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You wouldn’t know it from watching the news but respectful dialogues are happening every day, right around the corner.
By Ericka Andersen, The American Conservative, Aug. 14, 2019
It was 7:30am at the National Prayer Breakfast and Republican Senator James Lankford and Democratic Senator Chris Coons sat on opposite sides of a podium on a vast stage at the Washington Hilton hotel in Dupont Circle. Coming off the heels of a vicious news cycle featuring debates about late-term abortion, new sexual assault allegations, and racism, it was refreshing to be in a room dedicated to bipartisan and multicultural unity and prayer.
President Donald Trump took his place to the right of the podium and—after giving a short speech—stood between Lankford and Coons as they laid hands on him to pray for the country. Tweets ceased and cameras flashed, capturing a rare moment of peace over a simple meal of untoasted bagels, cold fruit chunks, carafes of coffee, and quiche.
And really, a cup of coffee is all it takes to begin a conversation with someone across the aisle, pew, or tax bracket. The Prayer Breakfast is symbolic of various national and local efforts to promote bipartisan respect, civility, and understanding. You wouldn’t know it from watching the news, but there is a growing movement of civility-centered groups, organizations, websites, and social circles sprouting up on every corner. ….