National Issues Forums: JMU-Harrisonburg-Rockingham County Online Deliberation | Guns, Rights And Security In The Shenandoah Valley

Join us for an online deliberative dialogue convened by JMU’s Institute for Constructive Advocacy and Dialogue (ICAD) in partnership with the National Issues Forums Institute (NIFI) as a part of USATODAY’s Hidden Common Ground project.

This online deliberation will take place on Saturday March 21, 2020 at 5:00pm.

Students, faculty and staff will deliberate together over the tough choices facing us on the issue of guns, rights, and security in an era of mass shootings and deepening political polarization in the Shenandoah Valley and Virginia. Using NIFI’s nonpartisan discussion guide on “How Should We Prevent Mass Shootings In our Communities,” we’ll talk about three exclusive options for this issue and weigh the tradeoffs and consequences of acting in order to find hidden common ground on balancing rights and safety on guns. The three options include (1) Make Mass Killings More Difficult: We should restrict the availability of dangerous weapons, identify potentially dangerous people, and prevent them from carrying out mass casualty plans; (2) Equip People to Defend Themselves: We should be prepared for violence and have the means to defend against it; (3) Root Out Violence and Hate in Society: we live in a culture that perpetuates violence and numbs people to its effects. We must root out and stop the glorification of violence and promotion of hate to break this cycle.

Trained nonpartisan JMU students, staff, and alumni will moderate these small group discussions.


Dr. Kara Dillard
Email Organizer


March 21, 2020 at 7pm - 9pm Eastern Time (US & Canada)
Robbie Ha ·