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Let's Talk About Hope.

Join the movement that is changing the narrative and reclaiming a sense of hope and agency, through powerful interviews and inspiring stories.

The urgency of optimism.

Every day, there is tremendous progress being made in America — across technology, public policy, science and medicine, and much more — that will set current and future generations up for success. Our goal is to highlight these advancements, and tilt the scale of news and information from pessimism towards optimism.

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While the news media, politicians, both political parties and conspiracy theory groups are destabilizing America, we often lose sight of how we contribute to the hysteria as individuals, albeit unwittingly. In the process, we lose our ability to find optimism, opportunities, and meaning. Fortunately, it is still possible to learn from history and to regain one’s agency, self- empowerment, and life purpose.

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Unveiling the Mind of Terror - The Psychology and Seduction of Terrorism

Unveiling the Mind of Terror - The Psychology and Seduction of Terrorism

On this episode of The Optimistic American, hosts Dr. Emily Bashah and Paul Johnson are accompanied by Dr. John G Horgan, a preeminent psychologist, professor at Georgia State University, and is renowned for his deep insights into the psychology of terrorism. Join us as we explore the complex world of terrorist psychology, the nuances of radicalization, and the intriguing process of recruitment. Topics Discussed in This Video: - What is Terrorism and The Psychology Behind It: Dr. Horgan defines terrorism and discusses the psychological factors that drive individuals towards such extreme behaviors. Additionally, Dr. Emily Bashah discusses specific examples such as incel and jihadist ideologies. - How People Get Involved With Terrorist Groups: The conversation explores the roles of recruiters in the radicalization process, revealing how individuals are drawn into terrorist activities and the sophisticated tactics used to lure them. - The Contrast of Pessimism and Optimism: Reflecting contrasting viewpoints, Dr. Horgan articulates his pessimism about current counterterrorism strategies, while Paul Johnson discusses his optimism based on the resilience and ideals of American society. - Pathways to Disengagement from Terrorism: This segment delves into the possibilities and processes of disengagement from terrorist groups, discussing strategies for confronting and assisting those who are radicalized. - The Impact of Politics on American Psychology & Campus Chaos: This segment explores how political climates affect the psychology of Americans and the increasing tensions on college campuses driven by political and ideological conflicts. You can listen to this episode on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or Google Podcasts! Spotify: Apple Podcasts: Google Podcasts: We post new content every week so make sure to subscribe to stay in the loop. Learn more about The Optimistic American by checking out our website! Chapters: 00:00 - Introduction 02:06 - What is Terrorism & Ideology? 04:11 - The Psychology of A Terrorist 06:36 - Incel & Jihadism 09:37 - How People Get Involved w/ Terrorist Groups 16:31 - Terrorist Recruiters 26:24 - Why Are You Pessimistic About This? 29:19 - Reasons to be Optimistic 34:29 - Are Terrorist Groups a One Way Street? 38:47 - Confronting People Who Have Been Radicalized 46:19 - Politics and Its Effect on The Psychology of America 55:57 - State Sponsored Terrorism 1:00:50 - Chaos On College Campuses 1:14:54 - College Campuses, Terrorism, and Ideologies 1:17:19 - Anyone Can Be Drawn In… 1:18:42 - How To Protect Yourself 1:20:06 - Final Remarks & Conclusion