It seems there are more and more topics we shy away from out of fear of offending, being shouted down, or getting “canceled.” We in the philanthropy sector can either accept this as a new reality, or we can remember that our voices have value. We can and we should be able to talk about just about anything—to explore our own thinking and the thinking of others, to understand ideas that various people hold and why they hold them, to discover what we will commit to standing up for, and to understand why we hate the evil ideas we do. Can We Talk About It? centers around these topics. Each week, we’re going to celebrate success and all the great work philanthropy does. We’re going to get uncomfortable sometimes. We’re definitely going have fun. And we’re going to rediscover our voices.
Interview with Lincoln Jones of the American Contemporary Ballet
The mission of the American Contemporary Ballet is to "produce and present choreographic works of the highest quality that exemplify dance as a musical art form." Yet there have been loud threats and demands that the company and its troupe declare themselves aligned with political causes, sign statements or even change its dance repertoire. ACB's director Lincoln Jones talks with host Debi Ghate this week about the nature of ballet, his company and the ideas threatening the essential freedom and individual voice and expression of the artists. Sign up to watch ACBTV(https://acbtv.vhx.tv). This interview was recorded on March 19, 2021. Visit our website www.philanthropyroundtable.org/podcasts
Interview with Professor Nicholas Meriwether and Attorney Tyson Langhofer
On March 26, 2021 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit ruled in favor of Philosophy Professor Nicholas Meriwether in the case of Meriwether v. Trustees of Shawnee State University. What was this case all about? In January of 2018, Meriwether refused to call a biologically male student by the requested pronouns “she/her.” Although he offered to refer to the student by any proper noun requested, his university threatened disciplinary action and later issued an ultimatum. Joining Debi Ghate, Nicholas and attorney Tyson Langhofer discuss the ideological implications of a pronoun, freedom of religion and free speech and the very purpose of the university in this week’s episode. This interview was recorded on December 21, 2020. Visit our website: www.philanthropyroundtable.org/podcasts
Interview with Mike Gonzalez
Around the 60s and 70s, conversations around civil rights and racial equity began to shift from a focus on color blindness and equality of opportunity to color consciousness and equality of results. In this episode, Debi Ghate is joined by Heritage Foundation Senior Fellow Mike Gonzalez as they explore the historical development of critical race theory and race-conscious policies, and the role philanthropy has played in it, identity politics, and his new book “The Plot to Change America.” This interview was recorded on December 9, 2020. Visit our website: www.philanthropyroundtable.org/podcasts
Interview with Carrie Lukas, president of the Independent Women’s Forum
Can privilege expand beyond race, gender and sexual orientation to include worldviews? If so, is there such a thing as progressive privilege? Carrie Lukas, President of the Independent Women’s Forum, suggests there is. She says “privilege” does exist, and it is usually aimed at whites, males and straight people. Yet in some parts of our culture, such as the academy and the media, the progressive view dominates in a way that also creates a marginalized and a privileged group. Join Debi Ghate as she discusses Lukas’s monograph, “Checking Progressive Privilege,” a controversial but very thought-provoking piece that challenges us to rethink “privilege.” This interview was recorded on December 4, 2020. Visit our website: www.philanthropyroundtable.org/podcasts
Interview with Jimmy Greene, President of Associated Builders and Contractors of Michigan (ABC)
Many symbols of the American dream can be found in the construction industry. Debi Ghate hosts President of Michigan Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) Jimmy Greene this week to discuss some of those analogies, protecting merit-based and free-enterprise building, the relationship between merit and justice, and the importance of educating against prejudices to produce proactive, rather than reactive justice. This interview was recorded on January 26, 2021. Visit our website: www.philanthropyroundtable.org/podcasts
Interview with Kenneth Stern and Nadine Strossen
In 2019, the Anti-Defamation League recorded the highest level of antisemitic incidents in its 40 years of tracking. In this week's episode, New York School of Law Professor Nadine Strossen and Kenneth Stern, director of the Bard Center for the Study of Hate, join Debi Ghate to discuss the reality of antisemitism, the larger context of racism and injustice, censorship and the academy, and reducing hateful attitudes through more expression and free speech, not less. This interview was recorded on December 22, 2020. Visit our website: www.philanthropyroundtable.org/podcasts
The world needs more of this!
The guests are consistently interesting and the host does a wonderful job of asking questions which bring out thoughtful responses on a range of topics in every interview. It’s a joy to listen to these conversations and this podcast has quickly become a must listen.
Kudos to Debi Ghate for her hosting skills and her ability to attract respectable thinkers to her podcast. I look forward to seeing this podcast grow.
Debi and her guests come to the conversation with open minds and fascinating topics. It leads to incredible conversations about issues at the forefront of our society today.
Civility in Action
Our nation needs more civil conversations like this.