Presented by Chris Highland
Chris will select several true stories from his new book, Broken Bridges, drawn from years as a chaplain in jails and shelters. He will reflect on the wisdom of the “unheard” as well as insights from well-known voices like Frederick Douglass and the Dalai Lama. His book is an invitation to wider thinking for secular people and for those who still believe. The presentation and discussion should provide ample insights toward repairing, rebuilding, or even replacing old structures of belief that stand in the way of true progressive reform.
Chris is a Humanist Celebrant and Freethinker who served as a Presbyterian Minister and Interfaith Chaplain for many years in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is the author of Broken Bridges, A Freethinker’s Gospel, My Address is a River and other books. He teaches at UNC-Asheville (Reuter Center), Blue Ridge Community College and writes the weekly “Highland Views” column for the Asheville Citizen-Times. He has a Master’s Degree from San Francisco Theological Seminary and a B.A. in Philosophy and Religion from Seattle Pacific University. He has directed and managed several non-profit organizations providing emergency shelter and cooperative housing for independent seniors.
Chris lives in Asheville with his wife Carol Hovis, a Presbyterian minister and Enneagram teacher. See www.chighland.com for more information.
Presented by Les Leopold
Les will explore connections that bind the pandemic, police brutality, racism and the structures that are accelerating inequality in our society. Besides lots of data and compelling charts on rising inequality in our society, he will present the results of studies on who’s dying from the current pandemic and why. Les will also look more closely at the functions of prisons and the police in an era of rising inequality. There will be lots of connections for you to chew on.
Les Leopold is the author of “Runaway Inequality: An Activist’s Guide to Economic Justice”, 3rd edition, June, 2018. He not only explains where the U.S. economy went wrong, he provides a roadmap of how to get it back on track.
Les graduated from Oberlin College and Princeton University’s School of Public and International Affairs (MPA 1975) and co-founded the Labor Institute (1976), a non-profit organization focused on occupational safety and health, the environment and economics. He has authored several books. Since the publishing of his most recent book, Les has been speaking and conducting “Reversing Runaway Inequality” workshops and seminars. He states: “Either we wage a large-scale battle for economic, social and environmental justice, or we will witness the continued deterioration of the world we inhabit. The arc of capitalism does not bend towards justice. We must bend it.”