[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/14/art.clinton.polarized.ap.jpg caption=" Former President Bill Clinton addresses the National Governors Association."]
FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
Former President Bill Clinton has a warning for all of us: he says this country is becoming more and more divided.
Speaking to the National Governors Association, Clinton said that even though the Democratic primary produced historic results with the final candidates being a woman, his wife, and an African-American man, he still sees a larger problem.
Clinton believes Americans are becoming more polarized as a nation. He says we're growing farther apart from each other and are "hunkering down in communities of like-mindedness, and it affects our ability to manage difference." Clinton says Americans are separating themselves by choosing to live with people they agree with.
He used ideas from a book called "The Big Sort" by Bill Bishop for this speech. Bishop found that in the 1976 election, only 20% of U.S. counties voted for Jimmy Carter or President Ford by more than a 20% margin. But by 2004 nearly half of the nation's counties voted for John Kerry or President Bush by that same margin.
President Clinton also reminded the governors that the issues they're dealing with today are similar to those faced by Teddy Roosevelt a century ago, including inequality among the rich and poor, immigration and energy. But Clinton says he thinks we will deal with these issues and enter a period of light, not darkness.
Here’s my question to you: Do you agree with President Clinton that America is becoming more divided?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
David from Orlando, Florida writes:
Let’s see, 85% of the people think we are on the wrong track. McSame wants to stay on the wrong track. Obama says he wants to change direction. Yet the polls are still saying both candidates are in a dead heat – just as they have been for 8 years. Either the pointer on the opinion poll meter has been stuck for 8 years, or we are terminally divided.
Bob from Richmond, Virginia writes:
Yes, Jack, I believe he is correct. By the way, did he mention how he and his wife contributed to and tried to use this divisiveness to their advantage with their comments during the Democratic primaries?
Absolutely, we are more divided. And, as they say, everything comes from the top. The Bush administration has always emphasized the "with us or against us" stance. An 8-year diet of divisiveness and division has left us here. Republican or Democrat? Christian or Muslim? Have or have-not? And sadly, we are all watchful and careful.
No, I don't feel we are more divided! And that’s because Obama won in Iowa. As a black American, that surprised the hell out of me and everyone I know. It opened our eyes that America is open for a change, in the form of a woman or a black man.
Life is filled with stress. Home, family and friends relieve that stress. I find nothing wrong with living in communities of people who are similar to you and share your values. Rich and poor folk alike and all those in between have been doing this for decades. We're not more divided. It's just more in the forefront.
Deborah from Indiana writes:
Yes, we are more divided. And what's worse, we can't agree to disagree and listen to one another's point of view. We've lost our ability to listen to someone's ideas, think about them, and discuss the opinion rationally… Everyone has the notion that it is "my way or the highway."