Conflict At The Capital

by Jan 16, 2021

Isn’t our strength in conflict resolution? Where are the CSP writers? Can we post something today? Tomorrow? Isn’t this where we represent?

As a citizen of the United States and as a PCA practitioner I have a variety of feelings and thoughts in me as I watch the violent protestors attack the process of certifying the Electoral College result of the November 2020 Presidential Election.  Fear, anger, sadness, a resolve to engage conflict and understand, while at the same time maintaining my personal integrity and preserving basic democratic processes in my home country are some of things that fill my mind.  David’s prompt for words helps me process what is going on in real time as I write.  The following is from my frame of reference alone.
The Person-Centered Approach provides a basis to engage conflict between individuals and groups. As PCA practitioners each person associated with CSP brings their abilities, knowledge, and activities to the world to apply the PCA in a variety of ways. As I write these words I know that we can work to create situations where conflict, even conflict that verges on the deadly, can be engaged in a unique way that encourages understanding of thoughts and emotions on the conflict, and can change the character of the conflict. Whether that conflict is within or between individuals, or at the level of society, as we see playing out in Washington, D.C. as I sit and write these words we know of means to address such challenges. I recommit myself to using the ideas of the PCA to engage the conflicts we face this moment and to create the opportunity for care, reconnection, understanding, and a mutual path forward with those who are very different than I am in terms of their worldview. I invite my CSP colleagues who want to work on projects that might address the current crisis to reach out to me so we can begin discussions and work together to make opportunities for change and growth.
I know of no guarantees that my efforts will be successful, but it is how I want to be as I experience this moment of challenge and opportunity.