With hyper-partisanship escalating between Democrats and Republicans, the Sacramento chapter of “Better Angels” is bringing the two sides together this weekend in hopes of bridging the political divide.
Organizers say the invitation-only gathering is a unique effort to bridge a growing rift in political discourse.
“People really flock to this sort of event,” said moderator Steve Sphar. “They want to come and say, 'look, is there something we can do to get back to remembering each other are human beings first and then they’re also a Republican or Democrat.'”
Eric Wiesenthal is a liberal who hopes to connect with those he calls "his conservative brothers and sisters."
“I’m hoping that they will feel not only that they’ve been listened to but that there’s a genuine connection,” Wiesenthal explained. “That we all have common concerns, goals and desires.”
Dennis Keahey is a conservative hoping to gain practical skills for communicating across political differences.
“I want to learn,” said Keahey. “I want to be able to understand and gather information so when I do talk to people I don’t sound like a broken record and I’m spewing stuff that I read on the internet.”
Better Angels was organized after the 2016 election as a national citizens' movement to reduce political polarization in the U.S.