Religion plays a major role in American society today. The stance that people take on their religion can affect the social and political choices that they make. Having a loving God view and relationship with him also takes place in these decisions being made. Researchers Unnever, Bartkowski and Cullen explore in their article, “God Imagery and Opposition to Abortion and Capital Punishment: A Partial Test of Religious Support for the Consistent Life Ethic”, as to whether having a close relationship with God will allow people to oppose both capital punishment and abortion, the consistent life ethic.
The hypothesis that researchers concluded for the consistent ...view middle of the document...
Although, those who do hold a consistent life ethic must be able to push through political views and hold both instances of life taking as sacred. This can be done by connecting an image of a loving God to the consistent life ethic (2010).
Data gathering Method
Before delving into experiments of their own, researchers looked at pervious data to gain a comparison at to what stances people were currently at. Previous poll data showed that roughly 70% of adult Americans supported the death penalty for murderers in 2008. Abortion data in 1998 however, only showed that 59% opposed it for different reasons. All together, there was only a small minority that held the “consistent life ethic”, opposing both death penalty and abortion. Ross and Kaplan(1993), investigated college students and their views on who they believed to have rights to life, that is, a belief that either God, the state or the individual has the right to take away life. What they found was that students who classified themselves as God-centered opposed abortion more than the Individual -centered students, while the students who viewed themselves as State-centered supported the death penalty. Unfortunately this methodology did not answer the question as to a person opposing both abortion and capital punishment was given to the attitude that only God can control life (2010)
While taking all previous data into account, researchers conducted their experiment by using the GSS(General Social Survey) in which death penalty questions were on 3 ballots and questions about attitudes towards abortion were on two ballots. In study one, researchers first examined whether having a close relationship with God would determine if an individual rejected the death penalty. The second study would determine if having a close relationship with God would cause people to oppose abortion. Then by comparing the first and second study, it would determine the amount of people who opposed both these issues and who showed a consistent life ethic. Researches were also able to determine whether the consistent life ethic and a view of a loving God varied across different religions. For the dependent variables of this study, those who opposed only capital punishment were asked if they opposed or supported the death penalty for criminals convicted of murder. The answers that could be marked on the ballots included “oppose”, “favor”, and “don’t know”. Marking a 1 on the ballot signified and opposed answer, while marking a O meant another option.
In study number 2, the measure of examining who opposed abortion was constructed in the two ballots with the same answering system as the death penalty ballots. Respondents were given a question such as, “...should [it] be possible for a pregnant woman to obtain legal abortion “(2010). Following this question 6 possible answers were available, 1)”If thee is a strong chance of serious defect in the baby?”, 2)”If she is married and does not want any more children”, 3) “If the...