EP 422 Can Americans Rebuild Trust in Each Other and Our Politics?

In the aftermath of the presidential election of 2020, we seem to be more polarized than ever before–fully retreated into political camps and tossing verbal grenades at the opposition.  Our guest, Kevin Vallier, a political philosopher from Bowling Green University argues in his new book, ‘Trust in a Polzarized Age’, that as polarization is rising, Americans trust each other and our institutions less now than any point since measurement began in the 1960’s.  Through the thicket of political haze and misinformation that abounds on social media, he still argues that there is a way back to a rebuild of social and political trust.  We have to resist the urge to think about political life as fundamentally good versus bad and reinvest in liberal political and economic institutions and reforming our electoral process as a way to rebuild trust.  With all that’s gone on in this recent period, will that be enough?  One disturbing sign is that the least trusting generation is made up of young people.  Those concerns are likely to harden in adulthood, leading to a low-trust future.  We discuss whether this cold war among American citizens could turn hotter.