By Sarah Stewart Holland and Beth Silvers | Amazon.com | 224 pages
Published in February of 2019
SUMMARY: Pantsuit Politics Podcast co-hosts and lawyers Sarah Stewart Holland and Beth Silvers have over 525 episodes and five years of experience talking about controversial issues. In I Think You’re Wrong (But I’m Listening) the duo distills the lessons they’ve learned from the podcast into ten rules for Christians to guide them as they discuss politics.
“The important thing to know about the polarization in American politics today is that we are choosing it,” the duo writes. “We are choosing division. We are choosing conflict. We are choosing to turn our civic sphere into a circus. We are choosing all of this, and we can choose otherwise.”
From advocating for talking about politics, to getting curious about other people’s views, to being comfortable with nuance and paradox, Holland and Silvers provide practical ways to breakout of political divisiveness and engage in conversations with grace and nuance.
“When we begin with offering grace, the ways in which we orient our conversations fundamentally change,” they say. “We begin by offering each other the benefit of the doubt instead of being ready to pounce on the first weakness or illustration of conflict. We begin by prioritizing our shared connection to one another instead of our conflicts. We move forward instead of shutting down.”
The standout parts of the book are when they detail their research, struggles and epiphanies as they breakdown a topic and debate the details with each other. Some of the topics where they go into depth include trade, the affordable health care act and abortion. Chapter 9 is one of the best chapters as they give practical tips for consuming news and an explanation of their superb, “Exit the Echo Chamber ” challenge.
KEY QUOTE: “Paradox is disorienting at times. It is also empowering. It can be empowering to say, ‘I don’t know.’ It can be empowering to trust the testimonies and experiences of others. As people of faith, we should know that and live that experience.”
BONUS: Read our review of the Pantsuit Politics podcast.
BONUS II: Listen to Stewart Holland and Silvers talk about I Think You’re Wrong (But I’m Listening) on The Politics Guys podcast.
BONUS III: Listen to chapter 1 at PantsuitPoliticsShow.com.