One of my favorite quotes:
“…when women have a conversation, they’re communicating on five
levels. They follow the conversation that they’re actually having, the
conversation that is specifically being avoided, the tone being applied
to the overt conversation, the buried conversation that is being covered
only in subtext, and finally the other person’s body language.”
― Jim Butcher, Cold Days
Chris Wallace asked President Trump: “You have repeatedly criticized the
vice president for not specifically calling out Antifa and other
left-wing extremist groups, but are you willing tonight to condemn white
supremacists and militia groups, and to say that they need to stand down
and not add to the violence in a number of these cities, as we saw in
Kenosha and as we’ve seen in Portland?”
“Sure, I’m willing to do that,” Trump replied. But then the debate
degenerated into quibbling. It had to, because of all the levels of
conversation. Here’s Trump’s answer explained more fully:
Level One – the conversation we’re having: Yes, I condemn violence.
Level Two – the conversation we’re avoiding: Biden’s side is actually
committing the violence, not mine.
Level Three – the tone: I’ll be honest and fair, telling both sides to
stand down, including my own.
Level Four – the subtext: I will maintain public order so your children
will be safe.
Level Five – body language: You can tell I’m sincere because I look
And one more level – the headline he must avoid – “Trump Concedes
Supporters are Violent Racists.”
How I long for the days when the issue was a simple “Resolved” and my
team was assigned either Pro or Con.
To be fair, the Democrats aren’t communicating to people who perceive particularly well on one level, much less five.