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Philadelphia

Democrats are taking a much different tack at their convention here than the Republicans did last week in Cleveland.

The theme has been that America is still a great country, but could be even greater with visionary leadership. That’s a counter to GOP nominee Donald Trump’s call to “Make America Great Again,” and the detailed inventory he delivered of its failures.

While that helps them in depicting Trump as angry and bitter and bringing a message of doom and gloom, it risks misreading the concerns of the electorate.

Republicans chocked their convention lineup with police chiefs and generals who addressed terrorism, national security and law and order; Democrats are mostly skirting those issues in favor of focusing on economic inequality and righting a “rigged system.”

But ISIS is stepping up its terrorist attacks, striking across Europe and other areas of the world nearly every day. And Americans are jumpy about the recent rash of domestic terrorism and the targeting of police officers by extremists acting in twisted sympathy with the Black Lives Matter movement.

Security and safety are pressing issues that shouldn’t be ignored at the convention. Democrats need to show they are aware of the anxiety and recognize the real dangers, and have a plan to deal with both.

Trump was fear mongering in Cleveland, sure. But it doesn’t mean the fears he was exploiting aren’t real or justified. What do Democrats intend to do to address them?

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