A Starting Point is Just the Beginning
Chris Evans launches his attempt to inject bipartisan politics into a partisan political world.
JULY 14th, 2020
hroughout recent years politics has become an increasingly divisive arena. With seismic shifts in the political and social landscapes, the appetite for information is not only booming, but so is the need for accuracy. For those entering the fray of politics, everything is second-guessed. The sheer volume of information is overwhelming and there is the constant accusation that every bill, policy or action is tainted with bias.
That is until A Starting Point (ASP) entered the political fray. The newly launched website aims to provide succinct ways of gathering and digesting politics for those struggling with the noise of division. Foundered by Hollywood actor Chris Evans, producer Mark Kassen and assisted by technology entrepreneur Joe Kiani; A Starting Point breaks down the important issues facing America and how politicians feel they should be tackled. Their mission is ‘to create a bipartisan channel of communication and connectivity between Americans and their elected officials with the goal of creating a more informed electorate.’
It is a big ask to effectively unite a society in debate when the plague of division is consistently pursued. Yet, ASP have created an idea – which in its simplicity – could help successfully implement long and meaningful change. Instead of using sources close to politicians to provide information, or accessing Google to fill in the blanks, ASP are stepping into the chasms of American power, speaking directly to those elected officials to answer the questions the public want to know. A Starting Point is essentially taking politics back to basics, and that approach has never been needed more.
We must not forget that we are living in a world which has experienced unfathomable change – and disruption – in the last four years alone. Brexit, the election of President Trump, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the COVID-19 pandemic have resulted in the public looking to our elected officials more than ever before. As a society we are asking more questions, and there seems to be a greater willingness to begin those uncomfortable conversations, but ASP already know this. Their issue is with the partisan nature of those conversations. Chris Evans describes this notion best in a recent interview with Fast Company, saying: “Sometimes the only way to move the ball down the field is with compromise, not everyone’s going to get the whole loathe.”
The Captain America actor has never shied away from his opinions on politics. A staunch critic of President Donald Trump, through ASP, Evans is demonstrating how bipartisanship can bring around lasting change. He – alongside ASP – has actively interviewed politicians on all sides, ensuring that opposing takes on a universal problem can be aired in an easy, effective, and cohesive manner. For each of the differing subjects, including the economy, education, the environment, government, health, immigration, rights, and international relations; ASP ask a selection of questions which then allow users to choose a selection of at least three Democrats and three Republicans to answer. With the video responses lasting around 30 seconds, users can absorb the information they need in an unbiased, fair and bipartisan manner.
Navigating the website – which is incredibly easy to use – ASP leaves you feeling with a sense of hope for the future. A hope that as a community we as voters are beginning to reject the divisive and corrosive nature that has poisoned the debate around political issues.
It is also exceptionally informative. Whether you consider yourself a seasoned and experienced political animal, or ASP becomes your first steps into the world, there is no propaganda here or promotion of a political affiliation. A Starting Point is a safe space to discover which politics best represent you and your image for the country you want live in.
It has always been believed that true change and political evolution can only be achieved if everyone is provided the opportunity to have their say. For years we have failed at this. Instead of talking with each other, we have resorted to talking at one another. Through social media every voice has received a platform, and the posts with the most likes and retweets have drowned out those without. The frustration of being unheard, or not hearing your viewpoints succinctly and fairly broadcast have left sectors of society feeling alienated. ASP have provided a remedy to this.
With the “counterpoints” section, representatives from both political sides debate the issues important to Americans. Again – through short clips – clear points are made without the screaming and shouting we have come to expect in a partisan world. It is refreshing and reminds you that there truly is more which unites us than divides us.
The site is exclusive to America, though the message and idea could be successfully adapted to an international stage. Here in the UK, we are facing the same social problems our American cousins are, and A Starting Point of our own could well be the antibiotic to the divisive sickness damaging our political arena.
The developers have stated that ASP is a work-in-progress. But their tenacity in attempting to bring a fair and unbiased debate into politics once again is more than admirable – it is essential and long overdue. For them, the overall measure of success boils down to voters. They want to inspire all generations that differing votes matter just as much as differing voices.
Chris, Mark and Joe should be applauded for their willingness to tackle the treacherous landscape of politics, and their valuable service should be celebrated to ensure that A Starting Point never reaches its end.
To find out more about A Starting Point you can visit their website here
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