Note the big drop in the past week. Obama had been bumping along at around pretty much even approval/disapproval, but then he made a principled, correct stand on what religious freedom means to us a nation…and his approval drops?

And, by the way, this isn’t even a mosque. It’s a small prayer center inside of a muslim community center. Think of a YMCA with a chapel in it. That’s all that’s being proposed. I think when people here “mosque” they think of a big domed building that’s sitting right across from ground zero…but that ain’t it. This thing is two blocks away on a side street and tucked inside of a much larger proposed complex.

But wait…there’s more!

Pew finds that more Americans now think that Obama is a muslim.

Wanna know why?

When asked how they learned about Obama’s religion in an open-ended question, 60% of those who say Obama is a Muslim cite the media. Among specific media sources, television (at 16%) is mentioned most frequently. About one-in-ten (11%) of those who say Obama is a Muslim say they learned of this through Obama’s own words and behavior.

The ignorance is just jaw dropping. What’s more, this study was taken BEFORE the mosque thing popped up. So who knows what those numbers look like now.

It’s weeks like this that make me think this country could be doomed. Because if people are this uninformed (or willfully misinformed), how is any politician going to be able to sell us on what really needs to happen over the course of the next couple decades?

Those in the know realize that we have major pain ahead and that the course we’re on is unsustainable. However, Americans have been brought up to be selfish and greedy, and while that works at the corporate level to power innovation, it divorces us from the reality of what it means to be a unified nation. We are individuals, yes, but we must also understand that even though we have a huge amount of cultural, spiritual and political differences…we’re all in this together and it’s going to take all of us to dig ourselves out of the hole we’ve created. And it shouldn’t take something like 9/11 to rally us again.

Excuse me, but I’m now going to reread Watchmen.

  • Chris

    I think it shows the power of the Republican misinformation machine. And Justin you are just concerned about the future of the country now? After 8 years of Bush, with all the idiotic moronic crap we had to deal with even then?

  • Chris

    Read this and tell me how much faith you have in the voters of this country.

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  • Justin Gardner

    I love how people are lionizing Ayn Rand. Maybe they should dig a little deeper into her bio. They probably won’t be impressed by what they find.

  • mw

    The poll about Obama’s religion does not bother me much. It is pretty consistent that around 20% of the population are always eager to tell pollsters that they believe the most outrageous things about a sitting President. Of course the percentage goes much higher when only the party out of power is questioned.

    During the Bush administration 22% believed that Bush knew about the 9/11 attacks in advance. That rose to 35% of Democrats who believed he had advance knowledge of the attack and an astonishing 61% of Democrats who believed he did have advance knowledge or did not know if he had advanced knowledge.

    If anything, this poll is a reason for cautious optimism. It means the ignorant/looney opposition under Obama represents a smaller percentage of the population than the ignorant/looney opposition under Bush.

  • blackout

    I think the Bush question is confusing. Respondents could have been referring to the now infamous memos that warned of similar attacks for instance. If the respondent conflates that memo with *knowledge of the attack*, that doesn’t exactly make them a conspiracy theorist. The question isn’t formulated in a way to separate those folks from the tinfoil hat 911/Truther crowd. It’s difficult for pollsters to frame questions in such a way as to defeat/capture the wing nuts among us. ;-)

    I think the question of whether or not Obama is a Muslim is less subject to interpretation, but I don’t put it past those being polled to a) screw with pollsters or b) get carried away by their partisan antipathy to the subject, which is surely part of the Bush/911 reponses from Dems as well.

  • dualdiagnosis

    Those stupid, evil Republicans..

    …41 percent of Democrats and 31 percent of liberals “don’t know” Obama’s religion…

    Less than half of Democrats say the President is a Christian [46%]. Less than half of African-Americans say the President is a Christian [43%]. Less than half of people who give Obama positive job approval ratings say he’s a Christian.

  • Justin Gardner


    Did I say ANYTHING about Republicans? No. I said Americans. And no party affiliation is mentioned in the post. Although, the Pew poll does show that Republicans are much more likely to believe this.

    But hey, nice try.

    Still, this is an American problem…and it’s crazy. But that’s how things go.

  • theWord

    I’m sorry but this is the logical end place for the mamby pamby, we can’t point fingers everybody is a shade of gray thinking leads. (The same thing is happening with the Mosque) Are there idiots everywhere? Yes. Are there people that if they hear things over and over might be intellecually lazy and accept or not stand up to the lies. Yes. Are there people not living up to their best selves, Yes. BUT…

    Who is pushing it? Who gains from muddying the water? It is the GOP and their agents. The vile place our politics are at is IMO laid squarely at their door. They know it works and absent any ethics, morals, or principles or IMO decent Americans pushing back, they just keep chumming the waters. It’s why I suggested calling the people showing principles and calling to condemn those who don’t. Or keep being “fair and balanced” and don’t push back against evil and see if they change. It’s worked great for the last 30 years or so I guess.

  • kranky kritter

    Who is pushing it? Who gains from muddying the water? It is the GOP and their agents. The vile place our politics are at is IMO laid squarely at their door. They know it works and absent any ethics, morals, or principles or IMO decent Americans pushing back, they just keep chumming the waters.

    Who could argue with that? Seriously. I mean, why bother? What would be the point?

    I agree with mw about the poll. Folks here would be much better off learning to read polls by comparing the results of loots of them, to get an eye towards what regular folk pay attention to and know about. It’s time to let going of being shocked and appalled by what regular folks think.

    Jaw-dropping? Maybe if you haven’t ever read a poll before.

  • Michael LaRocca

    Forgive me for teaching your grandmother to suck eggs, but we’ve got people just looking for a reason to dislike Obama. The real problem is that he’s just too damn good. Maybe he needs to say “nukular” or something.

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