Civility and Free Expression: A Conversation about Gun Violence

  

Purpose

 Civility across the nation seems to be lacking in both political discourse and our daily lives.  Is it possible for us to freely share our ideas on contentious issues and remain civil with one another?  We invited citizens to participate in conversations to explore the issue of gun violence from a local perspective and think about the role civility plays in our democracy. 

 

Program

Click here for the Program Agenda.

Click here for a WZZM13 Story on the event.

Click here for Grand Haven Tribune Article on the event. 


You can view portions of Civility and Free Expression: A Conversation about Gun Violence by clicking on the appropriate link below.

Welcome and Overview
Civil Discussion in an Uncivilized World
Panel Introductions
Panel Discussion
Panel Questions and Responses
Introduction to Civil Discussions
Table Conversations
Recommendations

 

Initial Meeting Results

Click here for an unabridged aggregation of the small group recommendations made during the Community Conversation on March 21, 2013.  Participants were instructed to develop a list of recommendations without the need for consensus.  Once the list was complete, each participant was given one gold and one silver sticker to indicate their first and second preferences, respectively.   The average table size was five participants.

 

About Us 

 

This project is co-sponsored by the The League of Women Voters, Loutit District Public Library, and the Michigan Center for Civic Education. This program is part of Civility and Free Expression in a Constitutional Democracy—A National Dialogue, funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and is conducted in partnership with the American Bar Association Division for Public Education.

More information on this program and resources are available here.

 

Resources

The National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD) website includes a compilation of some of the best resources for dialogue and deliberation programs to address the myriad social and political issues surfaced by the Newtown shooting.

The links provided on their site are listed below.

How Can We Stop Mass Shootings in Our Communities? (National Issues Forum Issue Advisory)

On February 1, 2013, National Issues Forums Institute (NIFI) released an Issue Advisory that contains materials that communities might wish to use in deliberating over the issues raised by the tragic events in Newtown, Connecticut in December 2012.
View PDF

Responding to the Newtown Tragedy: What parents and educators can do to make schools safer

How should schools and communities respond to the Newtown tragedy? The National School Public Relations Association published a guide for discussion and action on school safety and other issues raised by the events in Newtown.
Visit site http://ncdd.org/rc/item/7352

Addressing Mental Health Care: A Handbook for Discussion & Deliberation

This issue guide was created in 2007 by Kansas State University’s Institute for Civic Discourse and Democracy (ICDD) in association with the National Association of Mental Illness (Kansas). David Proctor, ICDD director, has made this issue guide available for anyone who is interested in using it to deliberate about mental illness and public policy. The 16-page guide, titled Addressing Mental Health Care: a handbook for discussion & deliberation, presents three possible approaches for deliberation
Visit site

Dealing with Deeply Held Concerns and Other Challenges to Public Engagement Processes

The Institute for Local Government’s Public Engagement Program offers a draft (as of Jan 2013) 7-page document to help local officials design and prepare for public engagement processes that are effective, responsive and civil – even when participants hold very strong views.
View PDF 

Confronting Violence in Our Communities: A Guide for Involving Citizens in Public Dialogue & Problem Solving

The purpose of this 4-session discussion guide, produced in 1994 by Everyday Democracy (then the Study Circles Resource Center), is to help you run a series of small-group dialogues that will help participants consider what they can do to prevent crime and violence in their homes, schools and neighborhoods.
Visit site 

Public Conversations Project resources

The Public Conversations Project has developed many high-quality materials to help groups engage in dialogue about heated issues.

Constructive Conversations about Challenging Times: A Guide to Community Dialogue

Tips for Making a Hard Conversation Work  

 

If you have any questions or need more information, contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

 

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This program is part of Civility and Free Expression in a Constitutional Democracy—A National Dialogue, funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and is conducted in partnership with the American Bar Association Division for Public Education. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Bar Association, or any of its program partners.