View Poll Results: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

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  • Yes, Democrats are more empathetic

    20 51.28%
  • Yes, Republicans are more empathetic

    2 5.13%
  • Yes, and that's a good thing, people should look out for themselves, others will for themselves

    4 10.26%
  • No, there is no empathy gap

    13 33.33%
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Thread: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

  1. #31
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    Re: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

    Quote Originally Posted by aberrant85 View Post
    You've got a 5 year old opinion article that says one thing, and there's the Washington post article above with numbers saying something else.

    In either case, sympathy is not the same as empathy. Sympathy is one-sided. You feel sorry for the man on the street. You project your emotion onto them. You are judging their situation. You can still do good things out of sympathy, but the connection is very one directional.

    Empathy requires you to put yourself in the person's POV. You do not have to feel sorry for a gay couple to ask yourself how you would feel in their situation if you were not allowed to marry the person you love. From their POV you can make conclusions you might not have on your own.

    There is a cognitive leap between the two. With empathy you are able to recognize diverse viewpoints in order to question your positions and to foster negotiation and compromise.

    In short, you sympathize for someone, you empathize with someone.
    Sorry to pile on here aberrant. How does one measure empathy? Is this just something that you feel, and liberals in turn simply feel like they are more empathetic so they can slap each other on the back and call it a good day in Congress? "Oh, we feel much better now that we have legislated charity". I guess if you want to say liberals are more empathetic, that's one thing...but how do you back it up other than referring to yourselves as "bleeding hearts" or "progressive"?

  2. #32
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    Re: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

    I don't know about an empathy gap - people's politics don't make them decent or not - but I do know that there's a definite "confidence" gap between liberals and conservatives. Conservatives believe in the unlimited ability of individuals to work hard and thrive, building a life for themselves and the people they love, while liberals believe that individuals are at the mercy of fate, through no fault of their own, and must be saved by the hand of big government. That is the biggest difference between conservatives and liberals - conservatives believe in the greatness of people and liberals believe in the greatness of government.
    "Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views." William F. Buckley Jr.

  3. #33
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    Re: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

    Quote Originally Posted by SBu View Post
    Sorry to pile on here aberrant. How does one measure empathy? Is this just something that you feel, and liberals in turn simply feel like they are more empathetic so they can slap each other on the back and call it a good day in Congress? "Oh, we feel much better now that we have legislated charity". I guess if you want to say liberals are more empathetic, that's one thing...but how do you back it up other than referring to yourselves as "bleeding hearts" or "progressive"?
    No problem, SBu. Empathy would be hard to measure. I suppose a test might be how broad your coalition is, whether it is represented by people from many walks of life. Of course that only measures who is in your camp, not how much empathy they have. And of course if you have poor people in your party and they vote for things beneficial to the poor, that's not really empathy at all, that's self interest. But it would reason that if the majority of your party are not like you but they accept you and work with you to achieve things in your interest, they are displaying empathy.
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  4. #34
    Advisor aberrant85's Avatar
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    Re: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

    Quote Originally Posted by CanadaJohn View Post
    I don't know about an empathy gap - people's politics don't make them decent or not - but I do know that there's a definite "confidence" gap between liberals and conservatives. Conservatives believe in the unlimited ability of individuals to work hard and thrive, building a life for themselves and the people they love, while liberals believe that individuals are at the mercy of fate, through no fault of their own, and must be saved by the hand of big government. That is the biggest difference between conservatives and liberals - conservatives believe in the greatness of people and liberals believe in the greatness of government.
    There's some truth in that. I'd also say that conservatives believe more in competition while liberals believe more in cooperation.
    "Obamacare delenda est"

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    Re: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

    Republicans, or more rightly conservatives, are more empathetic because all evidence points to the vast majority of voluntary charitable giving comes from conservatives. Conservative policies also are aimed at lifting the whole person, body and soul, not just limited to providing for temporary needs.

  6. #36
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    Re: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

    There is and that's a good thing. Empathy is not something that we want in politics. Sympathy is. We can understand that people have problems and we can be sorry that they do. We should not be putting ourselves into their places and finding out what they want because we're trying to feel what they feel. Empathy is a net negative.
    There is nothing demonstrably true that religion can provide the world that cannot be achieved more rationally through entirely secular means.

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    Re: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

    Quote Originally Posted by aberrant85 View Post
    No problem, SBu. Empathy would be hard to measure. I suppose a test might be how broad your coalition is, whether it is represented by people from many walks of life. Of course that only measures who is in your camp, not how much empathy they have. And of course if you have poor people in your party and they vote for things beneficial to the poor, that's not really empathy at all, that's self interest. But it would reason that if the majority of your party are not like you but they accept you and work with you to achieve things in your interest, they are displaying empathy.
    How is legislating charity showing empathy? Is it empathic to the people you're forcing to pay this legislated charity? Sorry, I think when you're acting on one party to help another you aren't being empathic at all.

  8. #38
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    Re: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

    Quote Originally Posted by johndylan1 View Post
    Republicans, or more rightly conservatives, are more empathetic because all evidence points to the vast majority of voluntary charitable giving comes from conservatives. Conservative policies also are aimed at lifting the whole person, body and soul, not just limited to providing for temporary needs.
    I agree. Is it really compassion to help someone out with someone else's money?
    A quick search shows that conservatives are significantly more likely to give of their personal income to charity than liberals.

  9. #39
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    Re: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paratrooper View Post
    I agree. Is it really compassion to help someone out with someone else's money?
    A quick search shows that conservatives are significantly more likely to give of their personal income to charity than liberals.
    that all depends on if you believe we pass the test of a civilized society

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    Re: Is There an Empathy Gap Between Democrats and Republicans?

    Quote Originally Posted by Unitedwestand13 View Post
    that all depends on if you believe we pass the test of a civilized society
    What is a civilized society to you? I don't see anything civilized about government welfare.

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