Letter: In today’s political climate, ‘truth forum’ a good idea

From: Bob Pitman


Political polarization seems to have reached new heights in the aftermath of the 2016 presidential election. The inability of Trump and Clinton supporters to find common ground clearly has been exacerbated by the very different perceptions of reality in which they are operate, as indicated by a recent Public Policy Polling national poll.

The poll reported that while most Americans believe the stock market has gone up during Barack Obama’s presidency, most Trump supporters believe it has gone down. (The Dow Jones industrial average has increased 2½ times.)

Most Americans believe unemployment has gone down under Obama, while 67 percent of Trump supporters think it has gone up. (Unemployment has decreased from 7.8 percent to the most recent rate of 4.6 percent.)

Forty percent of Trump supporters also believe their candidate won the popular vote. (Clinton has received at least 2.7 million more votes.)

Certainly, Hillary Clinton supporters also have been guilty of disseminating untrue rumors and promoting less than honest “facts” in this election.

Unfortunately, in this age of information (and misinformation) overload, it is possible to find support for any opinion, however outrageous.

Perhaps the road to greater unity and constructive dialogue could be furthered if there was some kind of bipartisan “truth forum” whose pronouncements held the confidence of both parties. Such a development would not end healthy debates about polices that are best for the country. But it could provide a much better foundation for them to occur than what we are seeing today.