Lack of civility
Whether they rally behind Fox News’ Glenn Beck to “Restore Honor” or Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart to “Restore Sanity,” Americans agree on one thing: our political system has a civility problem.The rest of the article is here.
Four out of five Americans, regardless of party or religious affiliation, think the lack of respectful discourse in our political system is a serious problem, according to a PRRI/RNS Religion News Poll released Thursday (Nov. 11).
The findings echo sentiments expressed by a range of religious leaders, including Richard J. Mouw, president of Fuller Theological Seminary and author of “Uncommon Decency: Christian Civility in an Uncivil World,” and Rabbi Steve Gutow, president of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs.
Alarmed by the 2010 campaign season, which 4 in 10 Americans consider more negative than past elections, Mouw, Gutow and others are calling for a kinder, gentler tone—even on hot-button topics like Islamophobia, homosexuality or abortion.
“We’ve had heated public debates before, but the level of discourse in this campaign and even following the campaign has been atrocious,” Mouw said, citing as an example Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s pledge to prevent President Obama’s reelection, as opposed to advocating for policy shifts.
“There’s a real hostility now, and Christians with very strong and more conservative convictions really don’t seem to be contributing much to a civil discourse and a calming of the heated discussions in the larger culture,” Mouw said.