The Daily Escape:
Taylor Creek, South Lake Tahoe, CA – November 2020 iPhone 7 photo by Julien21012101
Millennials joke about how Fox News did to their parents what the parents believed video games would do to their kids. Apparently, that’s true: A new survey from PRRI (the Public Religion Research Institute) found that Fox News watching Republicans, the 40% of Republicans who trust Fox News as their primary source of television news, believe they are the most discriminated-against Americans.
The researchers broke Republican respondents into Fox News watchers, and non-Fox News watchers, and then compared their answers to those of all Americans.
Compared to the nation as a whole, Fox News watching Republicans are whiter (81% vs. 63% for all Americans), more likely to be male (57% vs. 48% of all Americans), and older (32% are over age 65 vs. 21% of all Americans). Fox News Republicans are more likely than all Americans to identify as white evangelical Protestants (36% vs. 13%), and more likely to say they attend religious services at least once a week (46% vs. 27%). Fox News watching Republicans are more likely than non-Fox News Republicans to identify as conservatives (77% vs. 59% of non-Fox News Republicans).
The truly stunning finding is what’s said when both groups were asked if there’s “a lot of discrimination” against Christians and Whites:
Nearly 75% of the Fox-watchers feel Christians are discriminated against. They also think White people have it rough (58%), but only 36% say the same about Black people. Imagine how delusional you have to be to think White Christians have it worse than everybody else.
These people actively think the people who have the fewest hurdles to overcome in our society are at the greatest disadvantage. It seems safe to say their answers are mind-bendingly wrong.
Fox-watching Christians: Your religion is shared by between 70%-75% of Americans. Your churches are tax-exempt under federal law and are effectively subsidized by taxpayers. Somehow, despite these advantages many of you somehow see yourselves as the most oppressed group in America?
Is it even possible to be an OPPRESSED MAJORITY?
This view is held by some members of the religion that refuse to respect the constitutional separation of Church and State by claiming that your freedom to worship as you see fit is being crushed under the heel of godless secularism. Disliking those “who would ban God from the public square” doesn’t make what you are feeling persecution.
Fox News has supported Trump more strongly than any other news outlet. For decades, Fox has played a prominent role in shaping the Conservative policy agenda and supporting Republican partisan politics.
Over the last four years, Trump has used Fox as a personal platform, appearing on air hundreds of times during his presidency. Currently, the 15% of Americans who cite Fox News as their most trusted television news source, is roughly equal to the combined influence of NBC, ABC, and CBS (16%), and larger than that of local television news (12%), or CNN (11%).
Biden’s aspiration is to try to heal the divisions in the US during his term in office. But, tens of millions of Republicans support Trump retaining power by any means necessary. With America possibly facing a coup, is Biden’s hope even realistic?
Healing requires coming to a shared vision of the future. It requires some form of forgiveness and repentance by both sides for real and imagined insults. But, when we see exactly how much grievance and entitlement there is among these old, White Fox-watchers, it seems very doubtful that we can meet in the middle, understand each other, and change our behavior.
It’s not gonna happen. Take a look at this chart from Media Matters:
This covers the period starting four days after the presidential election, until 14 days post-election. It’s one thing to champion free speech, but this kind of prolonged propaganda attack will surely kill our democracy. If you doubt that take another look at how it’s Fox-watchers who believe that they are the most oppressed group in America.
Time to wake up America! How can reality be normalized when there’s no effort to ditch the propaganda? And it’s not just the old White Foxers. Nearly 74 million people voted to keep Trump in office.