Just as a particular subset of Americans proved unusually receptive to fake news and conspiracy in the 1940s, it may be time to acknowledge that a particular subset of Americans, today, has grown unhinged from reality.
The question is: Are America’s national institutions today strong enough to form a bulwark against the disinformation? Will independent news outlets drown out the cacophony of fake news sites and presidential falsehoods? Will rates of electoral participation remain high, or will they drop due to voter disenfranchisement and resignation? Will public schools produce a generation of Americans armed with powers of discernment?I
f it wasn’t already, Pizzagate should be a wakeup call. To understand just how divorced a populace can become from the truth, one need look no further back than seventy-five years.