Authors:

Lorelei Kelly, Byron Bland, Floyd Thompkins, Duncan Morrow

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There comes a time when political leaders and ordinary citizens alike must choose to affirm and reinforce the institutions that make a democratic nation possible. The last four years have taught us that we cannot take for granted that our democratic processes will lead to compromise and reciprocity.

We are participants in an ongoing conversation about peace building among academics, community activists and international scholars who have studied intractable political conflicts and helped to develop strategies for overcoming political divisions. Our discussions have drawn heavily on our experiences in Northern Ireland and Israel-Palestine and on our engagement in struggles to overcome racial injustice, wealth inequality and discriminatory policing here in the United States.

We believe the lessons we have learned offer important insights into how we could overcome the deep polarization poisoning American politics.

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