Episode 2: Fracturing Society

In the second episode of “True Progress: Polarization,” we continue our exploration of the division affecting all of us. Our experts focus on understanding how polarization impacts our society and its structures. It’s not a pretty picture.

“If you are in a constant state of paralysis because you are in a defensive mindset, then you're never going to learn anything. You're never going to grow. You're never going to go out into the world and build new skills, build new relationships, and take the types of risks that ultimately end up leading to a flourishing life.”
Clay Routledge

“The truth of the matter is that there are lots of policy issues where people can find common ground.”
Ben Klutsey

“We're not trying to obscure difference, we're trying to make it possible to make progress in the face of differences and use them constructively.”
Dan Vallone

Interviewed Experts

Ben Klutsey

Director of Academic Outreach and Director of the Program on Pluralism and Civil Exchange, Mercatus Center

Ilana Redstone

Associate Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Illinois; Co-Director, Mill Institute, University of Austin

Clay Routledge

Vice President of Research and Director of the Human Flourishing Lab, Archbridge Institute

Dan Vallone

Director, More in Common, USA

Tony Woodlief

Senior Executive Vice President, State Policy Network; Author of "I, Citizen: A Blueprint for Reclaiming American Self-Governance"

About the Series

True Progress is a podcast documentary dedicated to investigating the forces that can move our society forward. Our first installment focuses on one of the biggest and most harmful barriers to progress today: polarization. Polarization is something we’ve all heard about and possibly even felt in our everyday relationships. With another presidential election on the horizon and polls showing America’s widening divides, it’s time to take a serious look at how our society became fractured and what we can do, as individuals and collectively, to heal. In conversations with experts, True Progress explores the causes of polarization, its effects on our society, and pathways to solutions.