Season of Silly continues: “Civility Institute” to open in AZ

Posted by: ST on February 21, 2011 at 1:20 pm

Via the NYT:

The University of Arizona — whose Tucson campus President Obama used for his nationwide address on civility after the shooting of Representative Gabrielle Giffords last month — will announce on Monday that it is establishing an institute to promote compromise among opposing political parties and views, the organization’s director said on Sunday.

The honorary chairmen of the foundation, to be called the National Institute for Civil Discourse, will be President Bill Clinton and President George H. W. Bush, said the director, Brint Milward, who also leads the university’s School of Government and Public Policy.

Dr. Milward said the institute would focus on political disagreements “from the grass roots all the way to the top.”

“In a great democracy, it’s important for people to hold fast to principles, but at the same time to understand where they might be able to compromise,” he said.

The idea for the institute, he said, grew out of the national conversation that began in January after the shootings in Tucson that killed six people and injured 13 others, including Ms. Giffords, a Democrat who represented the Tucson area in Congress. Politicians and pundits raised questions and criticisms about the nation’s political discourse, with many calling for calmer rhetoric while pointing out commentary they considered incendiary.

[…]

One portion of the speech was particularly inspiring for Fred DuVal, vice chairman of the Arizona Board of Regents, who came up with the idea for the institute while listening to the president’s address.

Mr. Obama, speaking of Christina-Taylor Green, 9, the youngest victim of the shooting, said he wanted an American democracy as “good as Christina imagined it.”

Mr. DuVal, who was a friend of Ms. Giffords’s and was a co-chairman of her finance committee, said he hoped the institute would be one way the nation could work toward such a goal. One of the first steps, he said, would be to attempt defining “best practices and corrosive practices.”

“How do we nurture robustness on one hand and not in any way chill speech, and keep it in bounds that are not destructive to democracy?” he said. “Will it change the nature of dialogue? That will be a tall order.”

Hmmm. I’m thinking that a much better, more fitting place to start such an institute would be, say, Wisconsin or … DC? Nah, that would make too much sense and put too much of the focus on from where the majority of hateful, “old tone” rhetoric comes: The left, starting with the high and mighty movers and shakers like left wing financier and hater of conservatives George Soros. Won’t happen, though, because it works out much better for the left to keep the myth alive that the attempted murder of Rep. Giffords was the result of “violent right wing rhetoric”, so naturally America needs a “civility institute” near the scene of the crime.

In much happier news, Giffords continues to make good progress in her recovery:

HOUSTON – U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords continues to show progress in her recovery at a Houston rehabilitation hospital.

KGUN9 reports that Tucson Rabbi Stephanie Aaron just returned from visiting the congresswoman in Texas and says Giffords chanted prayers with her and even sang the nine minute folk rock classic, Don McLean’s, “American Pie.”

“So Mark and his daughters were singing with her, singing “American Pie” and Gabby was singing with it,” Aaron said. “Honestly, she knew more of the words then they did and she was singing it, so it’s very wonderful.”

Aaron said they sang about three verses of the lengthy song.

Awesome.

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17 Responses to “Season of Silly continues: “Civility Institute” to open in AZ”

Comments

  1. Carlos says:

    And when they have established the curtailment of speech on conservatives, even “moderates” (another name for people too spineless to have real convictions), they will create an “education” series that can be spoon-fed to first and second graders so their re-education can be started as soon as the state can get children away from their parents! How great is that?

    And just what do we “compromise” on? Abortion? Gun possession? Free Speech? Free assembly? How ’bout freedom from of religion? The right of states to protect themselves from invasion if the feds won’t enforce their own laws?

    The list is nearly endless. Doesn’t really matter, though, because they will be able to mind-warp a generation of children into blindly surrendering any principals their parents tried to instill in the holy name of “compromise”.

    All it seems to me is this idea is one of the more sinister that’s come down the statist road in a long time.

