Here's Oppenheimer's write-up in The New York Times. He begins:
The ancient Greek symposium, which combined drinking with elevated discussion, was often held in a private house; at Parisian salons, conversation frequently took place in the bedroom. Once upon a time, intellectuals knew they could do their best thinking at home, not in a public venue, and that debate would be helped along by food and drink.But Oppenheimer was actually not hoping for vigorous, deep debate. He imagined home (and drink) creating an atmosphere of warmth and affinity:
It was my hope, of course, that Mr. Brown might witness a sane, functional, happy family in a bourgeois home, and consider it as another piece of evidence, something more for reason to operate on.Savage himself thought the home setting made him to "solicitous and considerate" — since it was his home, and he was therefore the host. And it's not surprising that Brown didn't cave on his principles when confronted with the reality of gay partnership in a nice home. So that was that.
By the way, Savage's newest podcast, #304 (downloadable in the sidebar here), begins with a discussion of the shooting at the Family Research Center, which he condemns while standing by the characterization of the FRC as a "hate group." In the course of making the argument — too bad there's no transcript — he quotes this quote:
"I believe that marriage is the union between a man and a woman. Now, for me as a Christian — for me — for me as a Christian, it is also a sacred union. God’s in the mix...."He mocks that, but says that's not enough to count as hate. He then stuns us with the revelation that the speaker of the quote is...