Anyone who follows my articles, blogs, newsletters, podcasts, & videos knows my Progressive credentials are unquestioned. But I also believe we must engage every Conservative and others continuously.
My conversation with a Conservative doing good work
Brian L. Carr is the Chief Advancement Officer of Northwest Assistance Ministries. We discussed his organization giving a hand up to those in need in our vast Houston Metropolitan area. We also got into some politics. We will likely have more conversations that dive a lot deeper, but I did not want to take away from the purpose of his visit, which was to highlight the deeds of his organization.
Brian Carr is very Conservative, and I am very progressive. Yet we had so much in common. He is an executive in an organization that does excellent work in a manner so many of his political ideologues would wince at as they have consistently.
I wanted to air our genuine conversation with the expectation that it would be a catalyst for those always at each other’s throats to pause and be human. I enjoyed our conversation pre, during, and post the program.
“We do not ask anybody’s party affiliation when people come for help,” Brian told me. “We just want to help people.”
Brian told me a gun story that gained my respect. He said his organization wanted to sign on to a coalition that would remove guns from the homes of abusers. The company brass was concerned that their funders would balk. He told them to proceed and that he would take care of the blowback.
We conversed a lot before and after the program. There is no doubt that Mr. Carr is a Conservative. But he will talk and compromise to ensure policies move us forward, not necessarily in the manner I find is more optimal but progress nonetheless.
I joked with Brian that given some of his stances, some of my listeners would question his Conservative bona fides. The man is just a good person.
Some do not want to be bothered to address the other side. They believe they are deplorable. That is their choice, and I respect their choice. It takes eternal patience, empathy, and compassion and can be stressful. We will never get long-lasting successful policies unless we find the right formula to bring more in to create super-majorities. After all, we have proven that we support what most want while in their critical-thinking minds. Doing something is preferable to throwing our hands up in the air, assuming we have done all we can. It is the reason I wrote “It’s Worth It: How To Talk To Your Right-Wing Relatives, Friends, And Neighbors.”
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