Reasonable hopes

Any person subjected to the categorial disrespect we call bigotry will experience indignation. A self-respecting disrespected person is likely to protest the bigotry and attempt to reason with their persecutors.

If the indignation of the disrespected is also disrespected, their appeals to reason are ignored, condemned or mocked, and the rejection of the protest against bigotry is itself justified by the logic of bigotry, the indignation will be compounded, and the conflict will escalate beyond reason, because reason cannot function in the absence of respect.

By reason, I do not mean mere logic. Reason is deeper than logic in that it includes the possibility of dialogical epiphany, which reveals new grounds for new understandings, new beliefs and surprising new logical conclusions.

As long as we refuse to entertain and act on the possibility that we might experience an epiphanic insight, we cannot respect, nor can we reason, nor can we reasonably hope for peace.

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