31 August 2016



Conor Friedersdorf brings an independent-minded perspective to dialogues on politics and culture.


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Jun 9, 2014 — Conor Friedersdorf & Phoebe Maltz Bovy
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On Friedersdorf, Conor and Phoebe discuss the plague of parental oversharing. What kind of privacy is owed to celebrities like Justin Bieber? Phoebe describes traveling to Japan, where it was impossible for her to “pass” as a native. Moving to the Isla Vista shooting, Conor argues that the media should deny notoriety to mass shooters. Phoebe complicates the narrative around #YesAllWomen, and wonders whether “rape culture” is a useful term. Conor and Phoebe critique the idea of “checking your privilege”—is this just a way for insanely privileged people to nitpick each others’ lives? Plus: Why Conor is accused of privilege when he criticizes drone warfare.
May 2, 2014 — Conor Friedersdorf & Mark Joseph Stern
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On Friedersdorf, Conor and Mark discuss a North Carolina church that’s suing for the right to perform same-sex weddings. Does this case show that conservatives are hypocrites about religious freedom? Conor and Mark are both troubled by an Oregon case in which the state’s gay marriage ban is going undefended in court. Has Clippers owner Donald Sterling received due process? They discuss how condemning Sterling’s cartoonish racism lets us off the hook for more insidious forms of bias, like housing discrimination. Is there a downside to the strong American taboo against racism? Plus: Why same-sex marriage is not a slippery slope to polygamy.
Mar 12, 2014 — Conor Friedersdorf & Mark Joseph Stern
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On an epic edition of Friedersdorf, Conor and Mark debate issues arising from the case of the New Mexico photographer who refused to shoot a gay wedding. How much does motivation—hate, animus, or religious conviction—matter in these disputes? Conor reflects on his Catholic upbringing to discuss religious believers who think encouraging same-sex marriage is sinful. Should a gay photographer be legally compelled to shoot a traditional Catholic wedding? Conor and Mark debate how non-discrimination laws should work. Does the photographer have a First Amendment case? Mark challenges Conor with a hypothetical town where the restaurants refuse to serve gay people. Finally, are we heading toward a future with more or less conflict between gay rights and religious freedom?