Showing posts with label Young. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Young. Show all posts

October 27, 2016

Hillary Expands Following on Younger Voters




 Hillary on College graduation picture day

  
Hillary Clinton has expanded her lead over Republican rival Donald Trump to 28 percentage points among voters younger than 30, according to a new survey by the Harvard Institute of Politics that signals trouble ahead for Republicans with this crucial voting bloc.
The national survey, released Wednesday, found that Mrs. Clinton is backed by 49% of likely voters aged 18 to 29, compared with 21% for Mr. Trump, 14% for Libertarian Gary Johnson and 5% for Green Party candidate Jill Stein.
The poll suggests Mr. Trump could set back GOP efforts to improve its standing with millennials, a voting bloc that is about to surpass baby boomers as the largest generation of eligible voters. In Harvard’s October 2012 survey, GOP nominee Mitt Romney trailed President Barack Obama, who was a magnet for young voters, by just 19 points among those under 30, 55% to 36%.

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Hillary Clinton is eyeing traditionally Republican states as potential battlegrounds this campaign season. WSJ's Gerald F. Seib sizes up Democrats' chances in Arizona, Georgia, Texas and Missouri. Photo: AP
John Della Volpe, polling director of the Harvard Institute of Politics, said Mrs. Clinton’s growing lead—up from 22 points in a July Harvard poll—was noteworthy because Mrs. Clinton has struggled to bring along millennials. During the Democratic primary campaign, Sen. Bernie Sanders was the prohibitive favorite among the group.
“She has had a very complicated relationship with this generation for eight years,” said Mr. Della Volpe, who believes Mrs. Clinton is reaping benefits from a concerted campaign effort to court them since the summer’s Democratic convention. “She understood the importance of this vote. If not for millennials, this would be a much closer race.”
Both candidates are viewed more negatively than positively, but Mrs. Clinton’s image has improved since July, while Mr. Trump’s stayed about the same. Among likely young voters, Mrs. Clinton is viewed favorably by 48% and unfavorably by 51%. For Mr. Trump, 22% are favorable and 76% unfavorable.
The poll found Mrs. Clinton’s dominance among young voters extended to all subgroups—besides Republicans—even among young white voters who in 2012 had favored Mr. Romney by 4 points. She also led Mr. Trump among young women and voters without a college degree by wider margins than Mr. Obama led Mr. Romney in 2012. However, her lead with young Hispanics is narrower than Mr. Obama’s, and among blacks, her lead is the same as his.
ENLARGE
While Mrs. Clinton has benefited from the strong negative feelings most young voters had about Mr. Trump, her greater risk may come from millennials who are tempted to vote for a third-party candidate or not vote at all.
“The choice was between Clinton, Johnson and the couch,” Mr. Della Volpe said. Mr. Della Volpe found in a separate analysis of Google tracking polls in September that, when Mr. Johnson stumbled on an interview question about the war-torn Syrian city of Aleppo, it took a bigger toll on support among young people than other age groups.
While young voters have shown more support for third-party candidates than other generations, the Harvard poll found their interest in such candidates may not be durable: More than one-third of Mr. Johnson’s supporters said they would likely vote for another candidate on Election Day. Only 6% of Clinton supporters and 5% of Trump supporters said the same.
Republicans and Democrats seem about equally committed to voting this year, but GOP voters’ commitment has dropped significantly from 2012. Asked if they would definitely vote on Election Day or before, 59% of Democrats and 56% of Republicans said yes. In 2012, 60% of Democrats and 65% of Republicans said they definitely would vote.
Young Hispanics and independent voters are more likely to vote this year than 2012: 39% of Hispanics say they would definitely vote, up from 31% in 2012. For independents, the share of definite voters rose to 36% from 29% in 2012.
The poll found the mood of this generation grim and anxious. Asked how they felt about the future of the country, 51% said they were fearful, while just 20% said they were hopeful. More than three-quarters said they were concerned about the state of race relations in the U.S.
The KnowledgePanel survey of 2,150 18- to 29-year-olds was conducted with the Government and Academic Research team of Gfk for the Institute of Politics Oct. 7-17. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.11 percentage points.
By Janet Hook,  can be reached at janet.hook@wsj.com
Original posting from
Wall Street Journal

January 4, 2015

A New Young Culture Made Minds Change on Gay rights


                                                                         

