POLL: New poll says political debate is getting less civil

We see it happening almost every day. Political debate here in America isn’t as civil as it used to be. And a new poll backs it up.

That poll from CBS News shows 68% of you believe the tone of our political discussion is getting worse. A recent example came from a Nebraska Democratic Party official talking about the recent shooting of Louisiana Republican Congressman Steve Scalise.

“I’m glad he got shat,” Phil Montag was recorded saying. I wish he was {expletive deleted} dead.”

That comment, which was recorded and then released by one of the people Montag was talking to, went viral. Montag was removed from his post by state party leaders because of those comments.

So what has happened to the tone of our political debate? SMU political scientist Cal Jillson told KTRH we don't know how to talk to each other anymore.

“You have a deeper gulf between Democrats and Republicans,” Jillson said. “There is more vitriol thrown over the chasm.”

Part of the problem, according to Jillson is polarization, which he believes has gotten worse over the years. Another part of the problem is social media.

“The effect of talk radio and cable news is enhanced by Facebook and other social media,” Jillson explained.

Back in the 1960’s and 1970’s if you wanted news, you had to wait until the evening news that was being given to you by the three major networks at the time. In today’s day and age of social media, Jillson says people aren’t waiting for content, and they are choosing what they want to take in.

“You had to listen to one of those networks for the news. You couldn’t select a news feed that supported only your own view,” Jillson said, adding that now, you can do exactly that. 

 

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