Michael Sandel: The lost art of democratic debate

Harvard’s Sandel offers a pithy “real-world” introduction to thinking about justice – Aritstotle’s still “da man” – and defense of reasoned, democratic debate.

There is a tendency to think that if we engage too directly with moral questions in politics, that’s a recipe for disagreement, and for that matter a recipe for intolerance and coercion; so better to shy away from, to ignore, the moral and the religious convictions that people bring to civic life. It seems to me that our discussion reflects the opposite: that a better way to mutual respect is to engage directly with the moral convictions citizens bring to public life, rather than to require that people leave their deepest moral convictions outside politics before they enter. That, it seems to me, is a way to begin to restore the art of democratic argument.

(H/T Normblog)

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