Monday, September 17, 2018

Liberals think patriotism is not important for national unity

The General Social Survey asked 1,182 respondents, "How much do you agree of disagree that strong patriotic feelings in America are needed for America to remain united?"  I'm not sure how a country stays united if many of its people dislike it. 

What predicts the view that patriotism is not important for unity? I conducted ordinary least squares (OLS) regression to see which predictors matter after removing the influence of other factors.   


Patriotism unimportant for national unity

Age   -.10**
Female   .03 
Nonwhite   -.04
Immigrant   .07*
Education   .03
Church Attendance   -.08*
Liberalism   .23***
City Size   -.01

Thinking patriotism is not important for national unity is significantly predicted by: youth, being an immigrant, low church attendance, and being a liberal. The effects are standardized, so the larger the number, the stronger the effect. In other words, liberalism is the factor most strongly associated with devaluing patriotism. 

This question seems to tap clear thinking as much as attitudes toward patriotism. To put it starkly, would you expect a group to be unified if half the group adores the group and half hates the group? What binds them together if not identification with the group? 

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