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Any Progress Is Better Than None

October 3, 2017

In response to the tragedy in Las Vegas

Once again, we sit bowed in tragic disbelief at the senseless slaughter that our fellow Americans regularly visit upon one another. Once again, against the hard wall of partisan dysfunction, we hurl soft platitudes and hope things will change.

Yes, there are passionate, valid disagreements and real interests at stake. True, there are no magic answers, everyone imaginable will be imperfect. But even incremental progress can save a teen’s life who, just before the bullets riddled her body, was taking in her first concert and feeling the world open before her.

At Public Agenda, our business is to understand, inform, engage and represent the public, among whom there is considerable common ground across partisan lines – obscured though it is by the posturing of politicians and interest groups – for common-sense measures that would make it harder for dangerous people to get guns and easier for the mentally ill to receive treatment.

Enacting these points of agreement won’t be easy, nor will it solve the entire problem. But with bold leadership, public support can become public will and lead to change. Rather than sit idle while things deteriorate, we should take the pragmatic steps in front of us and then figure things out from there.


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Will Friedman

President, Public Agenda