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Yale Law Prof Laments ‘Bumper Sticker’ Discourse

Posted Sep 22, 2010 6:00 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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Yale University law professor Stephen Carter worries that Americans are losing the ability to debate in meaningful ways.

Democracy depends on civil discourse, Carter says, where people can sit and talk and work things out. He spoke on Friday at the inauguration of former independent counsel Kenneth Starr as Baylor University’s president, the Baptist Standard reports. More recently, Starr was dean of the Pepperdine University School of Law.

“The great symbol of the collapse of dialogue is the bumper sticker,” Carter said. He criticized the tendency to “reduce complex ideas to slogans and applause lines.” He is author of The Culture of Disbelief.

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