Let’s say that you are driving to the Olympia capital for the first time and you see a group of people standing around chanting and holding signs that say “STOP ABORTIONS.” You stop and ask your friend on what she thinks in going on? You both think that it is a protest against abortion, so you start to walk around wondering what is going on. You are told by one of the group members that he is part of an interest group that fights for pro-life. Your friends start to wonder what an interest group is since pro-life if such a big issue to her, she wants to be a part of it too. According to Roskin, Cord, Medeiros and Jones (2010) an interest group is “an association that pressures government for policies it favors.” But are interest groups useful or do they just cause more problems? In this essay I will be explaining the different types of interest groups that there are, how interest groups are created and who are in interest groups, and how they are beneficial and not beneficial to the people who are supporters.
Interest groups have been around since the 1780s. Most of the topics that were focused on during that time were land ownership, debt and slavery (Interest Groups, 2003). “In 1791 the activities of interest groups were formally recognized in the First Amendment to the Constitution, which protected the people's right "to petition the government for a redress of grievances"(Interest Groups, 2003). “The term interest group covers just about any collection of people trying to influence government” (Roskin, el at, 2010).
There are many types of interest groups and issues that are focused on. Types of interest groups may include farmer, doctors, lawyers, teachers and other business members who have issues they are interested in the government possibly changing or trying to avoid change. Some interest groups are very large and focus on very large issues such as taxes, abortion, and gay marriage and some focus on causes rather than issues such as civil rights and gun control and environmental issues (Interest Groups, 2003).
One type of interest group is Corporative Resources. “Corporative Resources significant trait in interest group influence is the privileged, institutionalized integration of some groups into public decision making corporative resources consist in the ability to affect the economy as well as the production of public service” (Binderkrantz, 2008). Many people would not be as influenced if the people in the interest groups were not educated on the issues that they are trying to change. Interest groups possess these resources because they represent particular groups in the private or public sector. Groups with such resources are more likely to obtain a privileged position in corporatist structures and can therefore be expected to rely more on the administrative strategy than other groups explains Binderkrantz (2008).
Another type of interest groups is public interest groups. “Public interest groups are environmental or...