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View Diary: New AP Poll: Iraq War Support 37%, Support for Dissent 87% (260 comments)

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  •  I know this is supposed... (4.00)
    ...to be good news, but what jumps out at me most is that 12% of AMERICANS believe dissenters should put up and shut up.

    That's more than one in ten people who lack the most fundamental understanding of civil rights.  More than one in ten people willing to sacrifice the First Amendment so Dear Leader can play boom-boom wherever he pleases.  What's more, you've got to assume the vast majority of these respondents are Republicans, which means that roughly one in five Republicans feels this way.

    These fuckwits should surrender their voter cards.

    "The American people will trust the Democratic Party to defend America when they believe that Democrats will defend other Democrats." Wesley Clark

    by The Termite on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 08:45:43 AM PDT

    •  Every society has its fringe nuts (none)
      I'm glad its only 12%.  I hope AP asks this question again over a series of months to see if this number is stable, because my faulty intuition was telling me that more than 12% were of the Rush Limbaugh brigades.  Good to know that Limbaugh is the marginal one.

      Sell your cleverness; buy bewilderment.

      by lapin on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 08:49:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  > 10% is not "fringe" (4.00)
        That's a voting bloc.  As a population it translates to a bigger group than soccer moms.

        And 20% (within the Republican party) is certainly not fringe."  It may not be their base, but 1 in 5 of those bastards wants to muzzle YOU.

        "The American people will trust the Democratic Party to defend America when they believe that Democrats will defend other Democrats." Wesley Clark

        by The Termite on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 09:11:29 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Twelve Tribes (4.00)
          According to John Green's research on politics and religions identity, the Religious Right comprises approximately 12.6% of the electorate.

          Looks like we've found them.

          The right to be heard does not automatically include the right to be taken seriously. -- Hubert H. Humphrey

          by KTinOhio on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 09:35:23 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  You're right to be alarmed. However.... (4.00)
          This number, if memory serves, is consistent with a lot of polls where they ask people about dissent in general, absent any particular issue. A pathetically large (but thank God substantially minority) segment of our popular does not, in fact, support/understand the Bill of Rights.

          Of course, the question doesn't ask whether dissenters should be jailed, just whether it's acceptable. That's a bit different. For example, I don't think it's acceptable to be a racist, but that doesn't mean I believe they should be legally sanctioned in some way. (I'm one of those "Nazis can march in Skokie" First Amendment "absolutist" types.)

          "The days of me not taking you seriously are certainly coming to a middle."

          by LABobsterofAnaheim on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 11:18:32 AM PDT

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        •  The liberal equivalent (none)
          Considering all the people who have claimed that Pat Robertson should be arrested, or the FCC should fine him, or whatever, this can't be described as purely a "right wing" problem.

          Too many people on both sides of the isle are willing to betray the funamental principles of this country when it serves their agenda.

          Pat Robertson is disgusting.  He's an evil person.  But claiming that he should be locked up, or that he should be subect to fines for stating his opinion makes me sick.  Boycott the channels that broadcast his filth, use your right to speak out against his hatred, but don't sick the government on him.

          On the other hand, I would expect (as has been mentioned by others) that the 10% who disapprove of the anti-war protesters don't all believe they should be fined or locked up.

          I'm not trying to defend people who believe we shouldn't protest, merely trying to point out that it's a problem associated with extremists, not just right wing extremists.

          •  there is a difference between PROTESTING (none)
            and essentially making death threats or at the very least advocating murder of anyone, but in this case the legitimately elected leader of a sovereign democratic nation (i.e. NOT a "strong-arm dictator")

            I'm not an attorney, so I won't go out on a limb here, but, as soon as Robertson made the statement, what came to my mind was, hmmm. Doesn't this constitute a "making terroristic threats" (and that's a crime that's been on the books for a hell of a lot longer than the Patriot Act).

            It's not clear to me whether his statements actually fit that category, but sounds to me like they do.

            •  I agree they are different (none)
              But, if you listen to what Robertson said, he didn't make a direct threat against Hugo Chavez.  He advocated for a specific policy change by our government.  It was a disgusting and probably illegal policy he was advocating, but it was still essentially a policy change.  He didn't say that he was going to kill Chavez.  He didn't encourage his listeners to kill Chavez.  He said our government should assassinate Chavez.

              There is no way that Pat Robertson's comments come anywhere near the legal standards for not being protected by the First Ammendment.  (I am not a lawyer, but ever since the "Communications Decency Act" one of my hobbies is following Supreme Court cases on First Ammendment law.)

              And personally, I hope that no-one ever changes our laws to make what he said illegal.  Our First Ammendment Rights have already been trampled during the past five years.  (Six years ago, who would have thought we would have "First Ammendment Zones?"  The whole country should be a First Ammendment Zone!)

              •  Agreed. I hope no one ever changes our (none)
                First Amendment rights either; however,  I wouldn't mind seeing a change in ethics, educational level, and taste so that a psychopath like Robertson (or Bush or John Bolton)  wouldn't have so much as a shot at getting a spot on a late-night QVC ad for a self-cleaning cat litter box.

                The fact that these people have ANY kind of audience is obscene, and a sad index for the fact that, alas, even regime change at home is not going to be enough to again make this country habitable.

    •  Right on.... (4.00)
      I find it alarming that this question,

      6. Do you think it is OK for people who oppose the war in Iraq to express their opposition publicly, or not?

      is even a QUESTION. When did that become a QUESTION?

      scarey shit, people.

