How do you debate a liberal who is determined to paint you as a racist, sexist, homophobe who still believes the Earth is flat?
For the answer, we look to KTTH host Ben Shapiro, fabled agitator of leftists everywhere. Shapiro has figured out a winning formula to defeat flawed leftist rhetoric.
On Oct. 3, 2013, Shapiro gave a groundbreaking lecture at the University of California San Diego’s David Horowitz Freedom Center called “How to Debate a Liberal,” a systematic guide to trouncing a lefty opponent.
Want a free eBook of Shapiro’s “How to Debate a Liberal” lesson? Click here to sign up to be a member – it’s free! – at Shapiro’s Truth Revolt website.
Shapiro opened his lecture with a useful lesson from recent political history: that Republicans lost the 2012 presidential election not because of policy, but because Democrats were able to frame Mitt Romney as a “bad guy,” and Barack Obama as a “nice guy.”
It’s a common leftist “bully tactic,” Shapiro says, that you must outmaneuver in order to win the debate.
Here are Shapiro’s steps to winning an argument against a liberal.
EMBRACE THE FIRE
Politics is war, Shapiro says, crediting his late friend Andrew Brietbart. So, if you’re going to get into a debate with a liberal, be ready to punch them hard – but also be willing to sustain a few punches yourself.
“You have to be willing to take the first punch,” Shapiro said.
Of course, that’s a rhetorical punch. You can land a hard one with the next step.
FRAME YOUR OPPONENT
Discussing gun control with liberal CNN host Piers Morgan on live TV in January 2013, Shapiro scored a near knockout in the first few seconds of the debate by framing his opponent. He accused Morgan of standing on the graves of murdered children to further his anti-gun agenda.
The result? Shapiro appeared as the victor in the debate, and as a reasonable, levelheaded, and competent opponent. Turn your lefty opponent’s ludicrous tactics against them by framing them as the bad guy.
FRAME THE DEBATE
Just as important as step No. 2 is putting your opponent on the defensive by framing the debate in a way that they are unfamiliar with, Shapiro says.
If the debate is about global warming, do not debate on whether it is manmade. Rather, debate about what policies can solve it.
If you are debating gun rights, prepare yourself for the standard liberal argument, which is that we don’t need guns at all. Instead, ask them what we can do to curb gun violence, and violence as a whole.
“You have to frame the debate in ways they’re not familiar with,” Shapiro said. “Otherwise, it turns into a character argument. You’re a flat-Earther, you’re corrupt, you’re mean, you’re stupid – these are the lines of [liberal] attack.”
SPOT THEIR INCONSISTENCIES
Every single leftist argument is full of inconsistencies. They claim they want marriage equality, but at the same time they want to force churches to endorse an irreligious practice; they want universal government-sponsored health care, but they do not support forcing people to become doctors, which would be necessarily to support such a massive program.
The positive thing is this irrational logic is easy to spot. Do not be afraid to point out these wacky contradictions.
FORCE THEM TO ANSWER QUESTIONS
Sure, liberals love to put conservatives on the defense by forcing them to answer questions, but do liberals have to answer?
Force them to answer questions. If they are pro-gay marriage, ask them which parent is less vital to a family: the mother or the father. Chances are, they’ll have to concede that a family is better with a mother and a father, not just one or the other. And, if they’re for the separation of church and state, ask them if they think government should be forced to perform same-sex marriages.
DON’T GET DISTRACTED
Liberals love George W. Bush. That is, they love to invoke his name to prove that Republicans and conservatives are incompetent. Ignore weak rhetorical tactics. Stay focused on the debate at hand, not left field references that leftists use to make you look weak.
YOU DON’T HAVE TO DEFEND ALL CONSERVATIVES
It’s not your job to defend every conservative. Conservatives are human and often do any say things you might not always disagree with. Just because you voted for someone and largely agree with their views doesn’t mean you have to defend them.
If your liberal opponent wants to bring up something Reagan did or said 30 years ago, tell them to build a time machine. If you stand around defending every conservative ever, you’re going to waste a bunch of time and energy.
IF YOU DO NOT KNOW SOMETHING, ADMIT IT
You are not an oracle, and you’re not Google. You don’t need to know everything.
If a liberal challenges you on a topic you’re unfamiliar with, politely decline to talk about it. You’re allowed.
