Can we learn to find middle ground with those we don’t understand?
This theoretical question was brought to one of our writer’s attention after the staff member watched an episode series on YouTube, created by Jubilee, called “Middle Ground.” This series is all about bridging the gap between one another by sparking dialogue and listening to “the other side’s” perspective.
It is also all about finding where people’s similarities and differences lie in order to find the things people can disagree on, but also the things they can agree with.
Each video focuses on a specific topic, for example:
Can Trump supporters and Immigrants see eye to eye?
Can Black Lives Matter and Law Enforcement see eye to eye?
Pro-Gun Vs. Anti-Gun
Men and Women Seek to Understand Each Other
Can Teens & Parents See Eye to Eye?
Most of their topics hit close to home for a lot of people today and aim to spark dialogue on current events.
The definition of middle ground found on Google is, “a standpoint or area midway between extreme or opposing positions, options, or objectives.”
In understanding this, a viewer can realize that the outcome of these videos is not always as clear and clear-cut as that definition. One of the experiments, titled “Pro-Gun Vs. Anti-Gun” embodies this with strongly opinionated people, unwavering in their beliefs. Though it must be noted that each person who was a part of the experiment, specifically 6 strangers, seemed to be displaying proper respect, when it came to listening and perceiving other perspectives. Each side would be asked a question, followed by stepping away from the pool of light to share their individual response to the statements at hand.
A few statements that were brought up were:
-My views on guns could change.
-I’ve been in a situation in which my life was in danger.
-If my life was in danger, I would kill.
Responses to these phrases often became moral dilemmas, along with “first-hand experience” based opinions.
It is very interesting to see such genuinely thoughtful answers.
To get other views, we asked two students to react to the content in that video, “Pro-Gun Vs Anti-Gun, and here is what senior, Jasmine De La Cruz, took away from the video.
“I think that when it comes to guns there are times when it is appropriate, but when used for violence I think that’s when officials should step up and say ‘that’s not okay,’ and put regulations so that the average person would have to go through sort of tests to be able to own a gun. As well as being able to prove that you won’t use a gun for malicious intent,” explained De La Cruz.
Her response is important because through her viewing and listening to both sides in the video, she was able to form an opinion that was more swayed by the understanding and open-minded nature of the video than anything else.
The other student, senior Jacob Delos Santos, expressed what he enjoyed about the experiment.
“The fact that they were brought together on a topic that they were at the opposite sides of was awesome to see. That both groups stayed calm and actually gave good points for both sides was good to see,” shared Delos Santos.
When asked “How do you see this experiment being relevant to current events?” he shared what he admired about the series’ purpose and just how current it really is.
“The experiment was made because of the current events. All the violence and school shootings has finally been up to the point where people actually want to give more attention to it and make a difference about it. This experiment was made to bring more light onto the subject,” said Delos Santos.
Like Delos Santos said, this series was made to shed light and share stories so people can better understand other opinions and stances. And maybe not so fortunately, there are many topics being discussed in the news that need further attention and conversation.
So, right now in society, it’s apparent that we need to find new ways to successfully communicate our passion and pain. These videos are a perfect start.
Want to watch the Middle Ground Series? Visit the channel at:
Want to get involved? Submit a letter to us at:
Want more info on the story? Contact me and give me your feedback!
Let us know if you think the RHS Arrow should host a Middle Ground discussion and video!