Detroit Today: ‘Civility Night’ event to explore the power of mutual respect

Civility Project co-founders Nolan Finley and Stephen Henderson will discuss the power of civility and more at “Civility Nights” on Wednesday.

Stephen Henderson (left) and Nolan Finley photographed by StoryCorps in 2017.

Stephen Henderson (left) and Nolan Finley photographed by StoryCorps in 2017.

In today’s political climate, many Americans believe they can’t be friends with people with opposing political viewpoints, or fear that any attempt to dive into a political topic with someone who might disagree would have a negative outcome.

This is part of the reason why Detroit Today host Stephen Henderson co-founded The Civility Project with Nolan Finley, editorial page editor for the Detroit News and Henderson’s long-time friend. Henderson and Finley rarely agree when it comes to politics, but their mutual respect for one another allows them to rise above their differences and actually listen, learn from and engage with each other.

On today’s show, Henderson speaks with Nolan about the goal of the project, and the upcoming Civility Night planned for 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 27 at Henry Ford College.

Subscribe to Detroit Today on Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle or wherever you get your podcasts.


Nolan Finley is the editorial page editor of The Detroit News. He’s also the co-founder of the Great Lakes Civility Project. Finley says The Civility Project can help teach people tips on how to maintain relationships across the political divide.

“We’ve become a much more hateful society, and I think dangerously so,” he said. “A lot of this hatred is rooted in a lack of understanding for each other, certainly a lack of respect for each other, and what we’re trying to get people to do is break down their assumptions of people who don’t agree with them politically or otherwise.”

Listen to Detroit Today with host Stephen Henderson weekdays from 9-10 a.m. ET on 101.9 WDET and streaming on-demand.

Trusted, accurate, up-to-date.

WDET strives to make our journalism accessible to everyone. As a public media institution, we maintain our journalistic integrity through independent support from readers like you. If you value WDET as your source of news, music and conversation, please make a gift today.

Donate today »


  • Detroit Today
    Dynamic and diverse voices. News, politics, community and the issues that define our region. Hosted by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Stephen Henderson, Detroit Today brings you fresh and perceptive views weekdays at 9 am and 7 pm.