By Paul HitlinMark Jurkowitz and Amy Mitchell In a period marked by Supreme Court deliberations on the subject, the news media coverage provided a strong sense of momentum towards legalizing same-sex marriage, according to a new study by the Pew Research Center. Stories with more statements supporting same-sex marriage outweighed those with more statements opposing it by a margin of roughly 5-to In the coverage studied, the central argument among proponents of same-sex marriage was one of civil rights.
Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. Change is wrought by those willing to lead or force others toward it. Which is why we are skeptical that most people truly believe every position they express.
Do most people legitimately disagree with one another? Or are they merely conforming to supposedly dominant ideas?
Though there are legitimate disagreementswe contend that modern American political tribalism has been artificially inflated by group-based conformity. Most Americans are not impassioned ideologues, neither coopted by Soros nor swayed by Koch.
People have better things to do.
And yet when it comes to specific issues, people are quick to take sides. Here, we describe how a small group of dedicated partisans have come to dominate the political scene, stoking the flames of mistrust and fomenting political tribalism.
Preference Falsifiers and Political Ringleaders One of the most important concepts for understanding social behavior is preference falsification. Developed by economist Timur Kuran, preference falsification occurs when an individual publicly misrepresents their private views to fit into a social group.
It is conformity for the sake of social self-interest. We falsify our preferences to maintain or improve our standing within a group. Conformity to group preferences yields approval, affection, and advancement within the group. But preference falsification raises more questions than it answers.
Why do the vast majority of us, despite our supposedly moderate beliefs, adopt more partisan viewpoints? How did these viewpoints become mainstreamed? Who decides the rewards and punishments for conformity and dissent? In short, partisans run the show. Those who can drive manual shift cars can drive all automatic cars.
Thus, the flexible manual shift drivers adapt to the inflexible drivers who can operate only automatic shift cars. Taleb describes a Pareto distribution whereby a small number of highly inflexible individuals determine how a society is run.
We might assume that the nature of democracy would mean the minority acquiesces to the whims of the majority. Committed ideologues are unshakable in their beliefs, unlikely to move toward the middle. On the other hand, moderates, less encumbered by bias, are more open to new ideas. Moderates are more likely to move toward the extremes than partisans are to move toward the middle.
Given their flexibility, moderates tend to adopt the preferences of the intransigent minority. But how does the moderate majority come to accept the preferences of an extreme minority? Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute provide an answer.
The researchers, using mathematical modeling, found that there is a tipping point for when opinions held by a committed minority spread to the rest of the population. For a viewpoint to become popular, a minimum number of group members must first adopt it.
Once this threshold is reached, the viewpoint becomes self-sustaining with more and more adopting it. Thus, the preferences of an intransigent minority are mainstreamed once enough moderates adopt them.
This makes intuitive sense as the actions of those in Washington drive the news cycle. Whether they be party leaders, activists, or intellectuals, these individuals are the heart and soul of a political movement.
There is a lot of talk about hope, change, and making America great again. Slogans are indicators of what a party and political movement might become under a new leader.
Often, a party comes to resemble the person who leads it. The leader determines what policies to support, what enemies to hate, what morals to espouse, and what hills to die on.«Lack of Livejournalling | Main | Happy Devil Day!.
June 05, Defending Marriage From the Marriage Bigots. Look, am I mad or something? I look around and about at people talking about same-sex marriage, and it seems that everyone is accepting the discussion on the marriage bigots' terms, rather than reality.
"The persons named and described hereunder have given notice to me of their intended marriage, namely Do Re Me of River Drive, New York, New York , USA (single) and Maiow iridis-photo-restoration.com (divorced) of Tennessee Drive, New York, New York Apr 07, · Vermont on Tuesday became the fourth state to legalize gay marriage -- and the first to do so with a legislature's vote.
Vermont was the first state to legalize civil unions for same-sex couples. Homosexuality: Opposing Viewpoints David Bender & Bruno Leone, Series Editors William Dudley, Book Editor 2. Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center SACRAMENTO -- Gay Marriage Bill Change Survives Amendment makes veto likely Tuesday, August 13, Greg Lucas, Chronicle Sacramento Bureau 2.
House Votes Against Gay Marriages. Dream Moods is the only free online source you need to discover the meanings to your dreams. Check out our ever expanding dream dictionary, fascinating discussion forums, and other interesting topics related to dreaming. An Opposing Viewpoints® Series Greenhaven Press, Inc.
San Diego, California Sex Education David Bender, Publisher Bruno Leone, Executive Editor Bonnie Szumski, Editorial Director Brenda Stalcup, Managing Editor Scott Barbour, Senior Editor Tamara L. Roleff, Book Editor Sex Education Frontmatter 2/12/04 AM Page 3.