Interns from The Heritage Foundation and Emerging Leaders from The Gloucester Institute discuss how millennials can help mend social divides in the country. (Photo: Charlie Koenig/The Gazette-Journal)

On Saturday, interns from The Heritage Foundation Young Leaders Program joined members of the Emerging Leaders program at The Gloucester Institute, an organization dedicated to fostering solution-oriented dialogue to resolve issues in the African-American community, for an event entitled “Impacting Civil Society: A Conversation about Race and Racism.”

Participants heard from Dr. Carl Ellis, board member of The Gloucester Institute and Provost Professor of Theology and Culture at Reformed Theological Seminary, who gave a talk about race and racism. “If this country has any chance of surviving, it’s through folks like you,” Dr. Ellis told the attendees.

Heritage interns and Gloucester Emerging Leaders shared their thoughts on race and other issues in small groups and discussed what millennials can do to bridge the national divide in our society. They left the event eager to continue the dialogue in order to heal some of the deep divisions in American culture. You can read more about the event on The Daily Signal here.

Do you think the divide in American culture is beginning to narrow, or is it wider than ever?

Comments (27)

Tracy Warren - March 1, 2019

The race divide is wider than ever in the general population. Oh, it may appear that all is well on the surface, but stronger tensions are simmering just below the surface in the black community.

Barack and Michelle Obama did not help race relations and racial hucksters like Sharpton and Ellison have not helped either. They must have the divide to continue to prosper.

Joe Thornton - March 1, 2019

Wider than ever. The Blacks have just about exhausted their strong arm of slavery to promote white guilt in extorting rewards and preferential treatment. Acceptance of responsibility is not the norm.
Lack of civility, reason, and party prejudice are dividing this Country.

Carole Aus - March 1, 2019

It is wider than ever since the Democratic Party has gone Communist and the vast majority of teachers and professors have moved in that direction as well. Obama was successful in his “transformation of America.”

Randy Hagood - March 1, 2019

I think the division in our people has originated with stupid ass bleeding hearts in office. They daily widen the gap between races and religions. Until we fire them and ship them back to their country of origin, this country is doomed and guaranteed to fail. People are blinded by their ignorance!!!!

John Struod - March 1, 2019

At 74 years old, I think our Nation is moredivided due to efforts to make our business person president look back. After two years of constant harassment, no business person will run leaving elective office to the “elite” of our Nation – politicians who know other career.

Steele Osborn - March 1, 2019

What is “narrowing” is the American work ethic. too many young people are unwilling to work hard, or sometimes not to work at all.
I believe this is due to our great affluence since WWII.
Foreigners now dominate the scientists and the doctors, and many other fields.

J Lucas - March 1, 2019

Yes, the cultural divide in America continues to grow because the media and the Democrats encourage illegal immigration and pursue false racism, even where no racism exists.
Democrats do not support the ideals and morals that made America wonderful.
We need to stop encouraging illegal immigrants with “free” stuff: Medicare, Housing, Food Stamps, Education; what other county rewards illegal immigrants in the same fashion?

Paul Wolf - March 1, 2019

Identity politics has unquestionably widened the gap. The divide began to widen during the Obama administration and continues unabated. With that being said, I think that it’s far more observable in those recently indoctrinated in the so-called education institutions. I don’t think it’s nearly as prevalent in older Americans. A complete reversal of times past. Leftism needs and thus creates victims.

Albert Dykes - March 2, 2019

The Left is aggressively working to increase racial division in this country!

Gail - March 2, 2019

I really enjoy having an open conversation with people of color. I usually ask them what can you and I do to make the world a better place. I’ve been very blessed with the responses. Most everyone is willing to talk and you are correct many are older. In a lot of cases God comes up in the conversation as part of the solution. A younger man said we need to show love to one another he then hugged me. I truly appreciate the sports players who are trying to help society come together. I believe regardless of race, families have to come first and father’s need to be a big part of raising their children. I would really appreciate more input from Heritage Foundation as to what is at the root of this issue. I wasn’t raised prejudice and am truly not sure how to change something I don’t know what are the issues. I loved the story at the Jay A. Parker lecture when the gentleman told the story about his father’s barn being burned by three white men and his father told him those weren’t three white men they were three men who were making a back choice in what they were doing. With prayers and love we can start to make a difference. Thank you for all you do. Gail

Ernest Wilson - March 2, 2019

The gap has grown wider. There is much confusion over defining racism. The country rejected use of government to restrict or oppress on the basis of skin color and ethnicity and correctly so. Attempts to eliminate standards in society and convince people that all cultures are equally correct cannot succeed. If we are to remain a single cohesive community we must agree on a set of common standards. We seem to be failing to do so in our efforts to remove all vestiges of discrimination. Is it still acceptable to oppose destructive behavior?

