I know this is old news but old news has a way of taking its time getting to me, hence its name.
Apparently Americans are more likely to vote for a black person and a woman over a Mormon but the Catholics have it in the bag. And an atheist stands no chance in hell. (ha!) But, rest assured, my gay friends, you have a better chance at getting voted into office than an atheist.
I wonder how many folks currently in office are gay. Surely there must be some. And I wonder how many folks are gay atheists. How about a gay, atheist and female? And I wonder if things would be different if people could tell someone was gay just by looking at them, or if you could spot an atheist in a crowd of people. Do people see this belief and/or orientation as something sneaky and are therefore afraid of it? Or does it really just boil down to bigotry and hatred? What are people afraid of? That a gay person is going to run for president and change our national anthem to “My Heart Will Go On?” Are they afraid that the atheists are going to take over and invite the devil in a blue dress into the oval office for a blowjob? Does it really just boil down to the fact that our nation really is just one nation under God? (As long as it’s a Catholic God, of course.)
This poll depresses me a little bit.
Not a Catholic God an Evangelical God
I was referring to the poll, which stated that 95% would vote for a Catholic.
I can’t make any judgement on this survey. If the question stated that the candidate was in your political party and supported your core political beliefs (whatever those may be) and then had one of those attributes, then there would be an issue.
I don’t think this reflects fear, however. I think the results suggest that people assume that these labels suggest additional political and cultural positions.
If an atheist believed in small government, welfare cuts, tax cuts and farm subsidies (go figure), I bet she would get a lot more votes in middle America than Ted Kennedy.
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately especially since I’m finally reading Freakonomics (Finally). Been thinking about the fact that most humans will say one thing when pressed in order to look less bigoted and then something entirely different when they know no one is looking and will hold them accountable.
That being said, and given I don’t care much for polls in the first place, I wonder how accurate it is. Were the people asked directly? Were they phoned? Were they mailed? Did they have the idea that whoever was asking the questions might know who they are and what their names are? That skews ones answer for sure. So I’m not sure I am willing to believe this absolutely.
That goes for the flipside as well. Some folks might say, to your face, “Sure! I would vote black!” But when they enter the voting booths come 2008, and no one is looking, judging, they might do something entirely different.
We all want people to believe we’re willing to accept change and difference but I’m not so sure that’s the case when it comes right down to it. I hope that it is! I really do.
Do people even know what an atheist is? Many average joes probably don’t know the difference between an atheist and an agnostic. Or the difference between the belief sytems of a Lutheran, Methodist, Episcopalian, Mormon, Presbyterian, Baptist, or a Catholic. Hell, I don’t!
I’m just continually bummed by the fact that politicians and the media ignore the smaller, yet perhaps more relevant, urban professional demographic that contains the bulk of the doers and thinkers in this country and continually panders to segment of the population that simply enjoys the fruits of the former’s labor and creative thinking.
Sidenote: I saw a very disturbing piece on a national news program the other night. It was on “Purity Balls” – which are semi-formal daddy-daughter dances for teenage girls where they are encouraged by their fathers to sign abstinence contracts. The program claimed that some of these events are funded by the government as part of W’s abstinence campaigns. All the fathers interviewed were creepy (a little too much “sit on daddy’s lap” for my taste) and the daughters seemed as clueless as you’d expect for a teenager. Apparently 88% of all abstinence contracts are broked. No duh.
Nora, I want to ask for the writeup on said news program but it might make my head implode.
I went off the other night about the whole abstinence thing. It’s because of this book. I was blown away by the number of abortions there are in this country and I’m as pro choice as they come.
Why has sex become this absolutely OFF limits thing? Abstinence? Are you kidding me? NO grown adult can possibly believe that they can convince a horny teenager to stay completely away from having sex. It’s an idealist viewpoint, one that will never, ever, ever come to work.
Instead, we should be educating our kids on sex. We should be teaching them about safe sex. We shouldn’t pretend it doesn’t happen and then when it does happen and when countless undereducated teenagers are having abortions when they inevitably get knocked up, (even the religious, mind you!) start having abortions we get pissed off and say that’s out of the question?
Why not address the root of the problem. You don’t like abortion, f*cking teach your kids how to use a condom! A lot of them going to have sex whether you like it or not.
I get SO FREAKING PISSED off ABOUT THE abstinence argument. I’m worked up again…
Charlie, you wrote: “I don’t think this reflects fear, however. I think the results suggest that people assume that these labels suggest additional political and cultural positions.”
I’m thinking about that a little more and I guess I can see that being the case. If one were to look solely at this poll and apply a whole bunch of generalization, that would mean that half the people polled are more conservative and the other half, liberal. Which does kind of represent America’s political climate right now, right? I’m totally guessing based on what you stated above.
But I’m a little shocked that “A woman” ranked below both Black and a Jewish. This comes as a surprise to me. I’m starting to wonder whether or not everyone polled had very specific candidates in mind. (Obama, Bloomberg, Hillary.)
I’m totally rambling. Man, I hate it when I do that.
I know I’m just sticking my head in the sand, but I really hate thinking about things like this. It just depresses me so much. On the upside, you inspired a new portmanteau: Gaytheist.