There’s my side. And there’s The Flip Side.
Meet two friends who’ve got
different perspectives covered.
“He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that.” – John Stuart Mill
What if, rather than being constantly exposed to the dumbest, most insulting arguments on the other side of the aisle, we actively, intentionally pursued the most insightful, respectful and compelling ones?
Sounds like a pretty sensible thing to do, right? That’s what The Flip Side offers Americans every day – a free news service founded by politically diverse friends, Annafi and Jihan, that scours 30+ publications to daily curate especially thoughtful insights from both sides of the political spectrum on major issues.
Then, they serve it up for readers in a simple email. And just like that, these treasonous friends are changing the world, one reasonable argument at a time.
You’re going to want to hear their story. And believe us, they’ve got a lot of cool stuff to share from what they’ve been learning in this online experiment. Don’t underestimate what just hearing the best arguments on the other side can do.
South Asian, immigrant, liberal, boisterous, New Yorker, midnight snacker, day dreamer, grouchy optimist.
Jihan on Annafi: Annafi is always willing to burst her partisan bubble and consider her own biases. In the process, her enthusiasm usually manages to drag along anyone in her wake. She’s the sanest hippie I know!
Conservative, American, analytical, game-theorist, sardonic, confident, competitive, Vietnamese food lover, unrepentant Amazon shopper.
Annafi on Jihan: Jihan is one of the kindest and most patient people I’ve ever known. No matter what comes our way (irate emails, server crashes, last minute presentations), he not only takes it in stride but keeps me calm. I don’t know what I’d do without him!
More on their Treasonous Friendship:
The idea of The Flip Side was first conceived by Annafi. She reached out to friends asking them to introduce her to ‘smart, rational conservatives,’ and Jihan was one of the first people whom she met! The two bonded quickly over their shared love of politics and psychology.
Since starting this news service, they’ve reached tens of thousands of people – inviting more thoughtful exchange with every email they send, and everyone they touch…All because one progressive insisted on reaching beyond the partisan divide to find one conservative she could have a thoughtful conversation with.
If that one engaging, respectful conversation changed so much for these two, what could LOTS more of these conversations mean for society today? Might we not step off the edge as a people, cumulatively? (Think of all the new things we could do with our free time if we felt less compelled to harangue people who disagree with us. Clearly you can think of reading The Flip Side as a significant time-saving resource. It’s even possible it will prolong your life with fewer of those stress hormones coursing through your body.)
Their Talk: Bursting bubbles with The Flip Side…
Bias is everywhere, and yes, media bias is real. Rather than attempt to be nonpartisan, however, The Flip Side strives to be equally partisan. That’s why their editorial team consists of staunch conservatives, far-left liberals, and those in between.
The Flip Side founders share the (increasingly rare) belief that conservatives, liberals, tea-partiers, and Bernie bros all have valid aspects to their arguments. We may not always (or ever) agree on the full arguments, but in healthy relationships within a healthy society, those arguments still deserve to be heard. (Worth watching: an argument from Jonathan Rauch for why holding up our biases against the biases of others doesn’t just make us smarter, it makes society free. Booyah.)
Annafi and Jihan are also united by the belief that the status quo of liberals and conservatives living in two different media worlds cannot continue. According to The Pew Research Center, the only media outlet trusted by people across the political spectrum is The Wall Street Journal; liberals don’t trust Fox News or Breitbart, and conservatives don’t trust MSNBC or The New York Times. What does it mean for the future of our national conversation when our common language and any shared understanding is receding so quickly?
It may be hard to convince liberals to watch Fox or conservatives to watch MSNBC. But if everyone takes 5 minutes a day to consider especially thoughtful arguments that challenge them, we’ll have at least a starting point when talking to our friends and neighbors. That’s what they’re aiming for at The Flip Side.
The time-space continuum to consider: Annafi lives in New York City. Jihan lives in Chicago.
What the pair would need to come to your school: Travel and hotel and an honorarium of $250 each.
The Flip Side is a one-stop shop for smart, concise summaries of political analysis from both conservative and liberal media. Our goal is to become a news source for liberals, moderates, independents, conservatives, and even the apolitical.