Groundbreaking Study Concludes Shouting Over Each Other Does Not Promote Understanding


donald-trump
Gage Skidmore via flickr.com

Want to find yourself making a really extensive snap judgment about someone? The next time you’re out and about, and you meet a new person, ask them which way they lean politically. Assuming they answer you directly — instead of staring dumbfounded at the person with the audacity to ask such a personal question — you’ll find that based solely on a one-word response you’ll make a heap of decisions about that person’s character.

Political affiliation counts for a lot to the people of America. Perhaps that’s always been true, but never more so than now when the ideological gaps between Republicans and Democrats appear more pronounced than ever before. You don’t have to look too far to see that the political scene in the United States is looking less like legislation and more like a street fight.

A day on Capitol Hill looks like a dance fight between the Sharks and the Jets, only less rhythmic and with way more potential to cause harm. Also, there are more white people.

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As the animosity between Republicans and Democrats reaches an all-time high, political decisions are becoming less about expressing political ideas and more about sticking with your team. Even worse, political affiliation has increasingly become about taking a vote away from those other assholes.

After all, Republicans understand that the Democratic Party has been overrun by niche interest groups who just want to turn the world super gay and Democrats know that Republicans are a cabal of wealthy men who want to slice the US up into separate fiefdoms.

That’s all fine, except for one thing: you’re totally wrong.

A new study from researchers at Florida State University reveals that, by and large, members of both parties have absolutely no clue what their political rivals are thinking. If you’ve been making “educated” decisions based on what you think you know about Republicans and Democrats, it’s time to reevaluate your criteria.

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Dear Republicans, Democrats Aren’t Gay Welfare Abusers

According to primary researchers Douglas Ahler and Gaurav Sood, when questioned, Republicans estimated that more than 35 percent of the Democratic Party (https://socialnewsdaily.com/71692/democrats-picking-out-curtain-for-new-congress-setting-impeachment-date/) was comprised of non-Christians, black people, LGBT folks, and union members. That certainly jives with the way that Dems are portrayed by their opponents on major news outlets and on social media, as obsessive big government types who want to make all your decisions for you.

More often than not, that whole mess of diabolical collusion is boiled down to a single sentiment. Democrats are crazy.

https://twitter.com/TheBadDadder/status/1015351304619745280

And don’t take that emoji-loving tweeter’s word for it.

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1015278594795417600

Ask a Republican about what they think motivates the liberals side of the aisle, and they’ll tell you that crazy Democrats want to expand the size of the government into infinity and make honest, hard-working Americans pay the price for it.

In truth, atheists and agnostics make up nine percent of the Democratic Party. The LGBT community comprises six percent. Only eleven percent of the party is in a trade union, and just one-quarter of Democrats are black. Another way to say that is: the vast majority of the Democratic Party fall into a big old gray area filled with people who just want to do their thing, pay their taxes, and ensure that the people of America have the same opportunity.

Dear Democrats, Republicans Aren’t All Sociopathic Rich People

Don’t get all cocksure about how open-minded you are, either, fellow Democrats. Admit it, when you think about the average Republican, you picture Patrick Bateman from American Psycho.

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The report from Ahler and Sood bore out that impression pretty accurately. When asked about what demographics made up the Republican Party, Democrats said that the GOP was precisely 44 percent senior citizens, 44 percent Evangelicals, 44 percent Southerners, and 44 percent people making more than $250,000 a year.

Let’s just take a second to think about that. According to the average Democrat, almost half the Republican Party — and therefore about a quarter of the American population — is filled with rich, old Evangelical Christians who live in the South. Even worse, those rich jerks want to ensure that no one else is able to practice any kind of lifestyle that deviates from those strict guidelines.

Explaining all that every time you say the word “Republican” is a mouthful. So, mostly, Democrats reduce Republicans to stock tyrants in training.

In fact, only about a third of Republicans live in the South or consider themselves Evangelical Christians. Even more surprising, a scant two percent of the Republican Party brings home $250K or more each year. Considering that 5 percent of American society makes more than $200,000 annually, simple math will tell you that there are just as many wealthy liberals as there are wealthy conservatives.

In other words, most of the Republican Party falls into that same big gray area populated by Democrats. Their guiding ethos is simple. They want to be left alone to do their thing without government involvement. Ask most American conservatives, and they’ll tell you that less government involvement will mean more personal freedom for everyone, including the LGBT and minority community.

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More Fun With Numbers

Okay, one last stat for you: If you ask your average person on the street, you’ll find that fifty-four percent of Americans support open conversation and compromise in government (and in life). That’s compared with just eighteen percent of zealots who believe it’s more important to stick rigidly to your beliefs even if they impede progress.

In other words, most Americans support active conversation and working toward a middle ground more than they root for more legislative combat. When it comes down to it, most people want their politicians to be dull public servants, not ideological crusaders.

Just something to think about the next time you’re about to launch into a political rant about how the other side is chock full of people who just want to push their agenda forward with no regard for the public well-being.

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Do Not Believe the Hype, You Are Not Under Attack

It’s easy to get swept up in the current of ongoing political attacks. Every single day, there’s a new barrage from both sides. Republicans and Democrats alike are so entrenched in debasing their opponents that negative partisanship runs rampant. The name of the game has become victory, not legislation.

At least, that’s the case if you watch CNN, Fox News, and any of the other networks and news outlets that thrive on chaos and aggression. A steady diet of either liberal or conservative ideology overseen by one of these outlets or a mixture of a few is enough to turn even the most open-minded person into a raving lunatic. No matter which way you lean, devoutly partisan forms of media aimed at Republicans and Democrats all focus on one major theme: your way of life is under attack. Love the environment? A Republican is coming to frack the balls off your local park. Looking for a new job? Some nasty Democrat is out there conspiring to smuggle an illegal alien over the border to get their first (and for cheaper).

Total immersion in either party is enough to leave even someone with a keen mind drowning in the belief that someone is coming to attack in the middle of the night (whether they’re illegal immigrants or Trump’s secret police).

It’s just not true. Don’t get me wrong: you should absolutely participate in government and vote your conscience at every level, but if you’re doing so under the auspice of spiting someone else, you’re not only wasting your vote, you’re fighting an enemy that largely does not exist.

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