Are jocks conservative? Honestly, I haven't followed sports much since I was a kid, but I have a lot of respect for it since, at least when it is functioning as it should, sports teaches conservative values: self-discipline, work ethic, competitiveness, merit, personal responsibility, rejection of excuses, etc.
So, this makes me wonder if athletes are, as a group, politically conservative. Off the top of my head, I can think of more famous Republican athletes--Gerald Ford, Jack Kemp, J.C. Watts, Steve Largent--but then there is Bill Bradley on the other side.
The General Social Survey asked 1,210 white Americans two questions: whom they voted for in 2000, and how well the term "athletic" describes them. Below, I compare those who said "very well" and "not at all":
Percent who voted for Bush in 2000
Athletic men 63.5
Unathletic men 46.7
Athletic women 62.5
Unathletic women 54.9
The difference is more striking for the men--I'm getting a mental image of the wimpy liberal guy here--but athletic women are also more likely to vote Republican. There weren't enough blacks to analyze, but based on the few cases, it looks like the percent of them that votes Democrat falls into the 80-90 percent range if they're athletes. Evidently, there is some connection between sports culture and conservatism.
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