'You Want The Best For This Country, I Respect That': 2 Strangers Find Common Ground Israel Baryeshua has conservative political views, while Tiffany Briseño identifies as liberal. Both agree that more kindness and compassion in politics would benefit the country.
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'You Want The Best For This Country, I Respect That': 2 Strangers Find Common Ground

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'You Want The Best For This Country, I Respect That': 2 Strangers Find Common Ground

'You Want The Best For This Country, I Respect That': 2 Strangers Find Common Ground

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/665667666/666038542" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

It is Friday and time again for StoryCorps. Today we bring you a conversation between two strangers. It's part of a StoryCorps initiative called One Small Step, which brings together people on opposite sides of the political divide in an attempt to find what they can agree on. Tiffany Briseno identifies as liberal. Israel Baryeshua, a conservative. They sat down together in Denver, Colo.

ISRAEL BARYESHUA: I'm a single father. I have two children. I actually grew up in Griffin-Spalding County. If you're born in that county, you have, like, a 16 percent chance of getting out of poverty. So I'm, like, the 16 percent, and I tell that to my children. There's no excuses. It comes from within.

TIFFANY BRISENO: And something that I also convey to my children. My parents grew up with nothing. My mom didn't have shoes, didn't have food, that kind of thing. And, you know, she's the one kid that put herself through college as a single parent.

BARYESHUA: Yeah. When you think about the future, what are you most scared of?

BRISENO: I am just really nervous for my kids, right? Like, I feel like right now, everything is just mean and nasty.

BARYESHUA: Right, instead of reacting with kindness or...

BRISENO: Yeah.

BARYESHUA: ...Compassion, people are quick to react with...

BRISENO: Yeah.

BARYESHUA: ...I guess hate...

BRISENO: Hate.

BARYESHUA: ...Or anger and not just like me and you are doing, is sitting here talking and try to understand...

BRISENO: Yeah.

BARYESHUA: ...Perspectives.

BRISENO: Is there one thing that you respect about the way that I see the world?

BARYESHUA: No.

(LAUGHTER)

BRISENO: Fair enough.

BARYESHUA: I'm just kidding. I think you said that you want the best for this country. I respect that view, and I agree with that view.

BRISENO: OK.

BARYESHUA: Is there anything that you respect that I said today?

BRISENO: That you're a hardworking single father that wants what's best for his children, and I think that that's commendable and common between you and I, for sure. So...

BARYESHUA: Thank you.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MARTIN: Tiffany Briseno and Israel Baryeshua, two strangers talking about what unites them. It's part of the StoryCorps One Small Step initiative. Their interview will be archived along with hundreds of thousands of others at the Library of Congress.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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