TEDxMileHigh will host an event Thursday designed to teach guests how to talk about generally-polarizing subjects in an effective and respectful way.
Attendees will hear from Theo Wilson, a local slam poet and social justice speaker known for his viral video where he went undercover as a white supremacist, and Lauran Alredge and Caitlin Quattromani, friends who have spoken out about how to maintain a friendship with opposing political views.
“It’s going to be a bit of a happy hour,” said Cate Croft, TEDxMileHigh Design and Adventures Director. “We’ll dive into how to have hard conversations. How to set intentions, how to ask powerful questions and how to check in to make sure you’re also listening and seeking to understand, not just arguing your point. Not just [there to] win a fight.”
Attendees, she said, will discuss a number of topics, like the state of the two-party system, and what it means to be American.
Thursday’s “Bridging The Gap” function is part of TEDxMileHigh’s Adventures initiative, an always-free program Croft describes as “grown-up field trips.” The events are designed to connect past speakers with audience members as an extension of the organization’s larger conferences.
“I think that the past election has brought a lot of issues to the surface that were there already, but it’s really just amplified them and made these kinds of conversations much more contentious,” Croft said. “These are valuable, important skills and attitudes to have but there’s a unique and special need [in] that people are wanting to explore this now, more than they have in the past.”
While TEDxMileHigh is a little over seven-years-old now, the Adventures program started about two years ago.
The events are always free, Croft said, in order to keep them “super open and accessible.” She expects around 70 to 75 people to attend this week’s Adventure. You can RSVP here.
“Bridging The Gap” will occur on Thursday, September 7 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Comal Heritage Food Incubator, 3455 Ringsby Court, #105, Denver.