Morris Steen - March 2, 2019

Tell me what this means, “An Honest Conversation About Race”. Not a single one of us can do anything about our race, not that people haven’t tried through the years. It is just too convenient to blame the ills of society on race, and that is what people have done since biblical times. Arabs and Jews have been at odds since before recorded history, and yet they are cousins. Greeks and Turks, almost the same. I don’t know what “An Honest Conversation About Race” is supposed to look like nor what outcome is expected from a conversation of this manner. Is is about reparations, or opportunity, or equality, or status, or bigotry, or respect, or subjugation, or SAT scores, or outcomes, or wealth, or work ethic, or unemployment, or character, or morality, or education, or what is in the hearts and minds of mankind? We have had this conversation for the past 200 years in America (and around the world). America offers it citizens the greatest opportunity ever experienced in the history of the world and EVERY immigrant (legal or illegal), knows it. Let’s give this topic a break and get on with lowering our taxes and ridding ourselves of regulations that stifle our economy and limit individual opportunity.

Richard Dawson - March 2, 2019

It is getting wider than ever. Tolerance is not allowed. Hate and anger is running a muck thoughout our halls of government on a daily basis. The left cannot stand the fact that they lost lost to Trump in 2016 and they are out to destroy him any way they can. This spills over into everyone’s living room through the TV news where the words “racist” and “racism” are used freely to describe most everyone. Yes, the gab is widening!!

M. Keating - March 2, 2019

In many ways the division is wider in the general population with regard to identity politics, but I believe there is a greater divide between people of faith and people who only believe in themselves and instant gratification.

Mrs. Phyllis Eix - March 2, 2019

Social media likes to hype the divide, but, to me, the divide is narrowing gradually through the efforts of the faithful. Praise God.

C.F. Hogan - March 2, 2019

I think the former administration and the Democrats has set us back 20 years. They are using it as a ploy to get us from noticing what they are really doing.

Jim Barrett - March 2, 2019

Unfortunately the Democrats (the party of the KKK and Jim Crow Laws) continue to deny their heritage and throw race constantly into the face of anyone who disagrees with them. It does not take much to be called a “racist” in today’s culture which is actually a way to sensor opposition thought. I wish the best for young people dealing with this issue – but I’m afraid the “over the top” hyperbole will be with us for ever more.

Tim Beck - March 2, 2019

Identity politics is a cancer. It is a rejection of one of our country’s key mottos – e pluribus unum – from many one. We need to continue to push for the return of civics education, assimilation of immigrants, and the passage of English as being the official, and only, language of the US government..

Kathy Dudley - March 2, 2019

I blame the divide solely on the media, the Democrats and Hollywood and people in that circle like Al Sharpden, Farakan, Jussie Smollett, etc., etc., etc. They are the elephant in the room and until their voices are toned down racial tensions will continue.

Clyde A. Cullings - March 2, 2019

I believe that our american culture is on a downhill slide where it appears that social norms were cast aside in favor of anything is acceptable as long as the individual believes it. Boys are competing as girls, LGBT has obliterated the differences, God has been removed from public education, and permissiveness prevails. It feels like end times is fast approaching! The liberals want more giveaways and accountability to the government.!

Joanne Kensinger - March 2, 2019

Fewer and fewer extremists exist and spew divisionism. Gradually reasonable Americans of all skin colors are becoming the mainstream. God’s will be done.

Howard Ainsworth - March 2, 2019

We live in Waco, TX, and it is certainly a integrated city of many races and ethnic peoples. We go to a church that is the same way. Our community leaders, and school leaders are also diverse. We talk to each other without fear of condemnation.

Henry J. Vance - March 2, 2019

I think that racism is declining when I watch the communication between the races. I abhor the way we keep trying to promote racism by calling citizens African-americans, asian-americans, latin-americans – all citizens are Americans and should be identified as such. Using language to separate us is unfair and detrimental to the nation.

Misanthrope Curmudgeon - March 2, 2019

Honest conversation about racism might be beneficial, but if you keep picking the scab on a wound the longer it takes to heal and the more likely it will leave a scar that may never go away!

William Olson - March 3, 2019

It’s worse because the “mediacrats” promote divisions in society. The media needs controversy to sell news, and the democrats (liberals) need unrest to sell their brand. They both only care about what is good for them, not what is good for society.

Frank Broadrick - March 4, 2019

I believe the divide among desperate groups is an illusion. With the help of mainstream media progressives push a narrative of conflict and discontent. Remember, there is money to be made from agitating people into action. What I actually see are people of all stripes going about their business, trying to get ahead and get along with their neighbor. Don’t be fooled by the politicians trying to create a problem looking for a solution, it’s how they hold power over our lives. We need them to serve us not rule us. Listen to candidates in the upcoming 2020 election distinguish between what they want to do for us vs. what they want to do to us.

Eric HINZ - March 6, 2019

FYI! All of us have a conversation on race, every day.

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