 When she learned a relative was gay, Amy Mesirow embraced the idea, used it as a teaching moment for her children and explained how it also would be OK if one of them were gay.
Then her son, who was 15 at the time, came out. “I felt like he was entering a whole new world, where I couldn’t follow him,” Mesirow recalled of her struggle to adapt.
Eventually, she found reinforcement in an unexpected place: television. “A year later, ‘Modern Family’ premiered,” she said of the hit show featuring a gay couple, “and changed my vision.”
Today, gays and lesbians are the folks next door, brought to the nation’s living rooms through the force of popular culture. Whether fictional characters or the performers themselves, they’re on TV, in movies, in music, even in comic books. Many play roles that are not the often derisive stereotypes of a just a generation ago.
Popular culture is a key to the broad and rapid shift in the nation’s politics as the country has turned rapidly from long opposition to gay rights toward support for gays, including same-sex marriage, acceptance of a gay child and willingness to vote for a gay politician.
Millions watch Cam and Mitch, a married male couple raising a daughter on “Modern Family,” ABC’s five-time Emmy award-winning sitcom. “Same Love,” a marriage-equality anthem by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, jumped to the Top 5 on Billboard’s rap-music chart last year.
In comic books, Archie, the red-haired freckle-faced perennial teenager, was killed last year while protecting a gay friend. DC Comics introduced a gay Green Lantern two years ago. Marvel Comics presided over comicdom’s first same-sex superhero wedding when Northstar married his male partner in “Astonishing X-Men.”
There are 33 recurring lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender characters on prime-time shows and 64 on scripted prime-time cable-television programs in the 2014-15 season, up from 42 in 2013-14, according to GLAAD, a gay-rights group.
It’s a long way from 1999, when the Rev. Jerry Falwell derided the children’s TV show “Teletubbies” because “Tinky Winky,” a purple character who carried a red handbag and had a triangular-shape antennae on his head, appeared to be gay.
“We’re far from a happy world ... but we’ve made dramatic progress,” said actor George Takei, who played Hikaru Sulu in the “Star Trek” television series and movies. He came out in 2005 and married longtime partner Brad Altman in 2008.
The portrayals of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in popular culture and the portrayals of people who love them, Takei said in an interview, have “contributed to changing American society.”
TV plays big role
While attitudes may be changing rapidly, acceptance is far from universal. “They are using their influence in socially irresponsible ways,” Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association said of the entertainment industry.
The group’s One Million Moms boycotted J.C. Penney in 2012 for hiring as its spokeswoman Ellen DeGeneres, who came out on her comedy show in the 1990s. Fischer said the group continues to target advertisers of shows it opposes. “Our concern is they are normalizing and sanitizing what is an unnatural and risky lifestyle,” he said.
Sanitized or not, the cultural impact on public opinion is undeniable, and that in turn is changing politics. Vice President Joe Biden, who endorsed same-sex marriage before the 2012 presidential election, cited the power of popular culture in helping facilitate the change.
“When things really began to change is when the social culture changes. I think ‘Will & Grace’ probably did more to educate the American public than almost anything anybody’s ever done so far,” Biden said on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” referring to the NBC sitcom that centered on the friendship between roommates Will Truman, a gay lawyer, and Grace Adler, a straight interior designer.
While it seems sudden, the changes have been a long time in coming, a legacy of the civil-rights movement.
“We’re just now seeing the acceleration of a process that has been going on for more than 40 years,” said Nadine Hubbs, a professor of women’s studies, music and American culture at the University of Michigan.
The middle class has been gradually embracing homosexuality, Hubbs said, and “when celebrity artists come out, it contributes to the softening of the boundaries and eventually it can turn into a critical mass.”
Surveys suggest that the depictions carry influence:
• Twenty-seven percent of respondents said shows with LGBT characters such as “Modern Family” and Fox’s musical show “Glee” helped influence them to support same-sex marriage, according to a 2012 poll by The Hollywood Reporter.
• Thirty-four percent of respondents said seeing gays and lesbians on television and 29 percent said seeing them in movies helped change their views, according to a 2008 poll conducted for GLAAD by Harris Interactive.
For some Americans, viewing LGBT characters through popular culture and media provides a no-pressure, no-judgment insight into communities they might not otherwise see or fully understand. “Seeing it in the comfort of your own home, where you can work it through without anybody judging or watching you, is really useful,” said Mesirow, of Marstons Mills, Mass.
When Mesirow’s son Ben, now 22, came out, she quickly learned it’s one thing to intellectually accept homosexuality and another to come to grips with it emotionally when it involves a member of your immediate family. “You have visions for your child’s future, living a similar life to your own with a wife and biological children and the whole picket-fence scenario,” Mesirow said. “We felt he wasn’t going to be able to live a mainstream life and be accepted by people around him and be able to raise a family.”
Tuning into shows such as “Modern Family,” along with “The Fosters” on ABC Family and the Amazon-streamed show “Transparent,” helped ease her concerns.
“Here’s this gay couple with this big extended family that, for the most part, is very supportive; with co-workers and jobs with no issues to speak of,” Mesirow said of “Modern Family”
“Their lives are like any other couple’s ... Just seeing it on the TV and feeling I got to know this couple and this family ... just gave me a sense of relief and a vision that Ben could have this type of life.” Her search for understanding led her to join the support group PFLAG, Parents, Family and Friends of Lesbians and Gays.
Assimilation challenges
Activists knew that increased positive visibility in popular culture would help change attitudes. “The best way to change hearts and minds is through media,” said Sarah Kate Ellis, president and chief executive of GLAAD. “For many, many years, networks were reluctant to depict LGBT people the same way they depict heterosexual characters. Ultimately, we want network TV to depict LGBT characters the same way they would straight characters: in a multidimensional way.”
ABC’s musical drama “Nashville” highlights country music’s resistance to gays with a storyline involving a closeted country singer who marries a woman to keep his secret. The actor who plays Will Lexington told Out magazine last year that he doesn’t believe country-music executives would give Lexington “the time of day.”
While the number of LGBT characters and plots are increasing on television, LGBT actors say they still experience discrimination behind the camera. Fifty-three percent of LGBT respondents to a 2013 survey by the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists said they believe that directors and producers were biased against hiring LGBT performers.
A GLAAD report last summer found that only 17 of 102 movies from major movie studios in 2013 featured LGBT characters, and that most of those portrayals were negative. Some writers for DC Comics’ “Batwoman” quit in 2013 after the company reportedly rejected a storyline that had the superhero marrying her girlfriend.
Some LGBT-rights activists also complain that the change in popular culture has homogenized portrayals of gays and lesbians for the benefit of heterosexual audiences and paints an incomplete picture of their lives. 
Suzanna Danuta Walters, director of women’s, gender and sexuality studies at Northeastern University, said “Modern Family’s” gay characters “offer a narrow slice of gay life: two wealthy white men, who never touch each other.”
“There are people on the gay left who deeply regret the trend toward assimilation and desexualization,” said Paul Robinson, an emeritus Stanford University history professor and author of “Queer Wars: The New Gay Rights and its Critics.” 
“There’s an argument within the gay community between those who support assimilation — getting married and joining the military — and those who think gays should be part of an alliance with women, poor people, people of color. The people who want to get married, have children, have won the argument.”
McClatchy Washington Bureau (TNS)

