A Conservative Of Doubt

Below is an excerpt from a moderated talk between Jon Rauch and David Blankenhorn, the conservative marriage advocate famous for switching sides in the Prop 8 debate to testify for same-sex marriage:

[Krista Tippett, host of "On Being"]: You wrote this: "What I need as a doubting person is the wisdom of the other."

Mr. Blankenhorn: See, because if I don't have any doubt, I don't need you. I should be nice to you out of manners, but I don't need a relationship with you. I may want you to be available to be lectured by me so that you can come to the correct view and I may want to treat you politely for that reason, but I don't really need you. As I grow older, I grow in doubt and that's good. And I feel like that that's a healthier way to be. And if I am not sure that I have the full truth of the matter, I need you.

Civility allows me to have a relationship with you. It feeds me what I need. You know, when you're in the public eye and you change your mind, well, that's viewed as a sign of weakness. And then if you express doubt about something, that's viewed as a sign of weakness today, especially in this hyperpartisan everybody wants to be tough-minded.

In the above video, David asks Minnesotans to vote against the state's constitutional ban on marriage equality. For a flashback to more contentious days between Jon and David, in 2007, go here and here