Thank you for the piece, Emma. You had some really good stuff in here that I was happy to highlight :)
I did want to say that on a fundamental level, I respectfully disagree with the notion that ignoring a social issue like racism will address it in any sort of long term capacity. I feel that these ideas should have a platform so they can be challenged and beaten. I don’t see a risk of people being indoctrinated into hateful ideas through witnessing a debate that does not already exist by just letting those that spout these things to their own devices. We live in the age of the internet. Everyone has a voice. You will never be able to no platform these people, but you can beat them on the debate stage.
In regards to Maher, I don’t think having Milo on was the problem. The problem with that appearance is that he did not challenge Milo enough. I’ve re-watched it a couple of times and every time I see Maher put his hands up and say “fair enough”, I cringe. I expect better from him. He has a platform built on dismantling rhetoric and to see him fail to do so as it’s presented in REAL TIME (puns!) was not great. I look forward to seeing Maher do better in the future. I know he’s capable of it.
That’s not to say that I agree with the idea of shaming. I feel that we are an ambassador for our ideas, and we should always be civil when presenting them. I absolutely agree that so many more people are about self satisfaction than actually informing others and that’s where the need to shame and bully comes from, even if they are on the side of progress. It’s toxic behavior that benefits no one.
Ultimately, I feel that if we do really want to change minds, we have to talk to people. We have to do it calmly and often. It’s not easy and it’s not a blanket solution, but ignoring or attacking these people is not a solution at all. Thanks for again for writing and reading my response.