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Ted Wetzel

"Although there are quite a lot of common values among us Americans, I continue to be amazed that even after my 200th interview, the one after that always added a new insight."

Meet the reformer: Ted Wetzel, who's got civic secrets to share

A lifelong resident of the Cleveland area, Ted Wetzel is an engineer who spent five years at a Fortune 500 company, 17 years in marketing and management at smaller manufacturers, and then 11 years as a small-business owner before turning to his passion project. He created Fighting to Understand to spread the message that civic education and a collaborative spirit among everyday Americans can restore the core values of a democratic republic for the next generation. With a diverse group of 18 collaborators, in October he self-published the first edition of a book now titled "9 Secrets for Avoiding Divided We Fall" and is working on a plan for widespread distribution this spring. His answers have been lightly edited for clarity and length.

What's democracy's biggest challenge, in 10 words or less.

Most people don't want freedom; they would settle for a just master. (I'm not sure who to attribute this verse to.)

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