2016 Presidential Election: The Effects of Political Rhetoric on Minority Communities

Thursday, May 26, 2016
Assembly Hall

Thursday, May 26, 2016


Assembly Hall

As reported in a Washington Post article, a group of Trump supporters surrounded, knocked down and almost choked a black man who was supporting the Black Lives Matter cause in Birmingham, Alabama. At an Indiana high school, students sought to intimidate their opponents by chanting “Build a wall; build a wall” during a basketball game against a school with a heavy Latino student population. At another instant, an armed group gathered outside a Dallas mosque where they menaced and threatened worshippers.

The next day, another politically intoxicated man threatened to blow up a mosque in VA and then threw smoke bombs and a Molotov cocktail at the facility. American political rhetoric has grown so toxic that these kinds of politically motivated violence occurrences have almost become natural.

As the United States gears up for another presidential election, it can credibly be said that the American public has never encountered such political polarization. Minorities have become the scapegoat of candidates on their way to further contextualize political agendas and motivations. What will be the outcome of such agendas, and how are they risking a clearer future ahead for the fostering of dialogue? How can we address them? At this year’s Chicago Interfaith Gathering, the Niagara Foundation explores lessons in dialogue among minorities and promoting peace after or during such political polarization.

Read the Global Voices interview with panelists Hind Makki and Juan Salgado here.

The Niagara Foundation is proud to present its annual Chicago Interfaith Gathering (CIG). The CIG is a three-day event, whose purpose is to bring together people of various religious and social backgrounds to discuss pertinent issues. At this three-day-long program, Niagara Foundation assembles some of the country’s top intellectuals, peace building professionals, and interfaith leaders at a panel and college students at a workshop to address current trends and challenges in the project of healing individuals and communities during and after conflicts. The program adjourns with a dinner of friendship, called the Abrahamic Traditions Dinner.Please join the Niagara Foundation as we uncover the importance of building bridges in our communities and our world.

Keynote Speaker

Rev. Dirk Ficca, Director of the Interreligious Initiative for Middle East Peace

Dr. Michael Dawson, University of Chicago Professor


Hind Makki, Founder and Curator of Side Entrance
Juan Salgado, President and CEO of Instituto del Progreso Latino
Mark Baldwin, Executive Editor of the Rockford Register Star

Free and open to the public.  Register here.

Sponsored by the Global Voices Lecture Series and the Niagara Foundation.

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