STUDY: Conservatives Won’t Read An Opposing View, Even If Offered Money

in Against The Politics/Grab Bag/Life/Racy/WTF by

The term “motivated ignorance” has now reared to the forefront in a new study showing that Republicans will not read a view that is in opposition to theirs.

The kicker? Many were even offered the chance to win free money to do so.

The study comes from The Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, and its conclusion is nothing short of astounding: people are willingly motivated to avoid crosscutting information that downplays their own established ideology.

Simply put: people will not read differing opinions if it conflicts with their ingrained values.

In the study, over 200 participants were presented with only two different options: they could read and answer questions on a subject they agreed with, or the could simply read the opposing viewpoint.

They would not even have to answer questions on the viewpoint.

If the random people selected chose to read their affirmed point of view and answer the questions, they got $7.00. If they simply chose to read the opposing viewpoint, they would get $10.00.

More money for less work.

But, shockingly enough, 63% of the participants worked harder for the lesser amount of money in order to actively avoid the opposing point of view.

How is this motivated ignorance? Maybe they already know the opposition’s viewpoint?

Jeremy Frimer, a psychologist from the University of Winnipeg, says not so much.

In a study he conducted, Frimer not only gauged the phrase “learning alternative political points of view” to things such as “getting a tooth pulled” and “watching paint dry” (no, really, he did), he also tested each participant’s knowledge on the opposition’s point of view.

And what he found was that a staggering number of people blatantly failed the test when it came to their opposition’s point of view.

What does all of this mean? It means that people are turning down the chance to listen to the opposing side because it conflicts with their points of view even though they are wholly ignorant on why the other side has the point of view it has.

So, why single out Republicans?

Image courtesy of Twitter/@realDonaldTrump.

Because we currently have a Republican president at the helm that is volatile and uneducated. We cannot afford to continue to have “motivated ignorance” if our own President of the United States cannot even take the time to see the hypocrisy within his own political moves.

It’s time to step up and do what Republicans are unwilling to do, and that is educating ourselves on the other side of these issues.

Why? Because it is what will prevent another term of “President Donald Trump.”


Featured image courtesy of Pexels/Public Domain.

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