On Saturday, October 8 from 9am to 4pm, Wyoming Rising will sponsor a guided, Braver Angels workshop for leaders in our community. The red-blue group format will allow participants to state their views freely and without fear, to engage others with whom they may disagree with honesty and respect, to understand the origins of points of view they may not share, and to look for common ground, where possible. The Braver Angels model of reciprocal group reflection has the greatest impact when participants are thoughtful, motivated, politically diverse, and connected in the community.
This will be the second such workshop held in Wyoming. The first workshop was also in Park County and organized by Wyoming Rising. Held at the Irma Hotel in Cody in June of this year, it had a distinguished group of 15 participants, selected to ensure political balance. They included multiple elected officials at three levels of government, along with leaders from education, health care, and the business community. Here is some of their feedback:
“It’s so rare that I’ve had political conversations that have been both substantive and enjoyable.”
“I learned how a well-asked question can produce an opportunity to listen to another person’s experience.”
“Framing our questions with the spirit of curiosity is far more productive than ‘asking a question’ that is really disguised to make a point.”
“The workshop gives me hope that I can be part of the solution, that opponents can find common ground to build relationships and work together.”
“I realized that there is more common ground between sides than most people expect. Having rational and productive dialogue can go a long way in coming together in a positive way!”
“I can already see opportunities to use what I’ve learned in the workshop to more effectively engage the public and resolve conflict in my job.”
“It was an amazing experience!”
This response triggered multiple requests for a second workshop to reach more leaders in the community. Two moderators trained by Braver Angels will again lead this workshop. It will be held in a beautifully converted sanctuary at the home of Wyoming Rising members David Bryan and Shelly Graham.