I’m not sure whether our political moment really is more polarized than it has been in the past. But boy, does it feel corrosive. Mothers are crying at the prospect of the President might speak to their children. People are sniffing everywhere for hints of racism.
I’ve been wondering quite a bit recently how democratic dialogue is supposed to occur in a situation like this. We can’t talk to each other. How on earth are we supposed to handle self-governance?
Because I think in media, I’ve been craving a documentary project on this topic. I want to hear people of all political stripes address the topic of how we practice democracy when everyone assumes everyone else is acting in bad faith. Here’s how this looks in my head:
It’s a website. A wall of videos, and an assignment: Find a collaborator, someone whose political views contradict your own. You’re given a set of questions that might help foster a productive conversation. You and your collaborator interview each other about this topic – our polarization – and how we fight it. The full video of both interviews is posted. Creative Commons, natch. Anyone who’d like can edit their own version.