Revive Civility in the Presidential Debates
Recent polling by Weber Shandwick shows that Americans feel this election is the most uncivil in recent memory, with two-thirds of voters saying the 2016 is less civil than others and 74 percent agreeing that civility has decreased in the last few years.
As a way to reset the tone of this election, The National Institute for Civil Discourse (NICD) is calling on presidential debate moderators, candidates and audiences to commit to more civil debates. NICD’s Debate Standards, if adopted, will ensure that the debates are fair, informative, and civil. More than 65 organizations have already signed on to the standards.
Help revive civility by supporting the Debate Standards for the upcoming Presidential Debate. Names of signatories will be sent to the Presidential Debate moderators, asking them to adopt the Debate Standards for the upcoming debates.
The Debate Standards are:
I want debaters to:
- Be respectful of others in speech and behavior
- Answer the question being asked by the moderator
- Make ideas and feelings known without disrespecting others
- Take responsibility for past and present behavior, speech and actions
- Stand against incivility when faced with it
I want moderators to:
- Address uncivil behavior by naming it and moderating the conversation to move toward a more respectful dialogue
- Enforce debate rules equally
- Hold candidates accountable by challenging each candidate to speak the truth and act with integrity
- Treat all candidates equally in regards to the complexity of questions and debate rules
- Be respectful when interacting with candidates
I want audience members to:
- Be respectful of other audience members, the candidates and moderators in speech and behavior
- Refrain from creating disturbances that impact other audience members, candidates and moderators
- Take responsibility for personal behavior, speech and actions
- Speak against incivility by reminding candidates it is not acceptable
- Practice active listening when someone else is speaking, seeking to understand them
Today: The National Institute for Civil Discourse is counting on you
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