Lately, in a lot of different discussions on a lot of different topics, ranging from comics to homosexuality to religion, I’ve heard an argument over and over, which can be distilled down to this:
“Just sit down and be quiet and wait until the nice man lets you have your turn to speak.”
In other words, you should never shout to be heard. You should never interrupt anyone else. Don’t say anything distasteful…you don’t want to offend your audience when talking about, say, the inhumanity of torture. There’s no need for name-calling or sarcasm because that will just bias people against you. Don’t rock the boat, don’t make waves, don’t talk out of turn, and eventually you will have a chance to make your reasoned, non-emotional, quiet plea for what you want.
This seems to be a perfect prescription for success, if your goal is to not meddle with the status quo.
Wake up, folks. The nice man isn’t going to let you have a turn. There may not be enough time at the end of the presentation for your questions. He would love to stay and chat but he’s got somewhere to be that he’s already late for. Your call will not be answered.