This week’s Firelight Chat will be an interesting one.
Throughout my career I’ve counseled couples, and rarely have I seen a troubled relationship – or been in one – in which one party was 100 percent correct and the other 100 percent wrong. In working with couples it is not my role to be judge and jury, but to create the possibility for deeper listening in the space of which non-judgement and compassion can emerge.
That is part of the skill set I believe I bring to the race for the presidency. I have come over the course of my lifetime to be deeply aware of the grey areas in life. All of us are flawed human beings, and on another level most of us are doing our best simply trying to survive.
For that reason perhaps, I feel a unique ability to view the relationship between Israelis and Palestinians with the nuance most needed now. Those who view the relationship only through the lens of victimization on either side, lacking in compassion or willingness to understand an experience that is not their own, are not the harbingers of a better way. 21st Century problems – including this one – will not be solved on the battlefield, but rather through forging a consciousness that lifts us above it. I have met both Palestinians and Israelis, Arabs and Jews, who are ready to do that. I listen to them now, and I will empower them when I am President.
This weeks’ Firelight Chat brings me into conversation with two of my most trusted friends and advisors: Omar Baddar and Josh Lockman.
Omar Baddar is a Palestinian American political analyst based in Washington, DC. He has served in senior positions at leading Palestinian-American and Arab-American organizations where his work focused on U.S. policy towards Palestine and Israel. He has participated in dozens of panels, lectures, and debates on college and university campuses throughout the US. His media appearances include the BBC, MSNBC, Al-Jazeera, Sky News, Voice of America, and other outlets, and his writings have appeared in Salon, Newsweek, Huffpost, the Daily Beast, and Jadaliyya, among other platforms.
Josh Lockman is the Director of Strategic Initiatives at J Street and has been actively involved in local/national politics and the Middle East policy arena. He has also taught international law and US foreign policy at USC Law School since 2011. He has appeared on CNN, BBC, and other media outlets regarding US foreign policy in the Middle East, including the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He earned his J.D. from USC Law School in 2008 and his B.A. from Yale University in 2004.
The conversation that will lead us forward is not stuck at the level of who’s right and who’s wrong. The answer lies in what the poet Rumi described as a field beyond all that. In finding that field, we will find our solutions.
I hope you will listen in this Wednesday night, 3pmPT/6pmET, on Marianne2024.com and on all my social media channels.
May the Firelight of meaningful conversation illumine our understanding.