On conversation

I was part of a fascinating breakfast discussion this morning fueled by the controversial topic of federal bailouts.

There were five of us at the table, each one with unique perspectives drawn from varied experiences that evidenced themselves through the course of conversation. There was a small business owner, a director of a non-profit and a very articulate historian/libertarian. For the most part I played the listener, a skill I’m trying to reclaim since my unintentional conversion to extroversion in college, since I’m largely ignorant on the complexities of economics and politics (though I do have my own opinions).

However, the topics, perspectives and opinions — as interesting as they were — are less impressive to me in retrospect than the manner in which the discourse took place. Namely, the discourse was civil. It was respectful. Opinions were strong and at times divergent, but each party’s perspective was heard without particular animosity. Individuals, like I’ve seen so many times before, weren’t defensive and subsequently arrogant or condescending.

This was productive conversation, the kind that doesn’t seem to happen often enough for the good of an individual, a country or humanity. Let’s all have more good conversation.


About pcNielsen
Paul Nielsen founded The Aesthetic Elevator late in 2005. He owns a piece of paper, located somewhere in his house (not on the wall), stating that he earned a B.F.A. from the University of Nebraska around about 2001. While there, he studied studied architecture, graphic design and ceramics, graduating with a degree in studio art. Paul presently serves as communications manager for a small non-profit doing their print design and marketing. He spends as much time sculpting in his studio as possible — which is not nearly enough. Visit his website at pcNielsen.com.

One Response to On conversation

  1. Pingback: Is our lack of civil discourse tied to consumerism? « The Aesthetic Elevator

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