I found this chart in a story about the electability of Mormons. But that’s not what intrigued me. Sure, I’d like to know more about the secret underwear, the fundamentalist-branch polygamy, and life without caffeine or alcohol, but what really got me was the wonderful breakdown of our prejudices.
If people were answering honestly - and I know that’s a big IF – this is what it means:
…women’s lib isn’t quite there. We’re still be more comfortable with a black person in office than someone who we’d have to address as “Ms. President.”
…it’s nice to see that only 3 percentage points separate our mistrust of Catholics from our mistrust of Jews.
…we’re more comfortable electing a black president than a Hispanic president. Guess our racial biases aren’t based on melatonin levels alone.
…Mormons at 80% approval surprised me. I thought it would be lower, just because of their insularity and our own clichéd snarky stereotypes about them (see opening sentences above).
…thought we’d made more progress on the gay/lesbian thing. Sexual orientation is wired, people, not a choice. Get over it (although it would be hysterical if we elected some uber-manly guy into office, complete with a Stepford wife beard and everything, and then caught him at a glory hole in some night club, just after the economy boomed and he killed some big fish terrorist). Let the hand wringing ensue!
…Muslims are way below blacks, women, Catholics, Hispanics, Mormons and gays/lesbians. No surprise there, unfortunately.
…but the atheist thing: the atheist thing floored me.
In a country where the separation of church and state – one of the hallmarks of an enlightened society – is enshrined in the constitution, only slightly more than half of us would feel comfortable electing someone who doesn’t believe in God. That’s important, because no god fearing leader has ever done anything evil, like, say, started a bloody crusade, sent airplanes into skyscrapers, or molested young children.
PS – California has the second most Mormons in the country – who knew?