Journalism as a conversation

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Today I want to discuss how the new NMPolitics.net will give you a voice in the development of articles, and how those articles will be part of a greater conversation about important issues. I recently posted my thoughts on Facebook about a column that ran in the Las Cruces Sun-News in which the author claimed that Jesus would favor a capitalistic economic system.

The resulting dialogue is still continuing more than a week later. An ideologically diverse group of people have discussed issues including economic systems and Indiana’s recent law on “religious freedom” that many believe allows discrimination.

It’s on that last point that a couple of people with different ideological views, after a spirited debate, found some common ground: Government, they agreed, shouldn’t be in the business of marriage.

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I really enjoyed the discussion and appreciated the efforts many of you in my Facebook community to listen to each other and seek understanding. I haven’t counted up the comments, but I believe there are more than 200 at this time.

I was excited to see those who participated in the most recent portion of the discussion find common ground. I believe the best way forward is together – that we must do the hard work of listening and understanding each other so we can find solutions that work for as many people as possible.

I want to foster such conversation with the new NMPolitics.net. In this case that happened on Facebook. If NMPolitics.net were already publishing (We will be by approximately June 1!) I would have used that discussion as the basis for an article. I would have included some quotes from the Facebook discussion – from you – about the idea of getting government out of the business of marriage.

I would have also interviewed some experts and looked opinion polls on the subject, seeking to take an honest look at whether the idea is realistic and a good idea. And I would have written the article in the context in which the Facebook discussion took place – as a possible solution to the struggle playing out in Indiana right now.

In this instance, the Facebook conversation would have led to the development of an article for NMPoltics.net that would have included some of your comments and hopefully generated additional discussion on the topic.

This is an example of what I mean when I talk about journalism being a conversation.

If you like that vision, if you want to participate in the conversation (or are already doing it!), I’d appreciate you making a donation to help fund NMPolitics.net. Any amount helps! Can you give today?

You can donate here.

I’m grateful for your participation in this conversation and for your donations!