We read, with interest, your coverage of President Barack Obama's speech in Tucson, and agree wholeheartedly with his call for unity in wake of the Arizona tragedy.
Recent threats — both realized and planned — of bodily harm to our nation’s public servants are evidence that our nation is in turmoil. Obama’s suggestion to “expand our moral imaginations” and “sharpen our instincts for empathy” couldn’t be more apt and constructive.
And, fortunately for our state, it is an approach facilitated by Humanities Washington and its partner organizations in the Olympia area such as the Washington State Library, The Evergreen State College, and the Squaxin Island Museum, to name a few. Humanities Washington, as the state’s flagship organization for the humanities, plays a critical role in addressing the immediate and growing crisis in our state concerning cultural and civic identity and understanding, and our ability to work together to shape our future. In short, we are addressing the crisis of civility.
By presenting and supporting programs that promote education, critical and creative thinking, and productive discussions, we bring people together to learn more about each other and the varied backgrounds and perspectives that shape individual viewpoints.
In a visit to Olympia just last year, National Endowment for the Humanities Chairman Jim Leach encouraged communities to work harder to find common ground.
Let’s move forward together.
Our website (www.humanities.org) includes a calendar of upcoming events and more information. We hope to see readers at a Humanities Washington-supported program in the near future.