Here’s an interesting little snippet of an interview between Piers Morgan and Rick Warren on the Bible’s teachings about homosexuality and whether it should be “amended” (not clear what that means). I found a couple of things interesting. Morgan is right to observe that these conversations need to be respectful and that they have a habit of turning poisonous. He would seem to be the kind of guy with whom you would want to discuss issues of this sort. But notice the comment in the second-to-last paragraph. The author of the blog entry that summarizes this exchange (Paul Mirengoff) points out that Morgan’s previous comments in another context are not respectful. Note also that Mirengoff ends the blog entry with a cutting remark against Morgan. Irony of ironies.
Here are a few observations that we can all take away from this little exchange:
- Morgan is right that we should be respectful in these conversations
- Morgan got burned in the blog entry by being having an inconsistent approach to these conversations. He is disrespectful at one point, and in one conversation, and then respectful in another. Integrity is the key here; consistency in our actions and attitudes.
- Morgan’s previous comments are a matter of public record. Once again this demonstrates why people should be very careful about engaging in these kinds of conversations in a digital manner in our digital age. Even a single poorly worded email, Facebook post, discussion forum comment, etc can haunt you! Tread carefully online and give preference to in-person discussions.
- Mirengoff is not respectful in his treatment of Morgan. It is one thing to point out that somebody else has been inconsistent in their words and actions – there is nothing disrespectful about that – and quite another thing to end off the article with the deliberate and unnecessary dig at the person you are critiquing. He has revealed himself to be no better than the one he is criticizing.
If we only had the YouTube video snippet of the interview to go on, that would be a fairly good illustration of how to have these kinds of conversations. As it stands, though, the article provides a great different example by contrasting the right way to converse and the wrong way to converse.