How to Have a Civil Conversation Across the Political Divide
The School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership and partnered with the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication and the Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law welcomed Judge Michael Mukasey and Nadine Strossen to ASU as part of the annual lecture series, "Polarization and Civil Disagreement: Confronting America's Civic Crisis."
Strossen and Mukasey visited the School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership at ASU to have a conversation that models a civil, mutually respectful and vigorous exchange of ideas on issues that challenge American society. These speakers, intellectually and politically opposed on many of the issues, demonstrated that lively civil discourse is possible, even when we deeply disagree about the issues. This sort of dialogue is the path to civil disagreement and perhaps past the polarization that constitutes America’s civic crisis.
Nadine Strossen, a chaired professor at New York Law School, is a widely recognized expert on constitutional law and civil liberties. The former president of the American Civil Liberties Union (1991 to 2008), she now serves on the ACLU’s National Advisory Council, as well as the Advisory Boards of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, Foundation for Individual Rights in Education and Heterodox Academy. The National Law Journal has named Strossen one of America’s “100 Most Influential Lawyers,” and several other national publications have named her as one of the country’s most influential women. Strossen’s book, "Defending Pornography: Free Speech, Sex, and the Fight for Women’s Rights" (Scribner) was named a New York Times “notable book” of 1995. Her 2018 book, "HATE: Why We Should Resist It with Free Speech, Not Censorship" (Oxford University Press), has earned praise from ideologically diverse readers, including Harvard Professor Cornel West and Princeton Professor Robert George.
Michael B. Mukasey served as the 81st attorney general of the United States, the nation’s chief law enforcement officer, from November 2007 to January 2009. During that time, he oversaw the U.S. Justice Department and advised on critical issues of domestic and international law. From 1988 to 2006, he served as a district judge in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, becoming chief judge in 2000. In February 2009, Judge Mukasey joined the New York office of Debevoise and Plimpton LLP, where he is of counsel in the litigation department and focuses his practice primarily on international litigation and arbitration, internal corporate investigations and corporate governance. Judge Mukasey has received numerous honors, including the Federal Bar Council’s Learned Hand Medal for Excellence in Federal Jurisprudence. He received his bachelor of laws from Yale Law School in 1967 and his bachelor's degree from Columbia College in 1963.