Thanksgiving Political Spats: How To Navigate Them, And Tell Us What Happened

November 21, 2016

Thanksgiving political arguments: Do you dread them? Are you bracing for an extra helping of  Trump or Clinton sarcasm? We're here to help, and we'd also like you tell us how it all went down.

David Isay, the founder of StoryCorps, offered some advice to Colorado Matters host Ryan Warner on how to steer these awkward conversations toward something constructive, like this story, I Try To Not Bring Up Politics. Here's some pointers:

  • Listening is critical. Use your Thanksgiving conversation to seek wisdom from family members. Find out what’s important to them and why.
  • Don’t worry about proving someone wrong. Listening isn’t a panacea, but it does offer a ripple of connection with people who think differently than you do.
  • Be honest. Say something if someone hurts you with their words. But ask them, “tell me why you believe that?” Don’t let the conversation fall off a cliff.
  • Take the conversation seriously. Build social capital. It’s human nature to fear people we don’t know. As a country we are not listening to each other.

Once you have Thanksgiving in your rear-view mirror, we'd like you share your experience. You can call 720-358-4029  to leave a voicemail about how the conversations went.

You can also record those Thanksgiving discussions with your smartphone and email the file to news@cpr.org. We may use your experiences on the air and online as we report how Americans are finding common ground after the election.