I think we’re very lucky that both presidential candidates have the potential to bring more intelligence to the position, and that the excitement seems to be getting more of us paying attention to what our elected officials are doing for (and against) us. I’ve certainly never been more interested in a presidential race, and access to information about candidates and issues seems better than ever.
That said, both campaigns and supporting organizations have ensured this will be another dirty race to the White House. Misinformation, subtle distortions of information, and outright lies are commonplace on TV, the web, and particularly my inbox. It can be very difficult to decode the messages and research the Facts, and, even when you do, the Facts may not include vital context that provides the Truth. I’m pretty regularly seeing editorials cast views of history depicting a candidate (or entire particular political parties!) as the root of all modern problems, providing easy answers for well-meaning people in search of Truth, but the presence of facts does not imply Truth. People forget their skeptic hats when facts seem to so beautifully support their views.
It takes a lot of personal research to get a decent picture of history with proper context, and to find the motivations behind peoples’ past actions, and, unfortunately, it’s far beyond what most people have the patience for. I’m sorry, but we need to do our homework. If you don’t have time to find the real truth behind a claim, you might be better off disregarding it completely.