Last week I joined the president of the PTU Board, Gregg Davidson, to talk with a non-profit leader in Skagit County. We made a proposal to him about our Let’s Go Together public partnership.

We discussed the polarization that is happening in our culture and the sense of hopelessness people feel about it. Gregg and I discussed how we wanted to bring people of diverse cultures, traditions, and socioeconomic situations together in three events per year to increase social trust. We proposed this as a human strategy that is both sustainable and powerful.

This leader said, “Skagit county is a perfect place to try this out.”  We agreed.

So what is the right place and the right time for something like Let’s Go Together?

I believe our strategy is especially effective in communities that are just becoming conscious of the diversity of cultures and traditions among them. That is the time to help people get to know one another and find common ground, before the dehumanizing rhetoric of hate groups can take a hold. Our LGT program provides participants and onlookers with examples of how people of diverse cultures and traditions can build a stronger community together. With a positive story about how we can be both committed to our larger community and to our own tradition and culture, people can relax and see our diversity both as natural and as an asset.

We hope to expand this work beyond Skagit county next fall. Snohomish county and the city of Snohomish are looking like the logical next places for us to offer LGT. We have begun conversations with leaders there and will let you know how it goes.