OTHER VOICES

The government’s good job

Posted Sept. 28, 2011, at 7:30 p.m.

There’s a lot more to this country than politics, and Americans’ belief in themselves and their government is not on the wane.

That conclusion might be drawn from the results of a recently released Associated Press-National Constitution Center poll.

The poll of 1,000 adults conducted Aug. 18-22 found that 63 percent believe the U.S. government is doing a good job of making sure we feel “safe, secure and free.” That is up 9 percentage points from a year ago. Even more — 72 percent — approve of the government’s performance in addressing both foreign and domestic threats. Only 53 percent believed so in 2010.

That statement of confidence in the nation’s capacity to protect us is in sharp contrast to the majority of poll respondents who expressed little or no confidence in the ability of politicians to effectively address serious issues such as health care and government spending.

In other words, we still have a lot of faith in the military and other government workers to look after the country’s best interests despite cynicism toward our elected leaders and their motives.

And we still believe in our own ability to help, with 70 percent of those polled saying they volunteer in order to try and make things better for their fellow Americans.

Americans’ can-do spirit is far from defeated.

Battle Creek (Mich.) Enquirer (Sept. 21)

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