If you don’t believe you can reach the human heart, why the hell are you in politics in the first place? | Street Jazz

Thursday, August 20, 2015

If you don’t believe you can reach the human heart, why the hell are you in politics in the first place?

Posted By on Thu, Aug 20, 2015 at 1:31 AM

The history of American politics is a tale of passion and eloquence, of men and women using the power of persuasion to convince others of the rightness of their cause.

I have been thinking - and rethinking - about Hillary Clinton’s belief that you can’t change hearts, and it just flies in the face of everything I have learned over the years, both through personal observation and in studying history.

Though the modern American Facebook/Twitter approach to political writing seems to be one of hurling schoolyard invective at your opponents (sadly, there are both liberals and conservatives who seem to believe that insulting someone is persuading them) and politicians have been taking the same approach for some time, sullying our general intellect, our collective history is replete with the stories of men and women who wrote and spoke passionately about what concerned them . . .

. . . and managed to change the minds those who were previously opposed to them.

In fact, I have long felt that only through passion and eloquence can progress be made, whether it be racial progress, sexual equality, environmental justice, issues of peace and war, championing the rights of the working class - or a thousand and one other issues which face us today.

There are folks who dismiss both passion and eloquence - mainly, I suspect, because they have neither passion nor eloquence in their political utility belts.

But if you want to keep folks interested, to keep the working class in your corner, a little passion, a little eloquence, go a long way.

This should not be confused with the often incoherent anger which accompanies some political movements - whose rallies all too often look like real life assemblies of rabid Facebook posters.

Change laws, yes, but convince people of the need to change them. as well.

******

Quote of the Day

“To remember an hour and five minutes of continuous dialogue is really stressful.” - Actor Rafe Spall on the pressure of appearing in a play with only two actors


rsdrake@cox.net

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