In political debate, there is a tendency for one candidate to criticize the ideas of the opponent, if not the opponent her- or himself. What if we shifted from “no, because” debates to “yes, and” dialogue? At best, we could have some of the most passionate and committed people collaboratively creating innovative solutions. At worst, the candidate with the guts to try this method will totally throw off the opponent while exhibiting desirable characteristics desperately sought in our political leadership. Divisive political debate can transform into generative community dialogue. What is more important, winning an election or succeeding as a nation?
In debate, we need to decide. In discussion, we have the opportunity to discover. When we debate, someone is wrong and someone is right. When we discuss, we discover by learning more about ourselves and the other person.