Permission To Play Devil’s Advocate Denied -The Toast

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This classic Toast post originally ran on October 2, 2013.

Dear Applicant,

Thank you for submitting your recent inquiry. According to our records, on September 27th, you interrupted a conversation with your request: “Look, if I could just play devil’s advocate for a second here…”

It’s with very real regret that we must inform you that your petition to play devil’s advocate has been denied. Thank you for your interest in the devil’s advocate position; we realize that this is disappointing and would like to assure you that your candidacy was considered very carefully. As you know, we receive an overwhelming number of requests to play devil’s advocate every day, and while we would like to accommodate them all, we simply don’t have the resources to do so.

We appreciate the effort and thought that went into your request to play devil’s advocate. Please know that your candidacy received serious, thorough consideration. For this reason, we will be unable to consider any appeals to our decision.

Our records indicate that you have requested to play devil’s advocate for either “just a second here” or “just a minute here” over fourteen times in the last financial quarter. While we appreciate your enthusiasm, priority must be given to those who have not yet played the position. We would like to commend you for the excellent work you have done in the past year arguing for positions you have no real interest or stake in promoting, including:

  • Affirmative Action: Who’s the Real Minority Here?
  • Maybe Men Score Better In Math For A Reason
  • Well, They Don’t Have To Live Here
  • I Think You’re Taking This Too Personally
  • Would It Be So Bad If They Did Die?
  • If You Could Just Try To See It Objectively, Like Me

It is our hope that future holders of the devil’s advocate position will be able to carry on your legacy: smiling as they argue for positions they only half-believe themselves with people who are attempting to discuss something sincerely and in good faith.

We wish you the best of luck in your ensuing conversation and have every confidence in your ability to find something to talk about. We now consider this matter closed.

All best,
Devil’s Advocacy Group

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