Aired 17 November 2020 – 5:00 PM EDT
An Interview With Author and Mediation Expert Mark Gerzon
The ReUnited States of America
At the most politically contentious time since the Civil War, can you imagine what it would take to “reunite America”? You can’t? Well our guest this week, Mark Gerzon, can. He has written a book called the Reunited States of America, and his life work for the past half-century has been bringing all sides together in fruitful conversation.
Mark Gerzon is the president of Mediators Foundation and is one of the key architects of the field of global leadership and an experienced facilitator in high-conflict zones. He has advised a wide variety of organizations including the US Congress, multinational corporations, and UNDP. The author of numerous books, including Leading Through Conflict and Global Citizens, his most recent book is The Reunited States of America: How We Can Bridge the Partisan Divide.
Most people prefer solving problems than bipartisan bickering
Concerned about the increasing polarization in American communities, Mark has spent the last two decades working on the ideological frontier between Left and Right. He co-designed and served as head facilitator for the US Bipartisan Congressional Retreats in the late 1990s, and has spent the following years participating in a wide variety of efforts to deepen dialogue across the political spectrum. He is currently developing with his colleagues a multi-pronged strategy to build a transpartisan movement in the United States.
Studies have shown that more than two thirds of Americans would prefer solving problems together to sowing more divisiveness and discord. Our current electoral system is dependent on two forces – first, the vested interests that donate the huge sums of money to finance the campaigns; second, the “true-believer” voters who provide the energy on the ground as the voting blocs who put the candidates over the top. Thanks to new applications of technology to identify “solution voters”, we now have an opportunity to access and activate this new “silent majority”.
Since we all want a world to work for all, we need to come together
So, can the majority of us work together to move forward the political agenda that the vast majority of us want – election integrity, end to gerrymandering, money out of politics, working together to solve problems instead of engaging in the lose-lose state of war that has marred politics for the past two generations? To find out, please listen in.
To find out more about Mark Gerzon’s work and the Reunited States Project, please go here.