WASHINGTON (AP) Americans don't trust each other anymore.
For four decades, a gut-level ingredient of democracy - trust in the other fellow - has been quietly draining away.
These days, only one-third of Americans say most people can be trusted. Half felt that way in 1972, when the General Social Survey first asked the question.
Forty years later, an AP-GfK poll finds a record high of nearly two-thirds say "you can't be too careful" in dealing with people.
Does it matter?
Social scientists say it does.
What's known as "social trust" brings about good things.
A society where it's easier to compromise or make a deal. Where people are willing to work with those who are different from them for the common good. Where trust even appears to promote economic growth.
To comment, the following rules must be followed:
If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator.
Flagging does not guarantee removal.
Decisions to suspend or unsuspend accounts are made by Station Moderators.
Questions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please provide detailed information.
Viewers with disabilities can get assistance accessing this station's FCC Public Inspection File by contacting the station with the information listed below. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, 888-835-5322 (TTY), or email@example.com.