Roy Exum: Our Morals By The Numbers

Monday, June 2, 2014 - by Roy Exum
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

A Gallup Poll – just released – showed that 74 percent of Americans believe our nation’s moral values are getting worse and a full six percent of us believe that is our country’s biggest problem. As we begin a new month, let’s look at the last one based solely on Gallup’s research in the month of May because what you may believe to be a huge problem isn’t exactly what you’ll find on a sampling the poll just revealed.

In last month’s study, jobs/unemployment was still at the top of our worry list with a full 20 percent making it the choice. Another 19 percent picked dissatisfaction-with-government in this, an election year, while the economy in general was third at 17 percent. Poor health care, just before our Veterans Administration blow-up, was at 11 percent and the federal budget rounded out the Top Five at eight percent.

Ethics and moral decline/dishonesty followed at six percent, poor education at five percent, while poverty and foreign aid were tied at four percent. The gap between rich and poor, immigration issues, environmental/pollution, and race relations/racism rounded out the list at three percent each.

I know, numbers can numb you but let’s hone in on “moral acceptability” because, Toto, I don’t believe we are in Kansas anymore. Our values have changed and the Gallup folks presented their findings in five ranges.

“Highly acceptable” is birth control, with a whopping 90 percent of those contacted believing it is acceptable. That is a record high.

In the “Largely Acceptable” class we find divorce at 69 percent (a record), sex between an unmarried man and woman at 66 percent, medical research using stem cells obtained from human embryos 65 percent (a record), gambling 62 percent, the death penalty 61 percent, wearing clothing made of animal fur 58 percent, having a baby outside of marriage 58 percent (a record) gay or lesbian relations 58 percent (a record) and medical testing on animals 57 percent.

There were two “Contentious” topics and both are record highs. Just over half of us now approve Doctor-assisted suicide (52 percent) while 42 percent of Americans approve abortion. Remember, these are generalities.

“Largely unacceptable” are animal cloning at 34 percent (a record) pornography at 33 percent and sex between teenagers at 30 percent.

“Highly unacceptable” are suicide at 19 (a record), Polygamy, where a married person has more than one spouse at the same time, at 14 percent (a record), cloning humans at 13 percent (a record) and – the lowest rating – married men and women having an affair at 7 percent.

According to the Gallup website, President Barack Obama has a 44 percent approval rate and a 52 percent disapproval rate. There are 53 percent in our nation who are thriving, 43 percent who are struggling, and 4 percent who are suffering. The happiness meter is 43 percent and the stress meter is 10 percent.

Politically the percentage of Democrats who say an issue is morally acceptable has increased in 10 issues while Independents have moved a little slower. Republican views, it was noted, have changed little.

In doctor-assisted suicide, for example, 63 percent of the Democrats say it is acceptable, compared to 54 percent of Independents and 40 percent of Republicans. The party lines for abortion revealed a 59 percent approval by Democrats, 41 percent by Independents and 28 percent by Republicans. Divorce? Democrats at 78 percent, Independents at 69 percent and Republicans at 60 percent.

For the record, these results were based on telephone polling at 1,028 adults living in all 50 states and Washington D.C. The margin of error, according to Gallup’s standards, is four percent and the confidence level is 95 percent.

So there you have it. That’s the way our nation was thinking May 8-11, 2014.

royexum@aol.com



Overblown Nonsense

Attorney John Cavett said it is ridiculous "to suggest that she was the perpetrator." Thank God that someone stated how I perceive this drama. If Bobby Stone had not crossed reasonable boundaries in an argument, then assaulted his wife, none of this would be the drama that it has been made out to be. Listen folks, we have serious problems here in Chattanooga and do not ... (click for more)

Send Your Opinions To Chattanoogan.com

We welcome your opinions at Chattanoogan.com. Email to news@chattanoogan.com . We require your real first and last name and contact information. There is no word limit, but if your article is too long you may lose your reader. Please focus more on issues than personal attacks. (click for more)

Attorney Says Lacie Stone, Advisor To Mayor Berke, Is Victim, Not Instigator

The attorney for advisor to Mayor Andy Berke Lacie Stone said she has been thrust into the spotlight, but said she is "the victim of an unprovoked attack" by her husband, Bobby Stone. Attorney John Cavett said it is ridiculous "to suggest that she was the perpetrator." Mr. Stone is facing charges of domestic assault and vandalism. Attorney Cavett said, "It is unfortunate ... (click for more)

Dr. Russell Dyer Chosen As Director Of Schools By Cleveland City School Board

The Cleveland City School board unanimously voted Thursday afternoon to offer the job of director of Schools to Dr. Russell Dyer. Dr. Dyer serves as the chief of staff of schools in Collierville, Tn.  If Dr. Dyer accepts the school board's contract, he will be paid $132,500 a year.  After contract negotiations, the board plans for Dr. Dyer to start at Cleveland City ... (click for more)

Peterson's Emotional Race Helps Signal Mountain Win

MURFREESBORO – It’s one thing to win one state championship in track.  It becomes a tougher challenge to repeat and at times impossible to even think about a three-peat. But that’s what the Signal Mountain Lady Eagles did here at the Dean A. Hayes Track & Soccer Stadium on the campus of Middle Tennessee State University early Thursday evening. Signal Mountain ... (click for more)

Baylor Rocks GPS, 8-2, For Shot At 10th State Softball Championship

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – The magic number Baylor’s softball team has in mind now is 10. After polishing off bitter rival Girls Preparatory School – a seemingly constant opponent at TSSAA’s Spring Fling – by 8-2 Thursday in the Division II-AA winner’s bracket final, the Lady Red Raiders are zeroed in on a game that could produce their 10 th  state championship.  “It ... (click for more)