Town Hall Tour across America seeks to reimagine politics, catalyze progress
There’s a crisis brewing in American politics, and it can’t be solved by voting alone.
That’s why the Purpose Power team, led by Alicia Bonner Ness, launched the 2019 Purpose Power Town Hall Tour. This spring, the town halls will bring communities together so that they may discover their shared vision for the future and co-design a plan for progress.
Starting in March, Purpose Power will host town halls in Connecticut, New York, Washington D.C., Virginia and Tennessee, in partnership with organizations working at the intersection of democracy reform and social justice. Tickets will be available early this spring.
The tour comes at a critical point in American politics: First, 2019 is the only year until 2023 where Americans won’t be distracted by elections; it’s a time for communities to envision what they want and have time to make it a reality.
Second, the negative effects of social media on American politics — and people’s relationships with one another — are becoming more apparent. Technology can force people into a values vacuum and encourage them to interact with those they already know share their same ideas. In-person conversations are necessary if Americans hope to reintegrate humanity in the pursuit of progress, said Alicia Bonner Ness, author of “Purpose Power.”
“The result of spending more time on social media and less time interacting with each other is that we can no longer access, hear or civilly engage with important viewpoints that differ from our own,” Ness said.
On the 2016 Hillary Clinton campaign, where Ness worked as a field organizer in Florida, she saw how Americans’ failure to communicate is at the heart of the country’s political dysfunction. If Americans are to reimagine the political landscape, she believes they must work together.
“Changing America’s future from one of despair to one of hope will require more than incremental changes in strategy or investment,” Ness said. “To make tomorrow look different from today, we must stop doing what we’ve always done to stop getting what we’ve always gotten.”
Press contact: Ansley Pentz, Content Strategist at Heptagon Productions