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Steven Crowder’s ‘Conservative Socrates’ is something we should embrace.

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Socrates: History’s First Troll

There once was a man named Socrates who knew nothing. Upon hearing that the Oracle of Delphi, proclaimed him the wisest of all men, Socrates seeks to refute the Oracle. So he seeks the wisest men in society, the politicians. Much like today, he found these people to be abysmal fools. Then he sought the writers and poets. But he found that these people knew less about their own work than a bystander. He accredits their work to inspiration and talent. Finally he went to the craftsmen. These people were very wise in their own craft yet that caused them to speak on matters outside their expertise offsetting any wisdom they had shown. Thus Socrates concludes he is in fact the wisest man.

Now Socrates would ask people questions at the agora. Many people were shown to be utter fools in speaking to Socrates. His questions revealed how little they knew about what they claimed to be experts on. Embarrassed by being publically humiliated, Socrates eventually becomes unpopular enough to bring to trial, in which he is ultimately sentenced to death in an account written by Plato.

Socratic Method

Crowder isn’t inadvertently using the Socratic Method. He references it in the video. By giving the world an open invitation to challenge his views, he is sure to get some discussions. However in these discussions, he lets his guests explain their views and asks them questions about it. The Socratic Method is designed for the student to develop their own deeper understanding rather than have it be explained to them. In much of these discussions, Crowder seeks less to change someone’s views. Instead Crowder reveals how uninformed his “challengers” really are. This is far more effective than using talking points. Let liberals defend their flawed views under greater scrutiny. Only by giving their views closer examination will they see that they are misguided. As conservatives, we like to view ourselves as the logical side. However our goal should not be to simply win arguments. Rather, our goal should be to shift worldviews. Steven Crowder uses “Real Conversations” as a means to do that. And we should take a similar approach.

Further Readings

Daily Wire- WATCH: In Video Series ‘Change My Mind,’ Steven Crowder Engages With Opponents On Guns & Second Amendment

The topic of the first video is guns and the Second Amendment. Crowder speaks with two people who believe differently than he does, and although the conversations were apparently cut short when several police officers interrupted the filming, Crowder had some truly engaging and informative exchanges.

The Apology by Plato 399 BC

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