Speakers at the inaugural NaplesNEXT ideas festival discussed promoting civil discourse in a polarized society.

March 18, 2019

“How can we repair a divided nation?

This is a question we discussed in our March 2018 story called Talk to Me … Please and in a subsequent event with WGCU. The inaugural NaplesNEXT Ideas Festival on Monday also took on this perplexing subject, with speakers Arthur C. Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute, and Penn State professors Samuel Richards and Laurie Mulvey.

Brooks, author of the book Love Your Enemies, described a culture of outrage that has consumed the nation to the point where now one in six Americans has stopped talking to a close friend or family member due to disagreements in politics. The issue is contempt. It’s not just disagreeing with someone, but thinking of them as lesser because of that disagreement. He gave three ways that anyone can take a step toward civility and away from discord.”

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