A dozen years ago, David Longanecker wrote an article in Change, “A Tale of Two Pities,” that described the colliding perspectives of two communities—those who provide higher education and those who create and sustain the policy environment in which it functions. Each of these communities is committed to ensuring that Americans have broad ac- cess to high-quality postsecondary education. But each often perceives the other’s views and actions as antithetical to its own, thereby undercutting progress toward their shared goal.
This article, with two knowledgeable and experienced coauthors, reviews the evolution of the “two pities” dynamic presented 12 years ago and describes the current situation. Unfortunately, not much has changed.