November 21, 2014

Dad Finds out 13 Yr old Son is Gay on a Google Search


                                                                      
A person's Google search history can often provide a direct window to their soul.
So when a 38-year-old single dad accidentally saw that his 13-year-old son had been looking up things along the lines of "I'm gay, what now," he was conflicted. Should he pretend he didn't see It and wait for his son to come out on his own terms? Or, should he tell him he loves him and supports him no matter what? Dad wasn't sure, so he consulted Reddit for advice.
"What are my options?" he asked. "Should I wait for him to tell me? or should I make a few hints at it?” 
"I'm worried that if I don't hint at it, that he will be worried about something that he really doesn't have to be worried about," the dad explained.
"He has seemed slightly down recently, as in, he isn't as cheerful as he once was, and I desperately want to tell him that I love him regardless of which sexuality he is," he continued. "I love him regardless of which gender he loves, in fact when I was slightly older than him I had a few flings with guys, which he doesn't know about, so I am 100% supportive."
The fellas at r/askgaybros were happy to share their input. "Google 'how to tell my son I will love and support him no matter what' and leave it in his search history," suggested one user. Another suggested the dad let his son “come to you with this," suggesting int he meantime, he start being discretely supportive of LGBT matters, by "[making] a positive remark when gay marriage is discussed on tv, compliment(iing) a show for their inclusiveness of LGBT characters, etc." 
Don't "force him to 'come out' before he's ready," suggested another user. "There's no telling what he himself thinks about the whole 'liking guys' thing yet, so it would probably be best to give him some space for the time being. What you can do, is lead him in the right direction. Without being too obvious, introduce some more LGBT culture into his life...Let him know what side you are on, and that you are there for him if he needs the support."
So what did dad do? In an update posted to Reddit a few days later, he explained that he "started off with talking about general media with [his son]," like "how awesome it was that Tim Cook (CEO of Apple) came out as being gay..."
The following day, he asked his son if he had any crushes, and when he said maybe, the dad asked who was “the lucky person." 
"At this point he sort of looked at me slightly confused, I'm not 100% sure why, but I'm assuming it is because I said 'lucky person; rather than ;lucky girl,;" continued dad.
At that point, he "dropped the conversation," but in doing so, he told his son, "Well, whoever it is, they should be so lucky to have you as a boyfriend.."
That night, after a few seconds of silence, the son told his father, "I'm gay." Dad got up, "and gave him a huge hug," he wrote. "[The son] even started to cry on my shoulder and because of that I couldn't help myself but shed a couple tears. We talked for a bit while finishing our dinner about how I can't emphasize enough that I love him regardless of which gender he loves etc..."
Countless Redditors were bestowing gold (fictitious currency) onto the dad. He was appreciative, at first, but then suggested a better use of well-wishers' funds: Giving to a charitable organization. “ I’ve heard wonderful things of The Trevor Project," he wrote, "who provide a 24/7 suicide and crisis prevention hotline for LGBTQ youth."
pic:The Inquisitr-

