And From These Words, Torah Increases: Conversations With People You Disagree With

Billy Planer, the founder of Etgar 36–a Jewish youth program that personally introduces teens to the different sides of the issues of our day, wants to push all of us to use the Talmud as a model for how we can have conversations with people who disagree with us. He proposes a counter-cultural but very Jewish idea: it is possible no matter what side of the fence you sit on to find something in common and engage with people who are different from you. It is these conversations that will change the world–or at least yours.

Filmed at the William Breman Jewish Heritage and Holocaust Museum in Atlanta, Georgia in cooperation with the Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta.

Billy Planer is the Founder and Director of Etgar 36. He has worked with Jewish youth for 30 years in camps, synagogue youth groups and schools. Challenged by a friend, Billy interviewed people while on a road trip around America. Halfway through, he realized he should be bringing teens to these historical spots and meet with people who are involved in changing the world and so he created Etgar 36 a nonprofit Jewish educational venture. Etgar 36 is a summer journey that takes Jewish teens on a bus across America to learn history, politics and activism and find their voice and power by meeting with all sides of political issues, understand the unique culture of each city, become empowered to get involved to create change and develop their American and Jewish identities. During the academic year, Etgar 36 takes groups on Civil Rights journeys in the South. Over 18,000 people have been on an Etgar 36 journey in the past 15 years. Billy received his Bachelor's degree from Syracuse University and a Masters in Education and Counseling from Georgia State University.

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