Thursday, April 7, 2011

Trends in Political Party

Today (or rather yesterday, since I'm going to queue this up to post tomorrow) in Civics I was sitting at my desk working on some stuff for chemistry (yes, I see the discontinuity. It's true.) and these two people who sit near me (one of whom I have known for nearly five years and the other I've just known of) were mock-arguing and saying they were going to have a fight and such.
So the girl (the one I've known of) says "Olivia'd back me up, right?" and the guy says "No. I've known her for ages. She wouldn't fight. Right, Olivia?"
And I smiled and said "Mhm."
And the girl said "Why not?"
And the guy said "Because she's a pacifist." (at which point some conversation of which I don't remember the exact words happened with someone else who basically also said she wouldn't fight)
And then they guy said "It's because you're both Democrats."
And I smiled again and said "Yep."
And he, being the Republican that he is, laughed.

(I also wanted to say "Just remember that I've been grading your papers for five years. I might not want to fight you, but I'm boss at non-violent protest." Except I didn't.)

Which of course made me think "there is a blog post in this."

Now most of my friends have very liberal political views, and most of my friends are generally pacifists, but is there such a strong connection to really say that Democrat = Pacifist? (and Democrat and liberal aren't even always the same, since Democrat is a party and liberal is a perspective.) I don't actually know.

The joke, of course, is that "liberal" is synonymous with "awesome." But while that's fun to say with your liberal friends, we all know there are plenty of exceptions on both ends (and if you're a non-liberal, the people that fit this rule ARE the exceptions- ha).

So I guess what I'm wondering if how much of the correlations we joke about are actually true. Like my best friend once observed "People who are Team Edward tend to be Republicans, and people who are Team Jacob tend to be Democrats." (guess where she falls when she bothers to care either way.)

What does being a Democrat or having liberal views actually mean? I can give you an issue and you can tell me what the people of each side tend to think about that issue.

But how much of all the other similarities is coincidence, and how much actually comes with the description?
Like how most nerdfighters are Harry Potter fans. It's not required to like Harry Potter. It's just that the vast, vast majority of us do.

So, More-Politically-Knowledgeable-Than-I-Am Readers Of Mine, discuss.


  1. I've just been reading through your blog backwards (because reading it the other way is for chumps) and decided I'd comment on this post. It's only a couple days old, after all.
    Anyhow, I think that political party and political views don't have so much to do with personality as one might think. Yeah, there are stereotypes and trends, but I've been shocked several times in the past to find out my friends were conservatives, or creationists, or even *gasp!* State fans. I thought I had them pegged based on their personality, but their actual views did not follow the general trends. However, I do notice that liberals tend to be more considerate, peaceable individuals on the whole. Just look at the economic theories: the central tenets of socialism espouse the view that people should work for the common good and care for one another. Capitalism espouses a more practical self-serving line of work with the view that success breeds success. Both are noble views, but they also point to a fundamentally different kind of person behind them.
    Of course, my experiences aren't concrete data. And my thoughts aren't in the best shape at 10:11 pm, especially considering it took 6 tries to get "thoughts" spelled correctly. But still, food for thought.

  2. 1. I'm glad you're reading. Like what you see?
    2. I agree with you, so I don't have much of a response to your actual comment, but it also made me laugh.
    3. If I'm too "you readers have been around for ages and therefore I don't have to explain things anymore" and you're confused about something, ask.


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