Presentation on theme: " Bus companies begin to suffer financial hardship because a large percentage of riders were minorities. Three Stages to Correcting a Social Injustice."— Presentation transcript:
Bus companies begin to suffer financial hardship because a large percentage of riders were minorities. Three Stages to Correcting a Social Injustice Have to take a stand Special interest group must join cause to increase pressure Political system must translate the demands into laws to end injustice
What affects it? Shifting Public Interest Different times cover different interests 1960’s: Nuclear war, crime, narcotics 1980’s: War on drugs, soaring budget deficit, and environment Lack of consensus We rarely agree whole-heartedly on anything… Time Lag Once we do agree, it takes the government a long time to move on the issue and pass laws
But we can all come to a consensus on this … this tattoo was a mistake, right? And now it is time for me to enlighten you all about tattoos. CT: If you had to get a tattoo what would it be of and where?
How to measure public opinion… Straw Poll- usually flawed because only those who feel strongly participate Scientific Sampling- cross sampling (members of the population who make up a good representation) Improvements in techniques- they make mistakes some times, have learned not to claim 100% effectiveness Difficulties with public opinion- it’s constantly shifting
Christmas Break of 2012 and the Washington Post Poll Introduce myself as a government teacher… Questions about income and who I voted for… Pronouncing “John Boehner” Hillary Clinton, not relevant at the time (had retired) Using big words Hanging up Or did I? Mockery Spell Check
Propaganda- information designed to push your opinion a certain way Mass Media: designed to reach large numbers quickly and cheaply; radio, TV, newspaper, magazines Most people get news from the TV, which usually has a bias even though they claim not to… Printed sources usually have more accuracy, but they can also be biased by hiding stories on back pages… Editorial pages are the place to find opinion
Movies: These also carry a message whether or not you realize it… can you name any that do? Advertising: job is to “sell” the candidate to you by highlighting their successes Government: politicians try to shape our opinions Economic Influences: people support what keeps their money safe… for example, “I’m all in favor of helping minorities to achieve equality until it affects me...”
What about SNL? Do they try to persuade opinions one way or the other? Want to see the 2000 election debates on SNL, considered by many to be one of the greatest skits of all time?
They ask for political favors when decisions are being made that affect their interests. Why have pressure groups grown so much? Free speech and assembly allows them to exist, especially with broadening interpretations of the law over the years They give a lot of money to campaigns They provide some insight for how people feel to their representatives They also provide experts when writing new legislation They are effective… if they weren’t, they wouldn’t exist (natural selection)
In the past they haven’t always been so good… 1800’s: politicians supported by special interests usually sold their vote and ignored public interest… also ironically enough happens with Illinois Governor in 2008. Today: they can take you out to eat, provide some services… but they can’t pay for their votes, contribute money for the legislator’s private use, make illegally large donations. Also, most government officials have to make their wealth publicly known to avoid corruption
Blagojevich anyone? Want to see what I’m talking about?
Laws proposed by the people are called initiatives or propositions Write up the law File it with the right person Circulate a petition with enough signatures Verify those signatures to keep fraud from happening Educate the public Voted on by the public The law comes into play Some people argue that initiatives are flawed… Dishonest methods, slows down normal processes, confuses voters, badly written Some say it’s flawed, but it has its merits… Increases popular sovereignty, counteracts special interest groups, keeps public interest
Referendums- approval or rejection of a law by the voters Mandatory: required by law to be placed in front of voters and approved by them for it to go into effect Optional: discretionary if felt it is important enough Petition: vote on a recently passed law if they don’t agree with it (if an optional referendum is called into question, the petition places it before the voters on the ballot.)
Impeachment Recall election (vote of lost confidence) Can’t be used more than once during person’s term in office Can’t be done at the national level, would require a new amendment I believe France and some other European countries have the ability to recall a President in the middle of his/her term….
Debate people Write your representatives Don’t be upset if you get a “canned” response, remember they are busy Visit them in office, but don’t make them feel uncomfortable or creeped out Talk to the media about what upsets you, they are always looking for a story But remember… You can’t make people listen, but you have plenty of chances to voice your opinion.