Partisanship in politics has become increasingly tense in the 21st century, and while many Americans lament this polarization, few seem convinced that a rapprochement is possible. Yet history is full of proclaimed enemies striking mutually beneficial deals even in the toughest conditions. In this episode, NCSL Director Curt Stedron explains how a deep examination of the Christmas truce struck between Entente and Allied powers during World War I can reveal some core lessons for finding common ground in even the most horrific conditions.
Curt Stedron is Director on the Legislative Training Institute at the National Conference of State Legislatures, a non-pa
rtisan organization whose mission is “to advance the effectiveness, independence and integrity of legislatures and to foster interstate cooperation.” He is a graduate of West Point and previously served as an Officer in the US Army. This conversation grew out of his talk “Lessons in Trust: The Christmas Truce of 1914,” which he delivered at the 2022 NCSL Legislative Summit and can be viewed via NCSL’s linkedIn page here.
This episode was edited by Gary Fletcher.