      •  Apart from little matters like freedom of speech.. (4.00)
        ..it's also scary to think that as president, all you have to do is wage perpetual warfare, and a fairly large contingent of the public thinks you should therefore be immune from dissent.
        •  it also plays into shrub's (none)
          "charm" factor.... middle America loves to live with the illusion that "anyone" can be pres, even someone who could not pass a 3rd grade grammar-, civics-, or geography exam, like most of middle america; course, once you get to be pres, you're above the law and beyond reproach.
        •  Oceania (none)
          has ALWAYS been at war with Eastasia...

          9/11 was the Neocons' Reichstag fire. "Patriot Act" = Enabling Act.

          by Bulldawg on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 09:49:46 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Except when its been at war with Eurasia. (none)
            One way or another, it's always been at war . . .or always WILL be at war.

            I re-read it recently and it gives me chills.

            "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed it's the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead

            by RevDeb on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 10:12:33 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Eurasia? (none)
              I seem to remember being told that Eurasia has always been our ally.  And when I look it up in the old newspapers, sure enough Eurasia has always been our ally.  (Although I have this nagging memory of hating the Eurasians, but I must be mistaken...)

              There's no way we could have ever been at war with the Eurasians, and allied with someone as totally evil as Saddam... I mean Osama... I mean Eastasia.

        •  that number is dropping like a lead balloon. (none)
    •  Nah. (none)
      Nobody in that 12% really believes what you wrote. They believe in free speech, but have been warped by propaganda to the point that they are equating dissent with the war to shouting "fire" in a crowded theater. Our dissent is "hurting the troops", and damaging the war effort, so we need to be quiet or more people will die. It's crap, but that's the thought process. I've seen it in action.
      •  I don't see a very sharp... (none)
        ...distinction between the belief I described and the thought process you described.  It still amounts to a willingness to set aside the letter and spirit of the First Amendment.  It is still moronic and it is still as anti-American as it gets.

        "The American people will trust the Democratic Party to defend America when they believe that Democrats will defend other Democrats." Wesley Clark

        by The Termite on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 08:58:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Hmm. (none)
          I agree with what you're saying. That 12% doesn't fully comprehend the meaning and spirit of the Bill of Rights.

          But there is a big, BIG difference between describing the thought process of the other side as (a) "Throw the dissenters in prison so that Great Leader can kill things," versus (b) "Now is not the time for protests, we need to support the troops, so they can finish the job."

          I'd bet any amount of money that the average viewpoint of that 12% is closer to (b) than (a). That said, both (a) and (b) are still wrong, and anti-American, IMHO. In that I think we agree.

      •  I HATE (4.00)
        that stupid "fire in a crowded theater" analogy.  It only makes sense if there's no fire.  What if someone correctly shouts "Fire!"  That dumbass analogy was one of the worst things that has ever happened to First Amendment jurisprudence.

        Loyalty to the country always. Loyalty to the government when it deserves it. -- Mark Twain

        by GTPinNJ on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 08:58:58 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  See what I said upthread (none)
      I fear that the 12% is actually on the "low" side, the same way the gay marriage/civil union polls didn't reflect how people voted in the 11 states it was on the ballot in the '04 election.  I wouldn't be surprised to at least see it closer to 25-30%.

      As for the "20% of Republicans" point, it mathematically makes sense but the Repub response would be "OMG, we iz teh ones that believes in pr0tecting teh Constitution and fr33dom uv speech!!11!!11!!"

      "But the people of America have spoken, and they're saying they want four more years of Douchebag!!" -Family Guy Movie

      by BlueEngineerInOhio on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 09:21:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  High Schoolers and the First Amendment (none)
      A survey of 100,000 high schoolers found that more than 1/3 think the First Amendment goes too far in the rights it guarantees.

      Interestingly, among those students who have taken courses dealing with the media or the First Amendment, 87% believe people should be allowed to express unpopular opinions. So, even after having a class that deals specifically with the First Amendment, 13% of high schoolers still think it's not ok to publicly express opposition, which lines up pretty closely with the 12% in the AP poll.  So 1 in 8 Americans simply don't believe in the right to dissent? Would that be true if they were given a different situation, i.e. instead of Iraq the question was about protesting the teaching of evolution in schools or allowing gay marriages.  Would it still be 1 in 8 opposed to public opposition or, would they suddenly discover IOKIYAR

      •  We seriously need (4.00)
        a return to some good old-fashioned high-school civics classes in this country.

        Of science and the human heart, there is no limit. -- Bono

        by saucy monkey on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 09:58:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Why is this a surprise? (none)
        They're HIGH-SCHOOOLERS. The most conservative, let's-not-make-waves people on earth (well, except for middle-schoolers). Anybody different, they try to crush like a bug. I would say they're relating this more to their own experiences than to the country/world at large.

        (I remember high school all too well...)

        "I must admit that I don't see a bright tomorrow; still, I must also confess that my hopes are fairly high"--Ass Ponys, "Fighter Pilot"

        by oxymoron on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 10:05:03 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  NOT! (none)
          At least not in the early 70's when I was in school.  We were a pretty aware bunch and loved to make waves. We were also involved in local politics - school board, state representatives etc.  

          Guess a lot of us grew up and somehow hatched conservative, conformist children.

          The truth always matters.

          by texasmom on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 10:46:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  there is a pendulum swing in history. (none)
          we are just now starting the swing back to the other side. our side! it is slow but sure!
      •  Not a surprise (none)
        if we are talking about Lakoff's "strict father" mentality. Those who are hardwired for this  know that there cannot be any room for any kind of dissent. Scary, indeed, but it is there.

        "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed it's the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead

        by RevDeb on Fri Aug 26, 2005 at 10:16:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The Far Right Radical Fringe (none)
      (i.e., Hardline Facsist / Corporatist / Pro - Police State types) would, I suspect (admittedly with no real evidence whatsoever), have to be at least 10 or 12%.

      Is there any good empirical data out there on this issue?

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