forum, don’t be afraid to jump in, and don’t use fake accounts. Be a real person who is proud of what they believe in and not someone who is out just taking cheap shots. Doing this will expose you, though, and since we know the Deep State is always keen on finding and removing dissent, take the necessary steps to protect yourself online. If you hide who you are, though, you are just giving leftists more reasons to discredit you without listening to your point of view.
The same applies in any debate arena. If you focus on the issues and use thoughtful questioning, you might be able to break through the wall of ignorance behind which most leftists live. However, it is important to remember the phrase “pick your battles.” There will be times when you encounter someone who simply cannot get beyond their own closed view. If this happens, they will likely use many more personal attacks, calling you uneducated or unaware. When this happens, it is much better to take the moral high ground. It may be painful to walk away, but engaging in this type of destructive behavior will only hurt the cause of reason moving forward.
So while disruptions from leftists will never go away, having the right rhetorical and logical strategy can help move the discussion towards the real issues. Hopefully this approach works, for it may be our only hope of preserving liberty in a time when it seems under constant attack.
How do you counter disruptions from leftists? Do you engage or simply walk away? What works and what doesn’t? Let us know so we can all try to produce more productive debates.
About the Author: Sandra is a writer who focuses most of her attention on protecting personal liberty. She grew up in a staunchly liberal household, but never really agreed with the views of her parents. Her time traveling and studying has clued her in to some of the foundations of liberty, and now she dedicates herself to protecting and promoting what little freedom we still have left.