Saturday, June 19, 2010

Four Moral Issues Sharply Divide Americans

It is always exciting to see what people think about things that surround them in life. We talk a lot about values and good and bad (sometimes the ugly), but when it comes to brass tacks, it is so fascinating to observe the worms coming out of the can and people revealing their true selves.

Surveys are great. They provide anonymity and when looking at results, you don´t feel that bad any more. Well, you may never confess that, for example, you are pro corporal punishment because the society in general condemns such thoughts and moreso behaviors. But secretly you would love to see those who deserve it suffer for their bad deeds. What you need to do is to take part in a survey and then look at the numbers - hey! you are not alone in your thinking any more. It is a rare case that a certain question will yield a ranking of zero if the reference group is diverse and vast enough.

Gallup has just released its research outcomes on moral issues and what the American society looks like when asked those questions:

Perceived Moral Acceptability of Behaviors and Social Policies

Some interesting observations:
  • suicide in itself is OK, but when it is assisted, it´s terribly wrong
  • cloning animals and humans apparently might bring about different implications
  • cloning animals is half as bad as testing medicines on them
  • death penalty is just as acceptable as a divorce. It is a bit less acceptable to have sex outside of marriage
Why are we being so hypocritical on moral issues?

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