Political Thinkers: Sam Harris and Reza Azlan

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We'll continue the "Political Thinkers" series -- it examines the political and ideological viewpoints of prominent public figures, considered to be tremendously influential in their respective ideological camps.

For this discussion, we'll compare and contrast the views of the following contemporary individuals: Sam Harris and Reza Azlan. We'll explore the following questions:

- Do their views blur the lines of traditional ideological boundaries?
- What makes their appeal so controversial?
- Have their views and positions always remained intellectually consistent?
- What are their deep-rooted philosophical basis for their stated views and positions, if any?
- What do their rise to popularity indicate about the current cultural or political climate?

We will then view their positions on key policy matters, including:
- Islam vs. Secularism
- The role of religion in shaping public policies.
- The role of religion in international conflicts (past and present).
- Views on evolution and "creationism."
- The pervasiveness of "identity politics" in our society.
- Merits of political correctness (or lack thereof).
- The current state of "Liberalism."
- The "moral complexity" of genetics.

A portion of the discussions will be based on popular podcast episodes, "YouTube moments," or their literary work.

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The future "Political Thinkers" series may include a discussion of the following individuals (in alphabetical order): Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Julian Assange, Steve Bannon, Andrew Breibart, Ian Bremmer, David Brooks, William Buckley, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Ann Coulter, Noam Chomsky, James Damore, Richard Dawkins, Dinesh D'Souza, Nigel Farage, Niall Fergurson, David Frum, Nick Gillespie, Glenn Greenwald, Amy Goodman, Jonathan Haidt, Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, Alex Jones, Naomi Klein, Charles Murray, Maajid Nawaz, Reinhold Niebuhr, Ron Paul, Jordan Peterson, John Rawls, Steven Pinker, Joseph Stiglitz, Peter Thiel, Cornell West, and Howard Zinn.

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER
- The list above is not exhaustive, and it will be amended, as the organizers see fit.
- The NYCPF does not endorse or promote any of the views of these individuals.

PLEASE NOTE: the individuals above will NOT be appearing in-person -- these meetings are for DISCUSSION PURPOSES ONLY, in comparing and evaluating their views and ideologies.

Finally, in the next season, we will cover more historical individuals from various historical periods.

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Previous "Political Thinkers" series:

Milo Yiannopoulos, Ben Shapiro, Linda Sarsour, Cenk Uygur (Feb. 10, 2018): https://www.meetup.com/NYC-Politics/events/246998014/