The Assault on The Culture Warrior: I’ll read it if it’s the same as my other books

According to a psychological prinicple known as “confirmation bias,” we tend to seek out or interpret information that confirms our preconceived opinions. We all do this. If you disagree, try this experiment. Think of the last time you sought out and read a book that you knew was contrary a strongly held opinion or belief. My guess is you probably haven’t. After all, what’s the point? Why would you want to have your opinion challenged? If you have, it was probably like me, who often seeks out books that are contrary only to understand the enemy, or see why they’re wrong. : )

It is in that spirit that I have began reading, somewhat simultaneously, Bill O’Reilly’s Culture Warrior, and Al Gore’s The Assault On Reason. O’Reilly offends a lot of people. His is not a book that I would read normally, but I’m reading it. With an (arguably) open mind. To balance that (arguably), I’m reading Gore, who also offends some people. Some might even suggest that Gore’s book itself is an assault on reason.

I believe that in order to truly be rational, thinking citizen, we must seek out information from all over the spectrum. We don’t need to agree with everything, of course, but learning about other’s perspectives will help us understand each other, unify people across partisan lines, and make us more thoughtful in what we do believe.

Any suggestions (from all sides) of books I might want to read? One caveat: I’m not ready to read Ann Coulter, so please don’t suggest that. : )

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About shenpa warrior

"Patience is not learned in safety." View all posts by shenpa warrior

4 responses to “The Assault on The Culture Warrior: I’ll read it if it’s the same as my other books

  • WP

    After reading some of O’Reilly’s quotes from and digs of secular humanist George Lakoff I want to get more of his (Lakoff’s) stuff. I think Bill would be very disappointed I would do that especially since he gave me and a bunch of other business owners autographed copies of his “Culture Warrior” last year in New York City.

  • M.A.

    didn’t I give you lakoff’s book, moral politics? there’s also a shorter version, don’t think of an elephant. he’s swell!

  • Adam

    I also have a copy of “Moral Politics” but I’ve not read it entirely yet. I have to admit, though, while I do agree with some of what Lakoff talks about, some it is pretty out there for me. I guess I felt the same about O’Reilly, but I can see why O’Reilly doesn’t like Lakoff’s ideas. I’m kind of in a position now where I agree with some of what a lot of people say, while disagreeing with some of it, and not being sure about other parts.

    I understand O’Reilly a lot better now, and it provided an interesting perspective–once you get past all the negative press about him and his somewhat abrasive style. Gore’s book is intersting too. I guess my new goal politically (and maybe in other areas as well) is to not, as Gore quotes from someone in his book (can’t remember who), confuse “rearranging my prejudices” with thinking. That’s really what most of us do unless we’re careful.

  • WP

    Prejudice in defense of personal liberty, agency and thought is a virtue. I have to defend my prejudices against the right wing conservative Christians, both the Mormons, and born agains. They are they who are of the church of white born and seek to oppress my friends who are brown, black, or different and would exclude them from the wedding feast. Those are they who shall say at the last day, ‘Master, have we not cast out the black, the brown, the GLTG community in thy name, have we not preserved our purity and whiteness?’ They are those who have no place for Jess and Jody and others who have to find their spiritual needs at St. Stephens Episcopal in WVC or the other places while Jess is dying of ALS. I am ashamed. These are they who are the modern equivalent of the scribes and Pharisees.

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