Unanswered Questions Essay

793 words - 4 pages

Continuing on the lines of ideology, I would continue my research by centering my focus more on public opinion relating to social welfare. The influence of public opinion was discussed in many chapters in Wasserman, but chapter 9 examining Clinton’s health care reform focused specifically on the influence of public opinion on government. In this chapter, public opinion on the government creating some type of health care reform was generally positive, but because of the vagueness and private nature of how the Clinton reform was created, most of the public was left unsure and confused by the health care reform. This made it easier for interest groups to come in and dominate the discussion of ...view middle of the document...

I feel this especially occurs with the populations who are in need of social services. Lack of resources means that marginalized populations will be less likely to have access to news on current bill proposals and less opportunities and resources to mobilize for their needs. Public opinion effects government policy through action and inaction, and through knowledge and ignorance, so understanding the opinions the general population holds as well as the importance of those opinions to the public is vital to researching its effects on social welfare policy in America.
Finally, the last concept I would use to begin a plan of research on social welfare perspectives is Wasserman’s concept of media framing. Wasserman discusses this concept in chapter six regarding how the media framed Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton during the 2008 campaign. Although framing candidates allowed them to be viewed in a simplified and interesting way, it also limited the information that was presented to the public on the candidates because the framing focused on only one aspect of Palin and Clinton, namely their gender (Wasserman 2011, p. 67). This idea of media framing in relation to elections made me curious whether this framing and stereotyping could affect perceptions on other government issues such as social welfare policy.
I would use the concept of media framing to further guide my research on social welfare perceptions...

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