FROM Ron Schouten
Terrorism and America's Culture of Fear For weeks now, there's been saturation news coverage of violence in the US and around the world -- from Paris, to Colorado Springs to San Bernardino. The results include school closings from Los Angeles to rural Virginia and metal detectors at Disneyland and Universal studios. Public opinion polls show that such non-stop news coverage of violence has created a high rate of fear among Americans. President Obama has acknowledged it, and alarmist warnings of "terrorism" to come are a staple of Republican presidential campaigns. But an American is more likely to die from a fall in the bathtub than a terrorist bullet or bomb, and that's raised the specter of over-reaction. We look at the consequences of ignoring former President Franklin Roosevelt, who famously said, "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."
Why Don't Facts Matter? "Fake News" may have a long history, but social media and 21st Century politics have brought it front and center. One reason for its appeal and its power is the tendency of so many people to cling to their beliefs — even when confronted with contradictory evidence. Today, another look at the Emotional States of America.
Will the march for science politicize objective research? Protesters are gathering all over the country for tomorrow's Earth Day March for Science. Since President Trump has proposed massive cuts in basic scientific research, will the movement be perceived as partisan politics — whether scientists themselves like it or not?
Truth and Lies in Trumpland Donald Trump is using mis-information like no President has before him. It's an unprecedented challenge to the news media, and a potential threat to democracy. We hear how the "leader of all the people" is dividing Americans and confusing the rest of the world.