Reflections from the Chair 3/22


Let’s shorten the distance between us.

“We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.” Abraham Lincoln

Last month when I asked you to tell us what is on your mind, a series of coincidences began.  One of you said we need to find a way to be able to talk to each other again.  On February 23rd, I attended one of Cathy McMorris Rodgers local events.  When asked, “How do we earn back trust?”  She responded with, “You start by listening.” 

If both parties are listening, with respect and open minds, it just might be a good starting point. But we all know from encounters within our own families or social sphere, that is often not enough. We hesitate to speak to those who “think differently” or to make a new acquaintance when we don’t know if they are ‘one of them’ or one of us.  As a member of the minority party, it can be a bit intimidating.

Serendipity is a wonderful thing. Our amazing secretary, Marie, had forwarded an email from Braver Angels. Their mission is to “bring Americans together to bridge the partisan divide and strengthen our democratic republic.”  It took me a bit to piece it all together, but I did not need a bell to ring to tell me I needed to start listening.  Braver Angels are offering free workshops on Saturdays in March.  I signed up for the one on March 5th and encourage anyone who is interested find a date that works for you. I can’t speak for you, but my listening skills definitely need some work.

Won’t you join me? Workshop Signup,  IF they are oversubscribed, you may be invited to another possible date. Please email if you were able to attend, perhaps we can schedule a group discussion. There is no charge for these workshops, but you will be encouraged to donate.

To learn more about Braver Angels check out:  Website   Ted Talk


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