Thoughts on "Renewing Our Democracy"

Am back in DC after two terrific days up at Tufts.  Yesterday spent the day at a very exciting and action packed Tisch College Board meeting.  I agree with our Chair Deb Jospin's take that the there truly is an extraordinary amount of remarkable things flowing from the college these days.  And it is a true honor to be back on campus on part of it all.

On Wednesday, NDN, along with Tisch College and many other campus partners including the Roosevelt Campus Network Tufts chapter, held a very strong forum on campus called, "Renewing Our Democracy."  Inspired by the heroic battles waged by brave leaders across the world for greater liberty and freedom in their own countries, we felt it was time to consider steps we could take here at home to improve and strenghten our own democracy.  As a guide we took to heart Thomas Jefferson's hopeful belief that each American generation would need to reapply and renew the revolutionary spirit to their own unique moment in history.  It sures feels as if that moment is upon us now in the US, and that this remarkable generation, the Millennials, coming of age and increasingly to power, has an extraordinary opportunity in the years ahead to reinvent the great American democratic spirit for a new day. 

We will have video of the event here on the site next week.  In the meantime feel free to review three op-eds which ran in the Tufts Daily by three of our presenters: 

"Let Every Vote Count" by Pam Wilmot

"Suppressing Youth Votes? An Invitation to Dialogue" by Peter Levine

"Another Reason To Reform The Senate" by Leslie Ogden

You will see from the range of ideas in these op-eds that there is a great deal we can and should be putting on the table about how to best improve our own democracy in the years ahead.  Of course we would be interested in any additional ideas you may have, as this is a subject we intend to stick with and drive a robust discussion on over the next few years, at least.

Finally, I want to thank our intern up on the Tufts campus, Leslie Ogden, for making the event such a success.  She did a remarkable job in bringing together appropriate partners for the discussion, building a top flight program, condcuting new and original research and making a strong presentation, and just making everything work well.  It was a great performance by a young and talented leader.   A big big shout out from DC this morning to her..

Update: Check out this coverage of the event published on the Tufts Campus.

Update 2: We put together this simple backgrounder if you want to read more.  And you can watch the video of the event here.  There are some strong presentations in here, well worth reviewing.