Chapter 5 TXBK Notes
Chapter 5 TXBK Notes POSC 103
Popular in American National Government
Popular in Political Science
This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Tiara Notetaker on Saturday September 17, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to POSC 103 at Towson University taught by Joseph Rudolph in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 14 views. For similar materials see American National Government in Political Science at Towson University.
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Date Created: 09/17/16
Chapter 5 – Public Opinion and Political Participation 5.1 Public Opinions: What Americans Think About Politics Public opinion –the views, attitudes, and ideas held by individuals in a community Polling – the process of using social science methods to get an accurate sense of the public’s view on an issue Polling results show that Americans are proud of their country more than members of other countries, but almost 1 in 4 Americans can’t name the country from which we gained independence. Core values: Equality: whether or not Americans actually think that all people are equal, we believe the government should treat everyone equal. We disagree on the level of government involvement in improving the lives of minorities. Freedom: Americans believe in doing what is best for themselves (strong support for st the 1 Amendment), but disagree on what counts as interfering with other’s freedoms Consent of the governed: Americans believe the majority should rule, but with limited power so the minority can be protected Capitalism: Americans believe in the value of hard work, private property, economic competition, and profit. Freedom > equality. Everyone starts off equal, but is free to pursue selfinterests and potentially become wealthy. 5.2 The Sources of Public Opinion: Political Socialization Political socialization – the process that shapes how people think about politics Agents of socialization: “teachers” of politics o Family: transfers attitudes towards authority (police and presidents) o School: student government associations, experiences with students of different races and religions, teaches history, social studies, politics, etc. o Peer groups: pressure to conform 5.3 Political Participation Political efficacy – the belief that one can accomplish something by participating Sense of duty – the belief that it is one’s responsibility to be politically active Party identification – psychological attachment to a political party motivates one to participate in the political process Forms of participation: Staying informed (TV, newspapers) Contacting public officials (letters, petitions) Protests (marches, boycotts, picketing, violence – riots/assassinations) o Civil disobedience – breaking the law to make a point (Exp. Sitins) o Passive resistance – not doing anything (Exp. Laying down when an officer is trying to make an arrest) Rational actor model – a person will choose the action that gives them the most benefit at the least cost. If benefit > cost, a person will participate in the political process Exp. Costs = registering to vote, staying up to date, going to the polls, participating or organizing a rally, writing a letter, creating a petition. Benefits = the chance your vote will put the person you want into office, the chance that the person will stick to what they said they’d do once they’re in office, the chance that your letter/petition/rally will make a difference. Some lack resources and can’t afford what it costs to participate