3.19.20 Are Americans Softening on Immigration?

Are Americans Softening on Immigration? 

The United States is in the midst of a two-decade-long shift in favor of immigration, and it is only accelerating under Trump, writes Noah Lanard for Mother Jones. In the article, Lanard explores the recent history of immigration politics and changing partisan viewpoints. Lanard argues that the country has been undergoing a shift in attitude on immigration over the last 20 years. “Anti-immigrant sentiment has fallen even further as the president’s rhetoric about immigrants alienates large swaths of the public,” Lanard says. Last year, nearly two-thirds of respondents, including 67 percent of independents, told the Public Religion Research Institute that it would be mostly a positive thing for the United States to become a majority-nonwhite country by 2045, Lanard writes, citing PRRI data. Lanard further cites PRRI CEO Robert P. Jones, who says “It’s kind of remarkable, really. Usually, we see some movement”—particularly when there’s a big bully pulpit, scaring an entire political party toward a more negative anti-immigrant stance.” 
New Zealand’s Terrorist Attack Linked to White Supremacy

A recent story in SF Gate examines how Fox News host Tucker Carlson responded to the recent terrorist attack in New Zealand that killed over 50 Muslims. Before the attack, the shooter mentioned President Donald Trump and other prominent conservatives in an online manifesto. In an on-air monologue, Carlson insisted the attack had “nothing to do with the United States,” writes Ellen Cranley. Cranley cites PRRI data from 2018 American Values Survey that shows that 54 percent of Americans believe that Trump has encouraged white supremacist groups. 
Catholic Parents Face Tough Decisions in Wake of Sexual-Abuse Scandal

“As it has been for decades, the Catholic Church is in the midst of a crisis, one whose long reach has traumatized thousands and left one of the world’s oldest institutions struggling to find a way forward,” writes Julie Beck and Ashley Fetters in The AtlanticOn one hand, Catholic parents enjoy the spiritual nourishment that comes from immersing children in the Church, yet at the same time, parents are extremely concerned for their children’s safety in light of revelations about priests. There have been a number of Catholics leaving the church and while the reasons are considered to be nuanced, the piece argues that the sex-abuse scandal could play a role. The authors write, “While it’s unclear whether the abuse crisis is the main reason Catholics are leaving the Church, a 2016 Public Religion Research Institute report found that religiously unaffiliated people who were raised Catholic were more likely than those raised in any other religious tradition to characterize their departure as a direct result of “negative religious treatment of gay and lesbian people” and/or “the clergy sexual-abuse scandal.”
LGBT Protections Seeing Widespread Support

PRRI’s most recent survey data was used by The Gay Timesto show how Americans have come around to LGBT issues. “The Equality Act aims to give protections to people based on their sexual or gender identity in the fields of housing and employment,” Matt Moore writes. “This means that it would be illegal to evict or fire someone because of their sexual or gender identity.” According to PRRI data, 69 percent of Americans support LGBT nondiscrimination protections, including 60 percent of Muslims and 59 percent of Orthodox Christians.