In addition to the partisan divide that exists in this country, there also has developed an unfortunate divide at other levels. The election results will further highlight this problem.
The race divide is well documented and has increased. Blacks and Latinos will give near-universal support to President Obama, while a majority of white voters will go for Mitt Romney. Younger voters overwhelmingly support Obama; older voters back Romney. There will be a consistent divide between the sexes, with a majority of women supporting Obama and a majority of men siding with Romney. The income divide continues to grow, as lower-income voters support the president and wealthier ones endorse Romney.
There also is a spiritual divide in this country. Folks who have a strict interpretation of religion and faith will go for Romney, and voters who don’t attend church regularly or have a more progressive view of spirituality will choose Obama. Further, there is a marriage divide, especially among women, in which single women will vote for the president and many married women will vote for Romney. And then there’s the geographic and community divide. The large urban centers will vote overwhelmingly for Obama, and small towns and rural communities will be just as enthusiastic for Romney. Most of the voters on the East and West coasts will vote for Obama, while the middle of the country by and large will go for Romney.
We are becoming more a nation of tribes in which we align ourselves with a certain side and are unwilling to unite for the benefit of the country as a whole. As many sociologists and historians have pointed out, democracy can’t survive or function in tribal cultures. We are on a fast road to a broken democracy with an inability to reach consensus on the big issues.
There are many things to blame for this: A media culture that seems to reward and encourage bitter and rancorous communication, a political culture that puts party over country, an unwillingness for all sides to sacrifice for everyone’s benefit and a winner-take-all attitude at every level in which compromise and agreement are seen as signs of weakness as opposed to strength."