Better Angels

A Separate Peace

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 …

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Depolarization and Race

Race remains the a volatile point of division in American life. Can we cross the racial divide in politics to heal America?

How to bring divided Americans together and save our democracy

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.”

Dispatch: Economic Nationalism Can Help Fight Social Breakdown

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 …

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Locals attend ‘Better Angels’ conference

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.

A Discussion with Jonathan Haidt

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 …

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To Depolarize or Not to Depolarize with Julie Kohler

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 …

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April Lawson: Leading Better Angels Debates

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 …

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Harry C. Boyte: “We the People” – meeting polarization and other challenges

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.

In Conversation: Black Lives Matter and the Tea Party

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. …

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About the Better Angels Social Media Pledge

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 2019 Platform

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.

Political divide has hit home for many

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.