October 10, 2018 University of Southern Maine, Equality

What does “equality” mean to you?

University of Southern Maine

Woodbury Campus Center Bedford Street, Portland 

Wednesday, October 10, 2:00pm-4:30pm 

Hosted by Intercultural Student Engagement & University of Southern Maine, Student Affairs

Does equality mean that underprivileged people should get more?

How do you know if something is unequal?

Can “separate but equal” work well? Does equal access to space and other resources make everything okay?

Should we force people to share?

Is good fortune “fair?”

How is equality different from equity, or fairness, or inclusiveness?

What is society’s obligation towards equality?


Come to this Make Shift Coffee House and tell us how you feel about these and related questions. And come hear how your neighbors feel.

All welcome!

As with all Make Shift Coffee Houses, this is not a debate. It’s not about persuading each other or arguing with each other.

It’s not about deciding what’s best or what’s worse, who’s right or who’s wrong, who’s good or who’s bad.

It’s simply about UNDERSTANDING each other’s political views. It’s a lot more about listening than telling.

We want to hear your views AND how your views were shaped by your childhood, your education, and other influences on your life.


We begin with free food and live music; a chance to get a snack and chat with in pairs or small groups to get started.

The heart of the event is the next hour or so where we will engage in full group facilitated discussion. Following guidelines for a civil conversation, we will learn from each other by asking questions and hearing what’s important to the “other side.” All that’s required is a desire to understand and the willingness to listen.

After the full group discussion we’ll strike up the music again, get another cup of coffee, and talk in small groups about specific topics. Some of us will talk in pairs. It’s informal. It’s a coffee house!

Before wrapping up, Craig will bring the group back together in one last group dialogue. This time could be used for a wrap up with a summary of key concepts as well as any more input from the group.

This Make Shift Coffee House will be moderated by Craig Freshley of Good Group Decisions. A professional meeting facilitator, Craig will manage a civil exchange of ideas as a neutral third party. It’s not about judging right or wrong or good or bad, it’s about understanding each others’ perspectives.