Thursday, January 26, 2012

How to reach the reachable

People are discussing this study showing a correlation between low IQ in childhood and racism in adulthood, but the following nugget in the article seems to be receiving less attention:
People who were poorer at abstract reasoning were more likely to exhibit prejudice against gays.
Besides perfectly explaining the comments left on gay-related articles on The Washington Post's Web site, this observation should give some insight into good ways to approach fence-sitters. Since not everyone is reachable, we should tailor our arguments to those most likely to accept them, including those who are good at abstract reasoning. In other words, we should downplay the emotion-driven twaddle that all too often accomplishes nothing but making us look bad.

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