“If you don’t know something, don’t discuss the topic,” Shapiro said. “Say, ‘I haven’t researched it sufficiently.’ If they insist, tell them that they’re being unfair.
“Ego will kill you in these kinds of debates.”
LET THEM HAVE MEANINGLESS VICTORIES
Do you stand for diversity? Of course, why not?
Are you in favor of immigration reform? You betcha.
Conceding certain points to a liberal will accomplish several things. First, it puts them off guard. When they ask you if you support immigration reform, they’re expecting you to say “no,” which would allow them to accuse you of being a racist. The thing is the term “immigration reform” is essentially meaningless, which allows you to agree with it without conceding your position.
Second, it will make the liberal think you are more of a moderate, which has the effect of softening their rhetorical attack.
Above all, remember that leftists are not there to debate you; they are there to use you to prove that conservatism is a radical ideology that professes racist, sexist ideals. It isn’t true, of course, but you can’t win an argument with someone who hates you for your beliefs.
Instead, debate liberals on substance and policy, Shapiro says.
“The left has only one play,” Shapiro says. “The play is ‘you’re nasty.’”
Christian forced to close her bakery sums up the left's tolerance in two sentencesOctober 1, 2014A baker who had to close her shop writes of the 'two huge lies' that the left permeates.
Things Are Better, You Just 'Don't Feel It'September 30, 2014The president says he can put his record against any leader around the world in terms of digging out of financial crisis
Holder OutSeptember 29, 2014Attorney General Eric Holder is resigning
Funny TimingSeptember 25, 2014Environmentalist donates $1M to WA campaigns as study shows Northwest climate change natural
Ben Shapiro: Obama on every side of every conflictSeptember 24, 2014It's no surprise President Obama is currently bombing Syria without Congressional approval
Clinton 40 years late on equal pay issueSeptember 22, 2014Michael Medved says "equal pay" legislation Democrats push today would merely make it easier for lawyers to file suits.
Dems questioning Wasserman SchultzSeptember 19, 2014Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz might have made one too many absurd public statements.
Shapiro: The conversation we won't haveSeptember 18, 2014To state that the greatest risk factor for future domestic violence is insulting other boys as "throwing like girls" is pure idiocy
Carney: 2014 not good for DemocratsSeptember 17, 2014Jay Carney proclaimed that things don't look good for his party
CNN vs. CNNSeptember 15, 2014Anderson Cooper stings new CNN contributor Jay Carney for false claim
Imposing GuiltSeptember 12, 2014Who will benefit from silly symbolic strikes against long-dead heroes?
Welfare Pot Purchases OKSeptember 11, 2014The federal government OKs marijuana purchases with welfare funds
Shapiro Rips ObamaSeptember 10, 2014In an appearance on Fox News, KTTH's Ben Shapiro made some strong statements on the president
How $15 affects your Big MacSeptember 8, 2014What would likely happen if a $15-per-hour minimum wage went into effect across the country
Wasserman Schultz rebuked by Left for rantSeptember 5, 2014Even some on the Left have had to rebuke Debbie Wasserman Schultz after her Scott Walker rant
Gen. McInerney on new 9/11 threat: 'Beware America, they are coming for us'September 4, 2014Retired Air Force Lt. General Thomas McInerney said again that America is facing a dire new 9/11 threat.
ISIS executes Steven SotloffSeptember 3, 2014A video released by the terrorist group ISIS seemingly shows the beheading of the American hostage Steven Sotloff.
Dems, GOP split on handling moneyAugust 29, 2014Michael Medved says a new report reveals an important distinction between the two major parties when it comes to handling money.
Trying to understand the protest of Mars Hill ChurchAugust 28, 2014David Boze spoke with a former Mars Hill Church member about why he's protesting the pastor.
Guns in America DebateSeptember 2, 2014Join AM 770 KTTH for our third debate in the "Freedom Series: Guns in America."
KTTH religious freedom debate
Video: Religious freedom debate Watch the debate between Ben Shapiro, James Wellman, Valerie Tarico, Rev. Monica Corsaro, and Michael Medved.
KTTH Debate Video
Video: Minimum wage debate Watch the debate between host Ben Shapiro and Socialist Seattle Councilwoman Kshama Sawant.
Real Estate Corner
Robin's Real Estate Reality Talk We are in a very unique market. Right now our area is showing signs of recovery. We are moving in a positive direction and gaining equity though are ways off from where we were in 2006 and 2007.