BOSTON (CBS) – What’s the one thing almost everyone agrees they can’t stand about our political culture?
That’s an easy one – politicians who don’t tell the truth.
No one likes to be lied to. And when our leaders play that game – claiming, for instance, that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction that threaten us, or insisting “if you like your doctor you can keep your doctor” – it leaves a wicked bad taste.
The two major-party presidential candidates either don’t get this or just ignore it, at their peril, I think.
Hillary Clinton’s spin about her e-mail lapses, or any one of Donald Trump’s countless whoppers, don’t seem to be growing their base.
And sometimes, it seems they just flat-out don’t know or care what the truth is.
By now you might have heard about Donald Trump Jr.’s tasteless tweet of a picture of a bowl full of Skittles, with text that reads: “If I had a bowl of Skittles and I told you just three would kill you, Would you take a handful? That’s our Syrian refugee problem.”
Trump Jr., tasteless and uninformed? That wasn’t surprising.
But the Trump campaign issued a statement claiming that junior was just “speaking the truth.”
No, he wasn’t.
He was repeating a crude smear of a whole class of people who have almost entirely uninvolved in domestic terrorism.
It’s true – the truth is often complicated, and doesn’t always support political pandering. To define Trump Jr.’s garbage as “truth” is to debase the term.
But all too often, that seems to be the best our political elites can do.
Listen to Jon’s commentary: