Dumb Things Americans Believe

28 08 2010

A recent Newsweek article contained some startling statistics….

20% of Americans believe that the Sun rotates around the Earth!!

90% of Americans can’t find Afghanistan on a map – even when told to look in Asia!!

24% of Americans believe that Obama is a Muslim!!

It just boggles the mind doesn’t it? And we are supposed to be the most advanced, developed country in the world?! This ignorance does, however, help explain why Islamophobia has become so ubiquitous in our country and fundamental constitutional rights such as freedom of religion are debated when it comes to building mosques to support our community.



3 responses

28 08 2010

Heh. To be fair, the Pew Poll had a sample size of a 1,002–out of 300+ million. I could find 1,000 people who believe cigarettes cure cancer and alcohol boosts brain cell growth.

1 09 2010

Obviously, the sample size is meant to be a subset of the population. It is not logistically possible or practical to poll several million people. Pew Research Center is one of the most reliable sources for this type of information. According to their site, the sampling error is “plus or minus 3 percentage points with a 95% confidence interval. This means that in 95 out of every 100 samples of the same size and type, the results we would obtain will vary by no more than plus or minus 3 percentage points from the result we would get if we could interview every member of the population. Thus, the chances are very high (95 out of 100) that any sample we draw will be within 3 points of the true population value.”

15 09 2010
Celebrating Eid with Lemon Cake « BhattySaab

[…] Associate #6: “I heard Obama is a Muslim”. Well, he has stated several times that he is not. Although, even if he was it shouldn’t matter.  Muslim Americans represent one of the most well-educated, affluent, and contributing members of society. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of incorrect information that many Americans believe. […]

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