Ciaran rides solo for a stimulating conversation with Rusty Reno of First Things. Rusty talks about the homogenization of the political elite, and how he sees the electoral college as a bulwark against the power of those with social and economic advantages.
Tab Berg, Inside Sacramento America is binging on outrage because liberals are arrogant elitists recklessly opening our borders and bankrupting the country, while conservatives are hateful bigots bent on destroying the environment and oppressing poor people. Neither statement is true, but both stereotypes feed the outrage addiction that has become the default narrative of public …
Race remains the a volatile point of division in American life. Can we cross the racial divide in politics to heal America?
AlterNet // On a roadside billboard in North Carolina promoting the Cherokee Guns store, beneath the words “The 4 Horsemen Cometh are Idiots” appear American citizens and congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, and Rashida Tlaib, collectively known as “the squad,” whom Trump told to “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.”
By an anonymous Better Angels Member and Trump Supporter Ever since the 2017 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, the word “nationalism” has become connected to domestic terrorism. It is regularly asserted that domestic white nationalist terrorism is the greatest terrorist threat confronting our nation. The New Zealand mosque and El Paso shootings seem to …
The Sheridan Press // SHERIDAN — When it comes to politics, the only thing everyone seems to agree on is that no one can agree on much of anything. Everyone also seems to agree that intractable political conflicts are doing more harm than good.
Jonathan Rauch and Ben Domenech discuss practical ways to decrease online outrage, increase civility despite the political divide, and restore the disappearing institutions that previously bonded American communities.
The Rutland Herald // In a time of increasing political tensions and extreme world views, one Democrat and one Republican from Rutland County are trying to unite their communities in the spirit of respectful conversation.
Writer and host of the Theory of Enchantment Podcast interviews Jonathan Haidt (Better Angels board member and author of The Coddling of the American Mind) about the challenges of free speech on college campuses, the importance of the ‘religious instinct’ in social life, polarizing vs. depolarizing kinds of identity politics, and the social and individual …
Julie Kohler, author of the Washington Post article “How Calls to ‘Love Your Enemies’ Enforce the Status-Quo,” joins Ciaran and John for a back and forth about her own past critiques of Better Angels, the proper place of empathy in political life, and the importance of depolarization to preserving the possibility for political progress in …
April Lawson, Better Angels board member and architect of the Better Angels Debate’s program, sits down with Doug Sprei on the Higher Ed Now podcast (affiliated with the American Council of Trustees and Alumni) to discuss her compelling personal and political journey and Better Angels uniquely uplifting debate program. “It does not feel good to …
The Journal Times // The vast majority of us are neither evil nor stupid, and we can learn from each other and work together for the common good, but only if we see each other as human beings first.
In this special episode of the Better Angels Podcast, writer and philosopher Lexi Hudson interviews David Blankenhorn, founder and president of Better Angels, about the state of polarization in the United States, what makes a strong civil society and his own personal journey through the heat of American division.
Kenosha News // I am a conservative. I am not ashamed of it. In fact, I’m proud of my beliefs. However, it has become difficult to talk about it for fear of being disregarded, rejected or dismissed.
St. Paul Pioneer Press // A week before last month’s presidential debates, when politicians’ rhetoric threatened deepening polarization, a movement to depolarize America called “Better Angels” held its second annual convention. Equal numbers of Republican and Democratic delegates participated, 130 from each side and from every state, June 20 to 23 in St. Louis.
Hawk Newsome, President of Black Lives Matter New York, sits down with Ray Warrick, leader of the Cincinnati Tea Party, to discuss the origins of their movements, their personal stories, the differences between them and the areas their values converge in this singularly American conversation at the Better Angels Convention. June 22nd, Washington University, St. …
The social media landscape may be the Wild West of political conversation. But if we have some basic ground rules, and make an effort to bring our best selves to the discussion, it’s possible to raise the level of our discourse, and maybe provide an example that can start to move the needle—just a little bit—in the larger online conversation.
Better Angels co-founder and program architect Bill Doherty speaks with Kerri Miller of Minnesota Public Radio about Better Angels and the challenge of ‘Depolarizing Within.’ https://www.mprnews.org/story/2019/07/08/how-to-bring-out-the-better-angels-in-your-community
Better Angels president David Blankenhorn discusses with Laura Flanders our belief that there’s still value in talking, and the ways we do it that actually seem to bring people together.
NBC KARE-TV Minneapolis // It’s true we live in polarizing times. How can Republicans and Democrats talk to each other without shutting each other out?
John Wood, Jr. sings Sam Cooke’s A Change is Gonna Come at the Better Angels National Convention
Listen to Ciaran O’Connor and John Wood, Jr. break down the political and racial divides alongside special guest, Chloe Valdary.
The Post-Star // What is clear is that we need that type of civil discourse, the type of discourse that Better Angels is trying to delivery across our communities.
The Federalist // ‘I don’t know at what point we moved from disagreeing with the argument to hating the person, and that scared me. I decided I have to do something,’ says this Better Angels delegate.
Better Angels was born in response to the crisis of polarization—a growing crisis that hampers government, destroys trust, degrades public discussion, fosters isolation, and harms personal relationships.
Pundits and activists on the left and the right are saying we cannot seek understanding with our political opponents without sacrificing our political goals. We disagree.
The Post-Star // Over the past couple weeks, Better Angels held two information programs and one skills workshop at the library. More than 50 turned out for the three meetings. Each person at the meeting was asked why they were there. More than one talked about how the political divide had impacted family relationships.
Ciaran O’Connor and John Wood, Jr. recap their recent journeys across the country discussing depolarization and reconciliation, Ciaran’s interview with Ezra Klein, the values that bind Americans and John’s feelings on Memorial Day.
USA Today // In the Trump age, political polarization in the United States has never been higher. Groups like Better Angels are promoting civility to lower angst.
John Wood, Jr. delivers the keynote speech on day one of the Weave the Social Fabric Project conference, on race and the power of love as a social value to transcend our divides.