Drop in Childbirth Rate Directly Correlated to Number of Young Men Radicalized by the Republican Party: A Satire. Sort of.
Former Congressman, Joe Walsh (no relation), recently apologized again to the public for taking part in radicalizing the US Republican Party base, but as you are about to see from math derived by the calculator on my iPhone and a quick interpretation of complicated statistics, along with the not academically approved source of Wikipedia (2008, 2012, 2016, 2020) the damage has been done.
In the 2020 elections, 46% of people who voted for Donald Trump were age 30–44 (NYT). Overall, 53% of Trump’s votes came from men. If we assume that gender ratio is the same for the age demographic, that is around 18 million child-producing aged men who thought a radical and divisive candidate would be a great idea. 38% of all voters considered themselves moderates.
In 2016, the year that marks the beginning of neither candidate being desirable, 39% of voters considered themselves moderates.
In the 2012 presidential elections, which no one remembers, but consisted of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan (what? really?) 41% of the total number of voters considered themselves moderates. 40% Republican voters were single men, and that was ok.
When we go back further to 2008, we will see that 44% of the total voter population considered themselves moderate. 48% of Republican voters were men (that was ok, but not really ok because that was the Sarah Palin for VP year, and yes love women supporting women, but still).
Interestingly, in 2020, the US birthrate was down nearly one million babies, compared to the high of 2007 rates (3.75 million to 4.3 million) (AP). Both of those numbers seem like a lot of babies to me, but that is not the point.
What we see here is compelling argument that the drop in the number of moderate voters, which signifies more extreme views on either side, has happened in alignment with the US’s drop in childbirths per 1,000 women. Naturally, this means that the ability for two people to coordinate on views and want to produce children together has decreased.
The next step in this analysis is to look at the actual number of voters, which will show us that the drop in moderate voters is exactly correlated to the drop in childbirths.
Unfortunately, when you do the math, this compelling argument of fewer moderate voters is wrong. When you look at the number of voters, there were actually more voters who considered themselves moderate in 2020 than in each of the previous presidential elections, but there were also more voters in general, so this is where my iPhone calculations grind to a halt. The difference in these numbers maybe isn’t even statistically significant, which is my way of throwing around a stat word to impress the audience. I don’t remember how to calculate statistical significance and probably need Excel or SPSS to help.
2020 turnout: 159,690,457 * 38% moderate = 60,682,418.5
2016 turnout: 136,669,276 * 39% moderate = 53,301,017
2012 turnout: 129,235,000 * 41% moderate = 52,986,350
2008 turnout: 131,407,000 * 44% moderate = 57,819,080
In sum, there was still a higher percentage of conservative voters in 2020 than in the last few elections and, in 2008, there was a higher percentage of Republican voters who crossed over to not elect the Palin circus (9%) versus the other years in which Republican voters stuck with their team (6–7% voted democrat). Likewise, more Democrats also crossed over to vote Republican in previous years (7–10%) than in 2020 (5%), indicating more flexibility prior to the intense radicalization under Trump.
I still blame Joe Walsh for the political extremism that makes it hard to find a partner who can put politics aside enough to agree to disagree on some topics instead of relenting that his freedoms are under attack. It’s really hard to have a nice evening when someone is stressed out that his tax dollars are clearly all being poured into military veteran transgender surgeries (people are actually stressing). It’s all noise meant to divide. Both sides of the extremes are guilty of being provocative instead of responsible. Besides, the VA just sent me a “pain relief cream” instead of scheduling me for an MRI, so regardless of your views, there’s probably a low likelihood of the VA actually following through to conduct any of these surgeries. (update: this news does actually bother me, but not to the point that I’m stressing).
We can’t all agree on everything, but more of us need to refuse to be pawns in political (and geopolitical) games that affect our ability to hold friendships and relationships.
Further reading on who wins when we are divided:
Divide and rule: ten lessons about Russian political influence activities in Europe
The purpose of this study is to improve understanding of how Russia is conducting political influence activities…