March 12, 2014

New Pew Poll: 61% of Young Republicans Support Gay Marriage



                                                                               
Young Republicans support gay marriage 2014Young people continue to be the strongest proponents of same-sex marriage. And as public support for same-sex marriage continues to grow, the gap between young and old is nowhere more striking than within the Republican coalition.
Today, 61% of Republicans and Republican leaners under 30 favor same-sex marriage while just 35% oppose it. By contrast, just 27% of Republicans ages 50 and older favor allowing gays and lesbians to marry.
This generation gap among Republicans comes against a backdrop of rapidly changing public opinion overall on the issue. More than half the public (54%) now favors allowing gays and lesbians to legally marry, a record high in Pew Research surveys, in keeping with findings from other recent polls. Democrats and Republicans remain on opposite sides of the issue, with 69% of Democrats and Democratic leaning independents favoring same-sex marriage compared with 39% Republicans and Republican leaners. 
Young Republicans' views on gay familiesOn this issue, young Republicans’ views are more in line with Democrats. And while support for gay marriage is higher among younger Democrats and Democratic leaners than older Democrats, even Democrats 65 and older favor same-sex marriage by a margin of about two-to-one.
The relative liberalism of young Republicans on issues of homosexuality goes beyond their support for gay marriage. Just 18% of Republicans under 30 say “more gay and lesbian couples raising children” is a bad thing for American society, while 26% say it is a good thing (56% either say it doesn’t make a difference or they don’t know). By comparison, majorities or pluralities of older Republicans say this trend is a bad thing for society.

September 28, 2013

Young Voters For Gay Rights Are The Republican’s Red Sea and They Have No Moses



A couple embraces moments after their marriage ceremony in the east chapel at the Manhattan Marriage Bureau two days after the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on DOMA on June 28, 2013 in New York City.
Fifty-five percent of Americans and 7 out of 10 young people support allowing gay couples to marry. A majority of Republicans, 52 percent, oppose it.
  Forty percent of Republicans say state legislatures should continue pushing for laws curbing abortion rights. That’s almost double the 22 percent among all Americans who hold that position, according to a Bloomberg National Poll conducted Sept. 20-23.
The findings reflect challenges for the Republican Party at a time when it’s working to boost its appeal with young people, women and minority voters to improve its national electoral prospects after 2012 losses. 
The April reaffirmation of the party’s opposition to gay marriage, passage of more than 200 anti-abortion-rights state bills in recent years, and the imposition of voter-identification rules by Republican-controlled legislatures may create even deeper wedges with those coveted constituencies.
“I just don’t think that you can have laws that dictate who you fall in love with and want to spend the rest of your life with,” said Florida poll participant Jennifer McCaffrey, 38, a registered nurse who considers herself Republican. “I’m pretty conservative in my views, but I feel like they should have the same benefits. I don’t see anything wrong with it.”

Touchstone Issues

Voters support candidates and parties for a myriad of reasons, including their religious beliefs, economic standing and family traditions. Yet some issues, such as gay marriage and abortion rights, are considered touchstones that help drive support or opposition.
“For many younger voters, these issues are a gateway into whether the party is a place they want to be,” a March 18 report on the 2012 presidential campaign results from the Republican National Committee said. “If our party is not welcoming and inclusive, young people and increasingly other voters will continue to tune us out.”
The risk for Republicans, nationally and in some states, is that maintaining an aggressive stance on those cultural issues could widen or harden support gaps evident in the exit polling of the 2012 presidential election.
In winning re-election, President Barack Obama garnered 55 percent of the women’s vote, 11 percentage points more than Republican challenger Mitt Romney. Among voters younger than 30, Obama won 60 percent support, more than 20 points higher than Romney’s share. The president also won 93 percent of the black vote and 71 percent of the Hispanic vote.

