TUCSON, Ariz. - Tucson's tragic mass-shooting in January 2011 not only evoked enormous pain -- it sparked an outcry for change.
Why a lone gunman would open fire on innocent constituents hoping to shake hands with their congresswoman is incomprehensible, but not as surprising an act to some experts.
"I think there's a lot to be mad at," said Dr. Brint Milward, director of the National Institute for Civil Discourse at the University of Arizona.
The foundation focuses on dialogue and tolerance among people with opposing political views.
"People have a lot to be unhappy about and I think what we would like to do is try and channel that anger into a positive way of dealing with those problems so it'll influence the politicians," Milward explained.
With less than 9 percent of Americans today approving of our Congress, many are calling for change. And that starts with the focus on our next generation of leaders.
"What we're trying to do is to teach them how they can make a difference and be more effective in politics," Milward said of the foundation's goal.
It was a speech on civility given by President Barack Obama just days following the Tucson shootings that sparked the creation of the institute, which includes a distingiushed list of board members, as well as honorary chairmen, former presidents Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush.
So as we reflect on January 8th and remember those we lost, the National Institute for Civil Discourse serves as a source of healing and hope for a better tomorrow.
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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