There is no other way to say it. Extremism is rising as our country grows more polarized. Church shootings. Synagogue desecration. Muslim and Sikh youth harassed. Equally troubling are the countless other injustices that fail to make the headlines. It can feel unsurmountable, but there is hope.
Over two years ago, we launched Tanenbaum’s Combating Extremism campaign to get us talking and listening to one another—and especially to those whose beliefs and ideologies differ from our own. Because that is where the hope lies. In each of us.
This means taking responsibility for what we know—and what we don’t. And it means finding out the real facts.
That’s why our Combating Extremism resources are designed to counter misinformation and/or our lack of information about some of today’s most pressing and complex religion-related issues. So that our conversations are based on accurate, objective facts.
To help you share—and discuss—what you learn from these resources in positive ways, Tanenbaum created a “How To” guide for this installment of Combating Extremism:
• Guidelines for Conducting Open Conversations; and
• Guidelines for Conducting Open Conversations – A Summary
Based on Tanenbaum’s 25 years of work, we know that conversations are critical to bridging divides, which can help prevent individuals from feeling marginalized—a risk factor believed to increase some people’s susceptibility to extremist ideology.
Join us in our efforts to stop hate and Combat Extremism. Let’s get talking!
With an open heart—and open ears,
Joyce S. Dubensky
P.S. Whether you convene a formal conversation, engage in an off-the-cuff discussion with family, friends, or colleagues, or simply review and/or pass along Tanenbaum’s Combating Extremism resources on social media or in person, we encourage you to send an email to [email protected] and let us know. Please include stories that highlight how your ideas or behavior (or those of other participants) shifted, if available, as a result.
P.P.S. When you support Tanenbaum, you help us in the battle for a world where people across beliefs live side by side, free from extremism, persecution and hate.