  2. Iva Biggin says:

    It may not sound as civil as those paragons of virtue marching in WI but Bush, Clinton and that current stink pickle in the white house can choke on each others private parts.

  3. A Change I Can't Believe In says:

    Bye-bye Miss American Pie indeed…..

  4. Sefton says:

    “In a great democracy, it’s important for people to hold fast to principles, but at the same time to understand where they might be able to compromise,” Dr. Milward said.

    Maybe it’s just me, but this statement makes no sense. How does one compromise their principles?

    Politicians and pundits raised questions and criticisms about the nation’s political discourse, with many calling for calmer rhetoric while pointing out commentary they considered incendiary.

    And the incendiary rhetoric and commentary was coming from the Left.

    Carlos said: All it seems to me is this idea is one of the more sinister that’s come down the statist road in a long time.

    Exactly.

  5. Carlos says:

    Such rhetoric is OK (and demanded) for thee, but not for me, says Schumer, Obhammud and such.

    What a bunch of “Animal Farm” pigs.

  6. deidre says:

    What Carlos said,…

  7. Someone in this class should confront these lecturing Leftists about their own “civility,” or should I say, their lack thereof (as we’re seeing in Wisconsin).

  8. eaglewingz08 says:

    Seems to me that the ‘civility institute’ should be opened in the Wisconsin State Capitol, and the students who should be dragooned into attending should be the teachers and other union thugs venting their verbal diarrhea and hate speech against the governor and republicans.

  9. RM says:

    The university did put on a massive campaign rally
    memorial service last month. A horrible crime should not be used for political purposes.

  10. Anonna says:

    Funded by students’ tuition? Citizens’ tax money? Foundations?

    I worked once for a b.s. institute like this one. Just money for roundtables in pricey locations, fancy food, and such to create publications that one one read.

  11. your mama says:

    Where was all this talk about civility when the tea party came about?
    Oh that’s right, they were called racist and astroturf.Now they want civility. Please!

  12. Old Goat says:

    The left keeps talking about bipartisanship, but what that means is that the right capitulates on their principles and agree with the left … like McCain does.

    The political divide is still growing wider, and that is because the core principles on both sides are such that there can be very little middle ground. The state of the world is such that compromise won’t cut it.

    Eventually things calm down, but only after war has extinguished the flames of passion. I think we are in for a very rough ride, and Obama is clearly not a leader who can handle it.

    When he was elected far too many turned a blind eye toward the harm he would do as POTUS. McCain wasn’t a good choice either, but I bet there are plenty who wish they could change their vote.

  13. Steve Skubinna says:

    Who is this Clinton person, this new found champion of civility?

    I recall somebody with a similar name blaming the OKC bombing on Rush Limbaugh, Newt Gingrich, and a largely nonexistent “militia movement.”

    Likewise, there was some guy named Clinton who branded Monica Lewinsky as a deranged stalker, a troubled young woman in need of counseling.

    Then there was that Clinton dude who had his advisers slime Paula Jones as what you’d catch by trolling bills through a trailer park.

    Wonder if this Mister Civility Clinton person knows those other guys. Because he’s probably pretty pissed off at their antics, and doesn’t want them to tarnish his own sterling reputation.

  14. TexasDoc says:

    I am not a pediatrician, and I doubt that any nine year old could imagine the concept of “civil” political discourse at an adult level.

  15. Carlos says:

    Heck, TexasDoc, I’m way beyond “adult” (like well into golden chosen), and I can’t think of a single jackass friend I know who understands the concept of “civil” discourse at an adult level.

    I’m sure there’s at least one or two out there; I just don’t happen to know them.

  16. Kate says:

    Defintely, shades of George Orwell here…the next step is reeducation for the masses who don’t agree, civily that is.

  17. bd says:

    ref gg: terrific update

    civility institute? “a mind is a terrible thing to waste” – uaz should be sending refund checks to the alumni for this pretense at education – this is the kind of move that breeds contempt