Daily Resource Highlight - 10/11/2021

Posted by on October 10, 2021 at 9:31 PM

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

October 5, 2021 - The Best Weapon Against COVID is Trust…

We (the Bridge Alliance) rarely talk about COVID anymore, either in this newsletter, on social media, or elsewhere. That wasn’t a conscious decision on our part, and it certainly doesn’t mean that we believe we’re “past it.” Maybe it’s because we don’t see ourselves as experts on the topic.

Regardless of the reason, I’m jumping back into the fray today. And that’s in part because we are big believers in the power of trust, which the National Civic League suggests is key to combating COVID. More specifically, studies show a positive correlation between great public trust, equity, and social capital and fewer COVID deaths.

I’m not naive enough to believe that Americans are suddenly going to trust each other. But building trust within our communities feels achievable. For instance, Essential Partners published a guide to discussing the return to in-person learning, which emphasizes giving each community member the opportunity to speak their truth, including their desires and concerns. 

I would also add the need to validate those desires and concerns, even when they’re in tension with our own. There are strong partisan divides in how we perceive the risks of COVID. As that article from AllSides makes clear, though, many of us -- on both “sides” -- struggle to accurately understand COVID. This suggests, to me, that a bit of humility could go a long way toward building the trust we need to get on the other side of this pandemic.

October 7, 2021 - Breaking Through the Noise with Your Help

If you’re a Twitter user, you know that the Twitterverse is fertile ground for misinformation and partisanship. As Reconsider Media explains in their recent podcast “Volume Bias,” short, pithy talking points spread much more easily than nuanced analysis. Twitter with its 280 character limit takes this dynamic to its extreme. 

So, how can we break through with facts and honest debate? Part of the solution is to elevate and support worthy leaders. Everyday Democracy is doing that with its Leadership Awards, which will provide $15,000 in grants to organizations and individuals promoting racial equity. If you know somebody who fits the bill, be sure to nominate them. All nominations are due by the end of October

Another way is to read / share content from a civic-minded news source, such as The Fulcrum or Independent Voter News, which both regularly post relatively short, easy to digest articles. And if you want to share your own thoughts, you’re in luck! The Fulcrum has recently rebranded to embrace a wide array of content in celebration of the American Spirit. Learn how you can contribute by visiting this page.

Finally, it’s important to acknowledge that mainstream media is valuable if given proper scrutiny, which can be accomplished with the help of several different Bridge Alliance member organizations. The FlipSide takes snippets from a variety of credible sources to provide reactions from the “left” and “right” to top news stories. AllSides provides links to articles from the “Left,” “Right,” and “Center” to give their users a similar overview. And The Factual uses machine learning to grade the credibility of stories along several parameters.

Between all of these tools and resources, we are well on our way to understanding each other and supporting each other as we look to build a more perfect union.