Voting theories 2 replies

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#1 10 years ago

Hello there Before we start, I do not consider myself racist or strongly prejudice in anyway, and I certainly have no complaint against someone based on race, gender, sexual preference, nationality etc. I personally believe we are all prejudice in a small way, but i digress. Just a small disclaimer before anyone shouts at me for being prejudice. I was reading the "who would you vote for" thread not too long ago and it started a small discussion between my wife and I. I am an unashamed monarchist, regarding my own countries politics anyway, and my wife is a Republican, she just doesn't like any of the current candidates. Basically, we both got to thinking and discussion the actual reasons behind voting. Sure, we'd all like to believe someone is getting voted for based on their political agenda and promises rather than some other reason but the fact remains that in certain cases this isn't so. For example, in the current race (stop me if I am wrong, as I am aware some of them have dropped out now, but putting names to people has never been my strong point) a woman, an afro-american and a mormon. Disregarding political beliefs, what does this mean? Well it means we live in a country where gender, race and religion do not inhibit anyones right to be president, which is a good thing, but if you look at it, won't certain people vote for them based on who they are, not what they represent? Okay, I have personally spoken to my wife, my mother-in-law and my wifes work collegues and none of them seem to be bias pro or con Hillary based on her being a woman, however, will Obama be voted for by afro-americans simply because of his race? Will it be a bizaare twist of racism that he is voted for based on the thought process of "I'm black, hes black, so he will represent my needs better than a white person"? The same thought occurs about the mormon (appologies for the lack of name but as I said, I can't recall it). Will mormons in the USA be bias towards him because they believe someone who has the same religious beliefs as them will be more likely to represent their needs than say a Jewish person or a Catholic? I personally think this sort of thing happens a lot. I know it does in Britain. For example, in my hometown of Stoke-on-Trent, the Labour Council was voted in over and over even though they were clearly corrupt and did nothing to help the local populace simply because the majority of voters were coal miners and refused to vote against their sacred Labour candidate because he was a working man, or because simply he was "Labour". It got to the point where the Tory or Independant or Democrat candidate could have been God himself and the Labour candidate could have promised to burn babies and create institutionalised gulags and they STILL would have voted Labour. Okay exagguration but you get the point. Putting your Personal voting habits aside, do you think the majority of people do vote for candidates based on background, lifestyle choices, religion, creed, gender or whatever rather than for their political stance? Also, do you think that these biases can be very misinformed? Personally? Well, to use a specific example. I personally do not believe that a Catholic would be more likely to represent my needs (being a Catholic myself) than a non-Catholic. If the candidate is from a rich, priviledged background, Catholic or not, how are they supposed to know what a poor working class man like myself needs, how I feel, what i've been through? You can more or less swap "Catholic" in this sense for any color of skin, religious view, sexual preference etc. I don't see how it has any bearing, especially when compared to background. Even with background, just because someone grew up in the same street as me and had a very similar life to me doesn't mean they think the same way about governing a country. I think people should pay more attention to what each candidate has to say, what they intend to do, and look at their actions in former positions of governance, over what color they are, what religion they follow and so forth. However, as I said, I can understand the biases people have. If i were living in Mexico and out of 10 candidates, one was white and the rest Latino, I would probably instinctively lean towards the white guy first unless I had a very good reason not to. Why? Because as humans, we are naturally tribal people, and someone who is similar to us we feel (rightly or wrongly) would empathise with us more than someone dissimilar. Racist? Descriminatory? Possibly, but its how humans act instinctively, and its up to the logical, sensible parts of our brain to see through such primal reactions. Using that analogy, I can understand why afro-americans might lean more towards Obama than another candidate, but as I said, to make an informed choice we shouldn't let such things fool us into making bias choices. Thoughts? Opinions?

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6th October 2007

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#2 10 years ago

Wall of text is never fun.

Care to summarize?


I didn't make it!

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#3 10 years ago

If your not interested enough to read it then reading a summary would only give you a rough idea, which would lead to misunderstanding of the original point. The whole point was that I wanted people to read it, think about it themselves and then post about how they felt, whether they agreed, whether they thought it does happen, whether they thought it was right. Their views based upon careful thought and deliberation.