From Confusion to Clarity

So, I’m liberal. Coming from the Bay Area to Bucknell has taught me that. In fact, at home before college, I hadn’t really realized that I was as liberal-minded a gal as I am – possibly because the idea of tree-hugging hippies in Bezerkly scared me. Plus, both of my parents consider themselves Republicans – or they did. My dad used to call himself a “Blue Dog Republican” (a play on Blue Dog Democrats, which I can’t say I really understand beyond what’s on Wikipedia), but got to a point where he felt so unaligned with the Republican Party that he reregistered as an Independent. I, too, was and still am frustrated with the polarization of the two big political parties. When I turned 18, I registered as an Independent. But then I came to college, where I’ve been confronted with much more political diversity. Somewhere along the way, I narrowed down my views on the political sphere.

After taking the Pew political quiz, I was deemed a “solid liberal.” Well, no surprise there. What I didn’t like about the quiz, though, was that between the two responses you could choose from for each question, it was totally obvious which response would swing me liberal or conservative, and I felt obligated to choose the one I knew applied to a liberal mindset. Why? I’m not really sure, but I’m beginning to think the polarization of the two parties has rubbed off on me a bit, which doesn’t make me feel so good.

The best part about the Pew quiz, I thought, was the extra information located in the tabs once you received your results. Some of it’s not super surprising – things like the different demographics by political view. But other graphs highlighted the strong differences between the staunch conservatives and solid liberals. Some examples:




Happy debate night!


One thought on “From Confusion to Clarity

  1. I never noticed it before until I read your post. You are absolutely right when you mentioned that it was totally obvious which response would swing a person to either the conservative or republican side. The fact that this was in your head when you were choosing your answer, and actually impacted you, is very interesting. The fact that it is not a blind quiz/experiment inevitably might cause a person to think less about their opinions on the issues in front of them and more about how they themselves are labeled in terms of what party they are apart of.

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