Friday, February 12, 2016

Because you can't make up this stuff!

Donald Trump and the rest of the 2016 cast of clown candidates are all promoting some degree of Islamophobia, to gin up fear among their base in the hopes that will translate into votes.  I have routinely - and accurately - described conservative voters as poorly educated, and as being low information voters, and as being bigots.

Nothing makes that point more clearly than this sad commentary on the lack of geography and history knowledge among United States citizens:
...41% of his [Donald Trump] supporters would favor bombing Agrabah to only 9% who are opposed to doing that. Agrabah is the country from Aladdin. Overall 30% of Republican primary voters say they support bombing it to 13% who are opposed.
Sadly, the Dems are better, but not by nearly enough of a margin to avoid shame.
We asked the same question of Democrats, and 36% of them opposed bombing Agrabah to 19% in support.
I can only hope that in the context of polling questions, which often come at inconvenient times while respondents are multi-tasking, that there was some unfortunate confusion with a familiar sounding place name not registering correctly as fiction rather than fact.

To elaborate further on the poll which produced that sad bit of Islamophobia, from Public Policy Polling year-end:

-54% support Trump's proposed Muslim ban, to only 25% who oppose it. Among Trump's own supporters there's 82/5 support for it. Cruz voters favor it as well, 57/25. Rubio voters are pretty evenly divided on it with 39% in favor and 40% opposed, while Bush voters oppose it 21/37.
-46% support a national database of Muslims, to only 37% opposed. Trump voters support this 66/15 but voters for the other top candidates are more closely divided- Cruz's (40/41) and Rubio's (44/45) narrowly oppose it while Bush's (36/49) do by a wider spread.
-36% think thousands of Arabs in New Jersey cheered when the World Trade Center collapsed to 35% who don't think that happened. Supporters of Trump (49/24) and Cruz (47/22) both pretty firmly think that occurred while Bush (37/51) and Rubio (22/46) voters don't think it did.
-Only 28% of GOP primary voters go so far as to think mosques in the United States should be shut down to 47% opposed to that. Trump voters are on an island on that issue- they support it 45/28 but backers of Cruz (23/40) and especially Rubio (18/66) and Bush (14/68) are strongly against it.
-Supporters of most of the major GOP candidates agree with the basic premise that Islam should be legal in the United States- it's 59/21 with Cruz voters, 67/11 with Bush voters, and 77/10 with Rubio voters. Trump supporters are off on their own on that one too though- just 33% think Islam should be legal to 42% who think it should be illegal. Overall 53% of primary voters think Islam should be allowed to just 26% who don't think it should be.
To put some of these findings about real modern day issues and Trump voters in context, 41% of his voters think Japanese internment was a good thing, to 37% who don't.
While I expect Trump's popularity to continue to decline overall, I sadly do not expect the insidious and deep rooted Islamophobia on the right to do so.

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