Welcome to the Alliance

We are a diverse coalition of 78 respected established organizations committed to revitalizing democratic practice in America.

Since it’s often difficult for any one group to fully capture public attention or broadly popularize solutions, we are banding together to create great impact across three broad areas: civic engagement, governance and policymaking, and campaign and election processes.

 

Be Part of the Solution

Welcome to the Alliance

Have some thoughts, a blog of your own, or something you’ve read that you want to share? Send it to info@bridgealliance.us

The Media’s Role in Shaping Democracy: Is It Helping or Hurting?

The media has long been portrayed as two sides of the same coin – on one side a watchdog to check government powers, and on the other a vehicle for propaganda. In an era where fake news has proliferated online and the lines are blurred between social media rumor and breaking news, clarifying the news media’s role in shaping democracy can be tricky. To get perspective on the topic, icitizen conducted a poll of 2,505 U.S. adults on their feedback. Do they think the media is helping or hurting democracy? After all – civility in American politics has been an increasingly large concern. As pundits and politicians often set the tone for civic discourse, it can be hard to tell whether they provide a service or disservice in the eyes of the public.

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Ads Pitch Unity

“Open your mind. Open your world.” That was the ending line of the now famous Heineken commercial. In it, people from opposite ends of a variety of issues, had come together, built a bar and, at the end of it, had to decide if they wanted to sit down, have a beer and talk to each other. The twist? They didn’t know the person they were working with was “their enemy.” Yes, enemy is a strong word. However, nowadays, more so in the past couple of years, differences of opinions has converted friends, family, co-workers into ‘others.' That’s why Heineken's commercial hit a nerve. The ad went viral within hours. Some praised it, others criticize it for pandering or for giving a platform to ‘dangerous’ ideologies, but all could agree it made an impact. The beer company isn’t the only corporation calling for unity through their ads. Starbuck’s CEO, Howard Schultz, requested civility in our leadership during the 2016 elections. Cadillac told us that despite the division we see every day on tv, there are people across this country carrying each other forward. It’s what we, as a nation, do. Hyatt asked us to understand each other- to look beyond our differences. Microsoft informed us that when the world seems divided, coming together can be a beautiful thing. Jeep showed us that what unites us is stronger than what divides us. We are free to be what we wanted to be. Even a university jumped on this ‘bridging the divide’ bandwagon. The University of Tennessee called for civility in a one minute video. These ads aren’t just a string of coincidences or a sign of advertising firms lacking creativity. These ads are a trend of what society is desperately yearning for.

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New Ways of Working -- Summit Follow Up

Last month, Bridge Alliance held a Bridge Summit adjunct to Earth Day Texas in Dallas. The Summit was to be a physical unifying of our member organizations and a weekend to find new ways of working together aligned with our mission of revitalizing democratic practice and discourse in this nation.

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