Last week I was at the National Communication Association Convention in Chicago. As I rode the shuttle from one location to another, I overheard a gentleman pontificating about the “fact” that the overwhelming majority of Americans oppose health care reform. He continued in this vein the whole trip back. I sat there, struggling with myself. One side of me said “It’s been a long day…This guy isn’t going to listen anyway… If he’s going to blatantly make up statistics that are totally contrary to the findings of actual polls with actual people, there’s no room for discussion….They’re not talking to you anyway and it would be rude to interrupt.” The other side of me was saying “Seriously, if you don’t challenging these uninformed blowhards at every opportunity, people will accept what they say with such confidence even if it IS blatantly inaccurate”….”You’ve got the stats, call him on this!…. “Seriously, speak up!!!!!” The tired side won out.
However, that means that you, dear readers, who may have found yourself in similar circumstances and chose not to speak might benefit from the attached powerpoint. Tammy Allen, Lynn Stephan and I developed this for The Group in Wichita and thought we might share it here. Let us know what you think. Agree…. disagree…. whatever you think. For us the critical issue is that we engage….which I regret to say I did NOT on the bus ride in Chicago.