Busted Halo
feature : word on ths street
February 6th, 2007
Word on the Street : Different People

Do you like talking with people of different religious or political beliefs than you have? Have you ever had a conversation with someone of different views in which your own view changed as a result?

Mark, 30
"I have no problem talking to anybody. I think that's just the way to get ahead. You've gotta be able to love your neighbor and talk to your neighbor. [The Bible] doesn't say you have to like them. Even on the hill, in Congress, how would we get anything passed without bipartisan support?...Yes. I think whenever we do come into contact [with people of different views] and we're really open to having serious dialogue—I think if you come to the table and don't expect to be changed, then you're not really having dialogue but if you open yourself up to change—I think that both parties will be enriched. And I don't think that two people can come together without being changed."
Yvonne, 22
"Religious beliefs, yeah. Political beliefs, it's a little exhausting to be honest because I'm not ever gonna really budge on my beliefs. But I think it's important to actually hear what people have to say and at least know what you're up against. But in terms of religious views I think all religions are beautiful and I think everyone should learn about all of them. I'm sure I have [had conversations in which my views changed] but not that I can remember. I'll have to think about it."
Danielle, 23
"Yes because I don't know all the answers and I don't think anyone should claim they know all the answers. I think we're all here to try to figure it out and try to take in as much as we can from other people in life and hopefully create our own philosophies and our own values based on our own life experiences...I wouldn't say my views changed [from a conversation], I would say they evolved. Some conversations have definitely made me think differently and helped to further shape my evolving worldview."
Luis, 21
"Yeah, definitely, because I feel like when you stick with your own kind of people you don't really get to learn that much but when you talk to people that are different from you, then you get to see their side of the story and where they are coming from. I think that one of the great things about humans is that we have such a great capacity to share knowledge and when you talk to different people, you have the opportunity to share knowledge and sharing knowledge I think is the answer."
Gesus, 20
"Well I've been to a lot of meetings regarding political and religious beliefs and I always listened but I never had any desire to comment on anything. Usually, with that stuff, I don't have any opinions about it whatsoever."
Nicole, 23
"Oh yeah. That's actually one of my favorite things to do. I think sometimes, being in a young liberal community, I get frustrated not having opposing views because I think that's how you really get to a place of finding new thoughts, finding new ways of looking at things. My favorite thing is to talk to people like my dad who is a crazy Republican. It's frustrating but it makes me see things differently and I think it's important for people to expose themselves to that stuff and not live in a box. I definitely have [had conversations in which my views changed]. I can't think of the exact example. I've had a lot of arguments with my dad but he's helped me see things in a different way."
Yohana, 18
"I don't know. I have friends like that so I guess I wouldn't mind...No, I've never been changed by a conversation with someone of different views."

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