(National Sentinel) Divided States: In the era of Barack Obama and Donald Trump, Americans have become more politically polarized and divided as ever — at least since the Civil War, a new study has found.
As reported by Politico, the study by the Pew Research Center even found that political polarization is dictating where Americans choose to live:
The gap between Democrats and Republicans continues to expand on questions about the role of government, race, immigration — even where they prefer to live. Each party has become more ideologically homogeneous, and more hostile toward the opinions of members of the other party.
Pew began asking 10 questions on “political values” — on government regulations to benefits for the poor to racial discrimination — in 1994.
The average gap between self-identified Democrats and Republicans on these questions in 1994? Fifteen points. Today, it’s 36 points, up from 33 percent in 2014.
“Partisan divides across political values … [are] wider than at any point in the past,” said Jocelyn Kiley, the associate director for research at the Pew Research Center.
Both parties have grown more ideologically pure over the past decade:
In 2004, 68 percent of Democrats were more consistently liberal than the median Republican, and 70 percent of Republicans were more consistently conservative than the media Democrat.
Today, virtually all Democrats, 97 percent, are more liberal than the median Republican, and 95 percent of Republicans are more conservative than the median Democrat.
This division is manifesting itself in every aspect of our culture: In academia, in entertainment, in society, in politics. It’s so bad that NFL players are openly disrespecting the flag and National Anthem, while others mock those who were killed in Las Vegas by a madman as ‘deserving’ of it because it was a country music venue and ‘they were probably all Trump fans.’
Here’s a perfect example, from the survey:
Partisans are breaking apart on other measures, too, with Democrats often providing most of the movement. Perhaps most striking is a finding on racial discrimination. Forty-one percent of Americans say racial discrimination is the main reason blacks cannot get ahead in the country — the highest recorded figure in the study’s history but still fewer than the 49 percent who say blacks who can’t get ahead are mostly responsible for their own situations.
The partisan gap has exploded on this question. In 1994, the partisan difference between Democrats and Republicans was 13 points: 39 percent of Democrats and 26 percent of Republicans said racial discrimination is the main reason why many black people couldn’t get ahead. Even in 2011, the gap between Democrats and Republicans was 19 points.
But in the new poll, the gap is a yawning 50 percentage points: A 64 percent majority of Democrats say racial discrimination is the main reason blacks can’t get ahead, but only 14 percent of Republicans agree.
“Democrats have long been more likely to say that racial discrimination is the reason that blacks can’t get ahead,” said Kiley. “But the share of Democrats who say that has really increased over the last several years.”
In other words, most Democrats really do believe that the majority of Americans (and the majority of their political opponents) are racist bigots who work daily to ensure that black people are kept from being successful, despite the numerous examples of very successful black people.
A country cannot remain this divided and remain intact. Historically, that’s always been the case, and nothing about the human condition in the 21st century changes that.