Increasingly, Americans are struggling to come to the table for civil debate around important issues. Mistrust and fear run rampant, and we are exceedingly quick to villainize the “other.” When it comes to life-threatening issues like school safety, constituents are less and less hopeful that leaders will do their job in a manner that honors the will of the people they represent.

I recently joined a conversation that gave me a front row seat to my own internal misgivings around the dwindling possibilities for civil conversation. I came away humbled — and hopeful.

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