During the Democratic Party’s first TV debate on Wednesday, the ten candidates involved were asked to name the single greatest geopolitical threat facing the United States. While climate change, China and the nuclear threat all received several nods, terrorism surprisingly didn’t get a mention. Whether that’s because the terrorism threat has really faded in recent years or simply owed to the fact that new, more pressing threats have emerged remains up for debate though.
When 2,200 Americans were recently asked about major problems faced by their country, terrorism still registered near the top of the long list of challenges ahead. According to the survey, which was part of the Disinformation in Society Report
, published by the Institute for Public Relations, health care costs, drug abuse and crime are the only domestic issues more pressing than the threat of terrorism.
Interestingly, misinformation and disinformation, the difference being that the latter is deliberately misleading or biased, are both seen as major problems by the majority of Americans as well. 65 and 63 percent of the respondents considered the (deliberate) spreading of false information as a major problem for their country, putting the issue ahead of the economy, racial discrimination and illegal immigration on people’s minds.