As we approach the half way mark of President Obama’s term, the timing is right to assess America’s next chapter and the direction that the country is headed in. On Thursday, January 13, 2010 from 6- 9 p.m. , Tavis Smiley and the Smiley Group will present America’s Next Chapter at George Washington University in Washington, DC with panelists Princeton University professor Cornel West, Arianna Huffington, founder of the Huffington Post, David Frum, former speech writer for President George W. Bush, Dana Milbank, lead political columnist for the Washington Post and a host of other thought leaders. The 3 hour panel discussion will air with live coverage on C-Span. Panelists will discuss the economy and many of the tough topics facing the country today. Notably missing from the panel are any politicians.
I had the opportunity to interview Tavis Smiley on Thursday, January 6, 2011. In the interview, Mr. Smiley said the omission of any politicians was an intentional one and not an oversight. One of the main problems facing the country is the political gridlock and polarization of the 2 political parties. Mr. Smiley said during the interview that he is not hopeful about getting beyond the political gridlock and fearful of the political polarization that we are now facing. Mr. Smiley is asking what is our response as citizenry to take part in the economic recovery. Perhaps, we have the solution and not government. Mr. Smiley says that America’s Next Chapter will seek to instruct, inform and inspire Americans. Following the live coverage on January 13, the event will repeat on PBS for 3 nights from January 18 – January 20 and with later discussions on the Smiley and West radio show.
In order to register, please go to Americas Next Chapter. Please register soon as the event is almost filled to capacity. Registration is free and open to the public. The discussion will also be live online on Twitter under the hashtag #AmericasNextChapter. Please join the conversation.
Debbie Hines is a trial lawyer and legal and political commentator. She also contributes to the Huffington Post. She holds a juris Doctorate from George Washington University Law School and a BA from the University of Pennsylvania. She will attend America’s Next Chapter as one of the official bloggers to cover the live event.