The latest civic engagement platform is, well, super
Who better to bridge the political divide in our country than Captain America?
Marvel star Chris Evans is working to stand up for the little guy — this time in real life — by launching a bipartisan civic engagement app that explores a variety of issues in short videos. The actor says the aim of the new platform he unveiled last week, A Starting Point, is to provide people with concise answers to common political and policy questions.
Evans hopes to be something of a supersoldier in the combat to end the nation's era of political divisiveness — the app something that Steve Rogers (his character's original identity in 10 superhero movies in the past decade) might deploy to cut through the partisan noise and bring clarity and balance to Americans' most pressing problems.
While the 39-year-old Evans is well-known for his work on the big screen, for this new project he's been behind the camera collaborating with elected officials and asking questions about prominent issues facing America. He says he was inspired to create A Starting Point three years ago, after searching the internet for information on an issue and getting lost in the mountain of material available.
"I thought, 'What if there was a way that I could get not only concise answers to common questions but get the answers from the elected officials themselves?'" Evans said in a promotional video for his platform.
Chris Evans & Mark Kassen - A Starting Point www.youtube.com
In between making five movies since 2017, he's met with dozens of elected officials to film short topical videos for the platform. It has three main sections: Starting Points, videos of elected officials explaining different topics; Daily Points, an open forum in which elected officials can upload 60-second videos on a particular issue; and Counterpoints, constructive debates between Democrats and Republicans.
Topics of discussion include the environment, the Covid-19 pandemic, the economy, education, health care and immigration. Under the "government" section are videos about the Citizens United Supreme Court decision deregulating campaign money, the Electoral College, voting rights and gerrymandering.
There is also a directory of the more than 160 members of Congress, governors and mayors who have participated. By clicking on a particular elected official, users can see all the videos that person has contributed. Through the website, users can also find their representatives and register to vote.
"The more people involved in politics, the better. And hopefully the people who have no experience in this arena will find this site to be an intuitive and friendly access point," Evans said.
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