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Surprise! Americans agree on more things than they realize

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Many Americans assume the rest of the country doesn’t share their political and policy priorities — but they’re often wrong, according to new polling by Populace.

The survey reveals that despite growing political polarization, Americans share similar long-term goals and priorities for the country, Axios reported.

Regardless of their political affiliation, nine issues showed up in the Top 15 priorities for Democrat and Republican voters.

Biden and Trump voters both expressed a sense of urgency to address five: access to high quality health care; safety in communities and neighborhoods; criminal justice reforms; help for the middle class; and modernized infrastructure, Axios reported.

This news surprises me, but it shouldn’t.

It surprises me to think that we are closer together on major issues than the media and social media leads to us believe. It shouldn’t surprise me because, when I take the time to sit down and listen to someone with an opposing view, many times we discover we share the same concerns, but prefer different approaches to resolving problems.

But we all want the same problems resolved. Ironically, Axios noted that priorities differed very little along gender, ethnicity, income and educational lines.

The documentary Social Dilemma, which is available on Netflix, shows how social media is specifically engineered to keep people isolated in their own echo chambers. The system is intentionally designed to keep people angry just to keep them returning to vent their opinions.

But, every time they return, they are shown specific things to either keep them angry or reinforce their own beliefs. There is rarely an opportunity for both sides to share information to discover their similarities.

It’s also politically expedient for career politicians to keep people isolated in their own silos in order for the leaders to retain their political power and donations.

I suspect that if Americans were to ever talk to each other without shouting, they’d find out that most of us really do share similar concerns and could probably work toward implementing mutually agreed upon solutions once the manipulators are removed from the discussion.

The full story and poll results can be found at www.axios.com.

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Greg Gerber

A native of Wisconsin who moved to Arizona in 2009, Greg Gerber is a DODO -- Dad of Daughters Only -- to three grown daughters. He worked as a journalist for many years before pursuing a career as a faith-based writer, author, coach and speaker. Greg is the author of Pornocide: How Lust is Killing Your Faith, Stealing Your Joy and Destroying Your Life.

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