I’ve come to realize that my personal Overton Window is much larger than most folks I come across. I can entertain and even understand ideas that are very different than my own. I loathe the term “open-minded” because that term has been twisted by the Left in recent years, but it also fails to fully encompass what I am talking about, anyway.
Some folks will say that they want to be proven wrong, or that they can be easily swayed by new evidence. I propose nothing of the sort. I am a curmudgeon and very stubborn. While it is possible to move me from my positions, and it has indeed been done before, it is not an easy task and I am not particularly amenable to it. You can prove me wrong, and if the quality of your proof is very high, I will move. Otherwise, no, I’m happy where I’m at, thank you.
Yet, at the same time I can understand how others arrive at conclusions I deem false, or misguided. I don’t necessarily subscribe to the notion that they are evil for having made a mistake, and I acknowledge that it is possible they are as stubborn and obstinate as myself. Thus the weight of evidence necessary to move them might also be very great, and simply beyond my skill to convey to them so that they can see things as I have.
So you can be very far from my position, and I will still respect you and treat with you, so long as that respect is returned. Quid pro quo, if you give no respect, you will receive none from me. But I am often disappointed in this. My Overton Window is wide and expansive, and only the most egregious of evils are wholly removed from it. But most people have very narrow windows, and there is a tendency for them to skew Left, such that any position to the Right is automatically suspect, but positions to their Left are deemed merely misguided.
This, by the way, goes for Conservatives also. I have debated many of them who are only slightly to my Left, and treat me with disdain, presuming that being to the Right of them somehow implies the trifecta of racism-sexism-homophobia. That trifecta comes out, by the way, whenever someone is wholly removed from a person’s Overton Window. Consider it a stand in for “that opinion is not acceptable to me, you either need to change it, or I will deem you evil.”
I have no idea how to fix this on a meta level. And on an individual level, I am liable to treat such people with the same disdain and loathing they treat me, which probably doesn’t further my cause any. Nonetheless, there is the problem, for what it is worth.