Pope to Visit ’Pentecostalized’ Brazil
When Benedict XVI arrives in Sao Paolo, he will encounter a country where, a Pew survey finds, the rapid growth of pentecostal sects along with increasing secularism are threatening Catholicism’s historic dominance.
High Court Decision Could Raise Abortion’s Profile in Campaign
Although the court did not entirely eliminate the health exception, Wednesday’s 5-4 Supreme Court decision upholding a federal law banning a controversial abortion procedure probably made the waiver less meaningful. This will almost certainly energize both sides in the abortion debate and put pressure on presidential contenders to take clearer positions on the issue.
Teens, Privacy & Online Social Networks
A new survey and a series of focus groups, conducted by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, study teens’ online management of their personal information on social networking websites. The study suggests that internet life poses some potential risks for online teens, e.g. 32% (and 43% of social-networking teens) have been contacted by complete strangers.
Most Say Imus’s Punishment Was Appropriate
A new survey finds that Americans generally agree with the punishment radio host Don Imus received for the racist and sexist remarks he made about the Rutgers University’s women basketball team. Nonetheless, there are substantial racial differences in views of Imus’s punishment, and the media’s coverage of the story.
Events in Iraq Top Don Imus in News Interest
The war in Iraq continued to attract broad public attention, despite drawing far less news coverage than the Imus flap. Overall, 26% of Americans cited the war as the story they followed most closely, compared with 20% who followed the Imus story most closely.
The Immigration Divide
With his renewed push for a comprehensive immigration bill, President Bush is advancing a potentially powerful political wedge issue, but one with an unlikely twist: Immigration fractures the president’s own party at least as much as it divides the opposition.
The Republican Party has traditionally garnered it strongest backing from wealthier voters. But the recent overall decline in Republican Party affiliation nationwide has taken a toll even on GOP support among affluent voters.
Assessing the Imus Mess
Even before Don Imus got the word that MSNBC and CBS had dropped him, a quick survey of the media coverage in the week since the veteran talk host uttered his infamous April 4 racial and gender insult suggests he will face a tough battle to re-establish his reputation and viability.
The Culture War and the Coming Election
No hot-button issue currently dominates in the presidential campaigns, but court decisions and other events could change that quickly.
News Leaks Remain Divisive, but Libby Case Has Little Impact
Attitudes towards news leaks are virtually the same now as in 1986, with the public about evenly split between those who say leaks serve the public interest and those who say they harm it.