Cory Booker on PC culture: Is censoring others really the best way?

The key to changing hearts and minds for a better world? Lead with love, says Senator Cory Booker.

  • When asked to comment on the debate surrounding political correctness on college campuses, Senator Cory Booker recounts a personal story of a gay friend who, many years ago, patiently endured Booker's naive questions as he tried to understand gay culture.
  • Having the freedom to ask questions—even dumb, ignorant questions—helped Booker grow and become an LGBTQ ally. His friend's patience and generosity in answering those questions helped Booker understand that you should always "lead with love."
  • PC culture may stop people asking questions and learning, out of fear of being rebuked. Censorship may not be the best way. Booker suggests that a better path forward, for people on both sides, is to ask: Is my question reflective of love, of empathy, of compassion? Am I being gentle in how I deal with this?
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Who decides whether art is ‘good’ or ‘bad’?

Hierarchies of taste exist in our society, but their roots often reflect more than just the quality of work.

  • "Taste" in art and entertainment can often represent societal hierarchies, prejudices, and inequalities.
  • Part of the job of a critic is to refuse categorization of art as "high" or "low."
  • By challenging and redefining these assumptions, critics can level the playing field to include work from all walks of life.
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Q: Why did the woman cross the road?
A: Who cares! What the hell is she doing out of the kitchen?
Q: Why hasn't NASA sent a woman to the moon?
A: It doesn't need cleaning yet!

These two jokes represent disparagement humor – any attempt to amuse through the denigration of a social group or its representatives.

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Two-thirds of U.S. students attend diverse schools

School diversity is less widespread in central and northern states

Image courtesy of Cédric Scherer
  • In 2020, there will be more children of color than white children in the U.S.
  • These maps indicate how racial diversity is changing the demographics of America's schools
  • Diversity has massively increased, but more so in the south and on the coasts than elsewhere
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Study: Ending the racial wealth gap would add a trillion dollars to the economy

America's racial wealth disparity is entrenched, with devastating effects. What if we got rid of it?

Andy Cross/The Denver Post via Getty Images
  • A new study shows that the wealth gap in the United States is still here, huge, and affects every aspect of our economic lives.
  • The authors explain that narrowing the gap would increase GDP size substantially.
  • The study also reminds us that little will change without major policy changes.
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