Constructive Criticism


From a Heritage speech attendee:

I caught you at the Heritage Foundation on Wednesday. Great presentation; it made me glad I rescheduled the dentist appointment to make time for it. (there’s praise, huh?)

You asked for constructive criticism, so here’s the only bit I can come up with. Well, half criticism, I only noticed it at all because a friend mentioned that you seemed a little harsh in your treatment of liberals. Without pointing to anything specifically I did get the sense that the “fascist” label has you a little irked. But really, shouldn’t it? I think it irks us all, but after hearing it over and over, you notice that those using the label as an epithet haven’t really put any thought into what they’re saying or why.

And as for feeling nervous? You could have fooled me. You seemed straight and steady. You could have taken longer pauses when you stopped for sips of water, but really, you were always in the flow of ideas and I would have been silently saying, “yes, go on, go on,” if you had done a little time-out for each water break.

Me: I generally agree with  the constructive criticism. This is sort  of one of the reasons I regretted that I didn’t have time to hone the talk. My wife had the same reaction. I have a (sometimes) bad habit of feeling the need to make the audience laugh to make sure they’re paying attention. And, I think I probably scored too many partisan points in the process of trying to make my case.


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