Psychologist Dr. Jonathan Haidt developed the Moral Foundations Theory in conjunction with assistant professor of psychology Jesse Graham a number of years ago after studying individuals from diverse backgrounds who held a wide range of convictions. In this theory, they propose that liberals and conservatives hold to different moral foundations based on their values.
The five moral foundations they lay out are:
- Loyalty / betrayal
- Sanctity / degradation
- Authority / subversion
- Liberty / oppression
On "The Glenn Beck Radio Program" today, Glenn Beck gives an overview of these foundations with the goal of bridging the language gap that often seems insurmountable between liberals and conservatives.
He explained that, according to Haidt's research, conservatives hold to all five moral foundations, but liberals only hold to the last two (care/harm and liberty/oppression).
He noted that if we hope to calm any of the division in America, we would benefit greatly from learning to speak the language that resonates with people with whom we disagree politically while continuing to hold fast to our values.