Mike Avi 3

Mike Avi

North American Operations Manager at Students For Liberty

At-Large Representative at Libertarian Youth Caucus

SEP 6, 2020, 10:41 AM

JE: I bet you are really busy these days. How’s it going?

MA: Indeed! We’re working on a lot of online student programming these days because of COVID. Has been a strange year no doubt. I’m well though. Hbu?

JE: Doing good, started a web page a Facebook page and a group…. keeps me busy. Really like that idea you had about using the SFL model for old farts… don’t know how I could learn the SFL model though.




MA: I think adapting the SFL model could be helpful. The biggest hurdle would be gatekeeping for behavior. In SFL, we don’t tolerate inappropriate communication or behavior. Professionalism is valued in and out of the activist space. 

In the few instances where there’s a leader with a bad attitude, they’re ejected. I’ve never seen a non-student org successfully implement that kind of policy. But there are enough caustic personalities that it’d be necessary for an organization modeled after SFL. 

Otherwise, the infighting of the LP would just be replicated.

JE: Yes, that is the stuff I need to learn how to do…

MA: We use the R.I.S.E. model;

RESPECTFUL: Don’t cuss, threaten, or get personal. Remember that no one changes their mind due to name-calling, and being respectful improves optics in public forums. Being disrespectful can cause your conversation partner to double down or disengage. That’s no way to change minds.

INTELLIGENT: Know what you’re talking about. Use sources and ask for sources. Use language that others will understand and use technical language accurately. In general, unless you’re memeing or joking, avoid lazy arguments or fallacies.

STRATEGIC: Sometimes the best strategy involves knowing when and when not to argue a point. If someone has become very emotional about the topic or is getting very personal with you, that’s a good sign you should stop engaging.

EMPATHETIC: Have patience. Not everyone has the same knowledge or personal experiences. It takes longer for some people to get where you’re coming from. No one is born with an ideology. Use empathy to relate to your conversation partner and communicate your ideas more effectively.

JE: Could I go to LibertyCon?

MA: You absolutely can. It’s still being planned – COVID is creating a whole list of challenges for planning, so it’s taking a bit to handle each before we begin promotion.

JE: Keep me informed… sounds like fun.

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