[OYAN] Misinformation and Political Propaganda and Civics workshops (teens)

Katie Anderson katie.anderson at state.or.us
Mon Jan 30 08:55:40 PST 2017

Forwarded on behalf of Donna Cohen and by request of people at the OYAN meeting last Friday. While the title includes "for adults," Donna thinks it would be appropriate for older teens. If you're interested, be sure to have a conversation with her about making sure it's developmentally appropriate for your group. This is not an endorsement.-Katie

Civics for Adults Community Workshops:
Enhancing Civic Knowledge / Inspiring Political Engagement

"The most important political office is that of the private citizen."  Justice Louis Brandeis

The goal of all workshops is to provide information typically hidden behind the headline-grabbing, background noise of our lives. Our democracy is strengthened when citizens have accurate knowledge.
"Donna brought a balanced, informed set of discussion points and fact-checking sources on voting, taxes, citizenship, and other topics that sometime turn politics from polite conversation to heated argument.  Sarah Jesudason, Tualatin PL [while at Tigard PL]

Citizen Activism 101-Making Change in Your Community
Want to improve life for yourself and your neighbors or have a concern about local, state or federal laws? Learn about strategies for change, and more: Information and misinformation, Examples of successful advocacy, Choosing your battles What matters to you?, Who makes the rules?, Getting heard: tools for change, "Tracking" civic/political issues State legislature is in session. What is going on and how to make your mark.
Thanks so much for hosting this!! I think that this sort of event is perfectly in line with the spirit of public              libraries, and I think we need ya'll now more than ever.
We would love more talks like this one about citizen advocacy.
Donna was fabulous. Engaging speaker and shared some really useful knowledge.
I loved this presentation! Donna had a lot of information and provided a lot of resources.
Especially appreciated the information on tracking [legislation]

Misinformation and Political Propaganda
We are overwhelmed with messages from politicians, news sources and other media. Learn to distinguish truth from fiction using critical thinking strategies. The workshop uses real world examples of political ads, news headlines, logical fallacies, graphs / charts, the effect of word choice in messaging, statistical data and other types of information in a "what do you see here? / what is missing?" type of format.
The last part is about finding accurate information. The goal is to help people become their own "factchecker".
"It's good to question assertions of any kind, especially timely in this election year. I liked Donna's
examples of real ads and how we need to be mentally vigilant."

The Influence of the Constitution on Political Conversation
By looking back at the creation of the Constitution we puncture some myths and develop a broader perspective on its significance - perspective that helps us evaluate current political events more thoughtfully. At times a person's [especially a politician's] explanation about the Constitution may be manipulative rather than truly informative.
"Amazing what was done [the creation of the Constitution] and what issues still remain."
"Good level of history and contemporary political ideas, their evolution and relevance to today."

Beyond Voting: Elections and Campaign Financing
This is a unique workshop covering 20 topics related to our electoral systems and presenting specific ideas for bi-partisan civic/political engagement. Topics:
Voting as Constitutional right(?), Voter Rights, Voter Fraud, Voter Registration, Voter Turnout, Felon voting, Instant Runoff Elections, Redistricting, Superdelegates, Electoral College, National Popular Vote, Campaign Financing, SuperPACS and 501(c)4s, Contribution Limits, Dark Money, Disclosure, Elected Officials Time Spent Fundraising, Public attitudes about Money in Politics, Oregon's Campaign Finance Database, Public Financing of Elections
"Thanks for all the great information... It was empowering."
""This talk was very informational and gave me some ideas of how to make a difference starting locally."
"Thanks so much for this interesting and engaging workshop on civics."

Donna L. Cohen, M.L.I.S, M.Ed. Teacher and Librarian
503-737-1425   citizen at civicthinker.net<mailto:citizen at civicthinker.net>
Civics For Adults - Enhancing Civic Knowledge / Inspiring Political Engagement

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