My friend Larisa over at Austere Magazine pens a great read on how to tune out the barrage of news and content and shouting matches that fill up the modern discourse in 2016. The background context to this piece is the 2016 Texas Tribune Festival, which she and I both attended. The Festival’s panels covered contentious topics such as police brutality, campus carry, Donald Trump, and the state of Black America in 2016. Needless to say, strong personalities clashed with equally strong personalities from the opposing ideological stance. Yet, as Larisa writes:

Tune out the talking heads. Distance yourself from the barrage of 24/7 coverage.  Understand that genuine understanding doesn’t come neatly packaged and presented from experts, and it’s seldom reached through a 140-character exchange on Twitter. In an environment short on time, our minds are so packed with retorts to defend our own stances that genuine listening is a rarity. Coming to the table with what we’ve identified as the “others” –the tough work– has to happen on a grassroots level, within families, among friends and co-workers, in small discussion groups, at community meetings.

Give the whole thing a read.

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