West Metro Critical Thinking Club

Confessions of a Liberal

For most of his life, Kevin Hawkins believed that liberalism is so obviously ethical.  Liberals marched for peace, workers’ rights, civil rights, and secularism.  The Republican Party, which embodies conservatism, was the party of war, big business, racism, and evangelical Christianity.  He could not understand how any thinking person could voluntarily embrace the party of evil.  He felt that we have nothing to learn from conservative ideologies. 

And he was wrong.

For his presentation, Kevin “liberally” lifts concepts from “The Righteous Mind; Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion” by Jonathan Haight. 

Kevin got his degree in Psychology from the University of Minnesota,  owns an independent insurance agency, and has been married to his best friend, Beverly, for 35 years.

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  • Lee S.

    Per usual great presentation by Kevin Hawkins...challenged to think through how/where conservatives and liberals share same values.

    1 · February 24, 2014

  • Douglas H.

    Kevin makes you think about "the other". While I don't share all the views based on the research of Jonathan Haidt, I do value the effort to understand the "othe"

    1 · February 23, 2014

    • Kevin H.

      Doug, many of the changes we want to make in this world require that we change other people. The best way to approach that is to first understand who we are. Understand that both sides bring something of value to the table. That is what opens the door to human understanding and the potential for cooperation and progress.

      1 · February 24, 2014

  • Grace M.

    Great presentation

    1 · February 22, 2014

    • Grace M.

      Yep, and then Horace Mann dumped us....

      February 23, 2014

    • Kevin H.

      I've never regretted moving on from there.

      February 24, 2014

  • Kevin H.

    Great discussion and wonderful feedback from the group. What a great way to begin the weekend!

    February 23, 2014

  • Bob S.

    I had to miss Kevin's presentation in Stillwater and hope to make this one. I read Haight's book, "The Righteous Mind" and found that it provides a good framework for the liberal when engaging the conservative. It has helped me have some helpful conversations with a libertarian/conservative fellow I often encounter. Finding common ground on a number of issues is possible if I can avoid my knee-jerk reactions and hear his concerns. Despite our differing political positions we both find Bachman distasteful.

    1 · February 10, 2014

    • Kevin H.

      Bob, I'll be presenting again at the Maple Grove CTC on June 14.

      February 23, 2014

  • Nancy B.

    Tried to get there the roads said no. I hope to hear your talk another time.

    February 22, 2014

    • Matthew H.

      Darn icy roads! :-(

      February 22, 2014

    • Kevin H.

      The roads were really treacherous, Nancy. But you're in luck. I have an encore presentation on June 14 at the Maple Grove. CTC.

      February 23, 2014

  • Jim S.

    Kevin did an excellent job.... as usual. My wife had to miss it but Kevin tells me there will be another chance to see this presentation in May. We will be there. I don't know that he got whole hearted acceptance from liberals and conservatives, which could be a good sign.

    February 22, 2014

    • Kevin H.

      When I can cause a ruckus, I feel like my work is complete. BTW, the date for the MG presentation is 06/14/2014.

      February 23, 2014

  • Dr. Carla C.

    I started out from my home in West Bloomington, and came upon an accident at the first light. I went two more lights and found that I couldn't keep from slipping, either, so came back home. Look forward to May.

    February 22, 2014

    • Kevin H.

      I'm glad you didn't take the chance on the roads, Carla. BTW, my mistake about the date for the Maple Grove presentation. It will be on June 14.

      February 23, 2014

  • Douglas H.

    I used to be right, then I went left. I am still right! But, lets talk.

    1 · February 17, 2014

    • Kevin H.

      Doug, I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts about my presentation on Saturday. In the meantime, thanks for the insightful e-mails! ;-)

      February 17, 2014

  • Dr. Carla C.

    As an independent voter, this topic interests me.

    1 · February 12, 2014

    • Kevin H.

      You'll like it, Carla. I'll prove that both sides bring something of value to the table.

      February 12, 2014

  • Kevin H.

    Just as a background for this presentation, for years I was roped into believing the ideological divide between liberals and conservatives was tantamount to a struggle between good and evil. I bought in on the liberal perception that conservatives were selfish and vindictive people. Why else would they not want to contribute to the tax base? Why else would they want to take people off the welfare rolls? I began to choose my friends based on their political orientation. I no longer knew people who espoused values different from my own. I harshly judged those who weren’t part of my “team”. This is an unhealthy situation. It creates bitterness and animosity. It’s not who I am. This presentation represents part of the resolution to this dilemma for me.

    February 5, 2014

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