What the …. ?

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I just got off the phone with an automated 45-second survey. It asked about half a dozen questions that require yes/no answers: do you support stem cell research? Do you believe marriage should be between one man and one woman? Do you consider yourself pro-life? Do you consider yourself a Republican? Do you consider yourself a Democrat?

I gave my yes/no answers to these questions, all the while thinking back to my methodology class at Missouri State back in ’99. What did I learn from that class? That, just through wording a question, one can manipulate the answer. And, I was fairly impressed that these questions were simple, straightforward and there was simply no room for interpretation. Are you pro-life? Yes or no, that’s the only answer you can give. None of this wishy washy stuff of, “Well, I think it should be kept legal, but morally and ethically, I don’t agree with it.” So, again, I was impressed. Then, all that fell apart. The final question was(and I think I quote this accurately), “Have you ever donated to a political campaign, a non-for-profit agency or a church?” What kind of question is that? I had to answer yes. But, could my answer be misconstrued? Abso-freaking-lutely! I mean, because as a kid I would drop coins into the offering plate at church, does that mean I’m in the same boat as George Sorros donating to the Democratic party? Since I gave a donation to the Seeing Eye, does that make me no different than religious organizations that donate to the GOP to try to overturn Roe vs. Wade?

Look, everyone is allowed to his or her political leanings and opinions. Those differences are what make the world go around. Yet, when a question is so stupidly worded, how can we actually get a pulse on what Americans think and feel? Just keep that in time next time you see some stat telling you the opinions of Americans.



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