Geer argues for the benefit of negative advertising in "In Defense of Negativity", there appears to be more evidence to the contrary. Increased levels of personal attacks, deceptive and manipulated information, and subtle racial comments have become commonplace in American politics. Even though Obama can counter such narratives on his web sites and in media statements, for those who doubt Obama or are looking for confirmation of their skepticism can cling to relevant narratives and ignore contradictory information. Is Obama the most adamant and vocal Christian ever? No. Does he incorporate religion and traditional Judeo-Christian values into his politics as strongly as others? No. But does that mean that people have the right to doubt his Christianity? Furthermore, what does this say about our country when being a Muslim is a derogatory identification that precludes one from the presidency?
The truth is that negative campaigning increases cynicism, allows for the spread of misleading or outright false information, and creates a culture of division. My NCA experience represents for me the negative effects that I have studied being realized. It is one thing to read about the racial connotations of the William "Willie" Horton advertisement and it is another to encounter someone who truly believes what is nothing more than a conspiracy theory that survives only through the radical echo chambers that exist online. With low voter turnout and vicious character attacks from SuperPACs and 527s, I hope that negative campaigning will eventually reach its peak and disappear. For the sake of democracy, a healthy public sphere, and unity in the face of elections, the fostering of a negative political culture must end.