Discovering the Cultural Divide: My Journey to Understanding, Part 3

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

Why can’t we just get along? This is a question that I have been working on in my forthcoming book (January 2020), Divided: Five Colliding Worldviews and How to Navigate Them. I would like to share with you some ideas that I have been exploring.

Join me in this 7 part blog series in discovering how I came to studying, researching, teaching, and writing about the divide.  See the divide play out in your life as well!

Election Day 2016: the Aftermath

3.1 ship.JPGWith no sleep, I stumbled through the cruise ship’s farewell breakfast buffet. Everything seemed to be normal. Even the breakfast server seemed unfazed and a bit baffled by my passionate declaration of dire consequences awaiting the world and the cruise industry because of the election.

All of the pessimistic warnings came to naught but I was in enmeshed in an emotional and irrational fury. I gathered my baggage and took the bus to the airport. I chatted with several people; some who were as stunned as I was while others said they thought Trump would be a good president and his ideas were sorely needed. I thought they must be delusional and not know that dangers lurked below the surface.

3.2 Trump with Kelly Ann Conway, election night

Trump with adviser, Kelly Ann Conway, election night 2016

My son, a political junkie, called me at the Venice airport to hear my thoughts on the election and rant a bit, well, a rant a lot, about the events. He attended an election viewing party with his neighbors near Arizona State University in Tempe, and they all staggered home in disbelief. He hoped I didn’t have any trouble getting home from Europe to the U.S., as if perhaps Europeans would seek revenge on an average American citizen who could have possibly voted for Trump. Actually, I made it home safely and without incident.

As I made my way back to the United States, my depression intensified as the political reality sank in. What could have happened? I read everything I could about the election to see why the key Rust Belt states went for Trump, although by a narrow margin. What was his appeal? I started t3.3o realize that I had missed, along with many other people, an important trend in American culture: an intense dissatisfaction with the prevailing powers by a large swath of the American public. I was fascinated with this shift and was committed to understanding more about it.

My investigation into the question about the cultural divide, however, would have to wait several months; more immediate events were at hand: my daughter prematurely gave birth to twins, a boy and girl. My help was needed in New York City for several months. I happily switched my attention from politics to grandmotherly duties.

About the Author:

Dr. Denise R. Ames is a long-time educator, grade 7-university, author of seven books, and president of an educational non-profit, Center for Global Awareness, based in Albuquerque, New Mexico. CGA provides books, resources, and services with a holistic, global- focused, and perspective-taking approach for their three programs: Global Awareness for Educators, books and resources for educators and students grade 9-university; Gather, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a self-organizing study and conversation program for adults focusing on seeing different perspectives of pressing global issues; and their most recent program Turn, Transformative Understanding and Reflection Network, which encourages lifelong and transformative learning to help us arrive at a place of personal and global well-being using a seven “path” approach.

wviewscoverPlease email or visit for more information.

For more about worldviews see Dr. Ames’ book Five Worldviews: How We See the World. $9.95


This entry was posted in awareness, cultural divide, diversity, perspectives, Uncategorized, worldviews and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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