Math Problem

“The math isn’t working to Republicans’ favor,” said J. Ann Selzer, president of West Des Moines, Iowa-based Selzer & Co., which conducted the poll for Bloomberg. The survey of 1,000 adults has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points on the full sample and larger on subgroups.
A June 26 U.S. Supreme Court ruling cleared the way for gay marriage in California and invalidated a federal law that denied benefits to married same-sex couples. One upshot of the decision was to move the issue back to state legislatures where Republicans have pushed for laws and constitutional amendments to ban such unions.
McCaffrey, who lives in Tampa, said her views are shaped partly because she has family members who are gay. “I don’t want them to be excluded,” she said.
Since the release of the RNC’s “Growth and Opportunity Project” report, which urged a more inclusive tone and attitude toward those who disagree with the party on abortion rights, Republican lawmakers have passed dozens of measures to restrict access to the procedure.

House Action

This week, U.S. House Republicans unsuccessfully tried to attach anti-abortion-rights language to a measure that would lift the U.S. debt ceiling, which administration officials have said must be done by Oct. 17.
Poll participants were also asked about abortion in reference to bills passed by state legislatures since 2011.
Thirty-nine percent said current restrictions have gone too far and some should be repealed, while 29 percent said the current restrictions are acceptable yet states shouldn’t do more. Even a majority of Republicans, 51 percent, said either the current level is fine or states have gone too far. Four in 10 self-described party members want lawmakers to press for more limitations.
“From the words and actions of Republican legislators, you would expect Republicans to support greater restrictions on abortion, but a majority of them do not,” said Selzer.

Virginia Campaign

The political risks on abortion are playing out in this year’s race for governor in Virginia, a state that has become closely contested in presidential elections and is considered a bellwether for future political contests.
Recent polls show that Democrat Terry McAuliffe has taken the lead over Republican Ken Cuccinelli, powered largely by a lopsided advantage among women voters.
McAuliffe, the former head of the Democratic National Committee, is working to exploit the gender gap by portraying Cuccinelli, the state attorney general, as a candidate who is ideologically driven and hostile to women’s rights and concerns.
The McAuliffe campaign has spotlighted Cuccinelli’s efforts in the Virginia legislature to defund the women’s health organization Planned Parenthood, which runs abortion clinics; his support for legislation recognizing life from the moment of fertilization, which critics contend would lead to a ban on several common forms of birth control; and his opposition to no-fault divorce laws.

Gender Gap

In a Washington Post survey conducted Sept.19-22, McAuliffe led with 49 percent to Cuccinelli’s 44 percent, and a Sept. 17-19 NBC/Marist poll also had the Democrat up 5 percentage points, 43 percent to 38 percent.
Both surveys showed McAuliffe with an advantage among women that outweighs Cuccinelli’s edge with men. In the Post survey, McAuliffe was backed by 59 percent of women to Cuccinelli’s 35 percent -- a 24-point advantage -- while Marist had McAuliffe 18 points ahead among female voters.
On the issue of race, more than a third of the nation’s African-Americans said in the Bloomberg poll that relations are getting worse, almost five years into the administration of the first black president.
Eighteen percent of blacks said matters are improving, compared with 29 percent of whites who hold that view. Among non-whites, which includes blacks, Hispanics and others, 31 percent say things are getting worse compared with 24 percent of whites.

Court Cases

The survey’s findings come as the Supreme Court is scheduled next month to hear a case that stems from a 2006 Michigan ballot initiative involving race being used as a factor in college admissions. Other court challenges are being waged on voter-ID laws that critics say disadvantage minorities, the elderly and other groups.
National debates over race have occurred repeatedly during Obama’s presidency, most recently in late August during the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech in Washington.
That commemoration of the 1963 march was held two months after the Supreme Court struck down a key tenet of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, a decision that drew criticism from both the White House and Eric Holder, the country’s first black attorney general.
The 2012 shooting death of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin and the acquittal of his killer in July were mentioned by some poll participants as signs of deteriorating race relations.
Some responses to the case “that I read showed me that we have regressed from the progress that we made years ago,” said Ron Miser, 69, a retired U.S. Air Force computer programmer who is black and lives in Midwest City, Oklahoma.
The reporter on this story: John McCormick in Chicago atjmccormick16@bloomberg.net

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