Increasingly we’re hearing from Hindu parents across the US that when their children go to college they come back ‘doing a 180,’ having adopted anti-Hindu sentiments that have become mainstream in academia and much media.
What follows are some tips and ways of stimulating conversation around the contentious topics college students are bringing back to parents.
General tips for discussing contentious issues
- Aim for conversation not convincing. This means responding calmly and thoughtfully to questions or comments, and more importantly, asking questions and actively listening.
- Be humble. Admit when you don’t know something and be open to learning more, together maybe even from your child.
- Encourage media literacy. Families should diversify sources of news and information, and not rely on just one, no matter how prestigious or well known, or how well they report on other issues or regions of the world. At a given publication, coverage of certain places, communities, or issues may be excellent, but biased and subpar when it comes to Hinduism, Hindus, or India — and vice versa.