“Is the American dream dead or alive?” was the focus of the premiere episode of Point Taken, a new PBS debate series that takes on one question each week with a rotating panel of guests.
“Point Taken will bring fresh and diverse voices to the table, providing a break from the ‘usual suspects’ on any given topic,” the series promises on its homepage. Guests on Wednesday’s show, moderated by host Carlos Watson, OZY’s CEO and founder, included investor/finance pundit Monica Mehta, Boston Herald Radio executive producer Tom Shattuck, Reason EIC Matt Welch and journalist and author Isabel Wilkerson.
Point Taken describes itself as multiplatform, and along with the usual Facebooking and Twitter hashtagging, viewers can weigh in online in polls that assess whether their views have changed following the debate, and ask viewers to choose the next debate topic from an array of potential options.
To accompany the premiere debate, series producer WGBH Boston teamed up with Marist to see where Americans stood on that question. In general terms, the poll found that a majority of Americans think the American dream is still alive and kicking, 58 to 32 percent. And since everyone (or at least millennials) is over millennial coverage, let’s talk about Gen X, who is the generation most optimistic about the state of the American dream, 62 to 34.
Marist will continue to conduct polling around each week’s topic.