Matching Items (32)
- All Subjects: Politics
- Creators: School of Politics and Global Studies
- Member of: Barrett, The Honors College Thesis/Creative Project Collection
- Resource Type: Text
- Status: Published
Although smaller and more local elections could have implications more dramatic to an individual than larger district-, state-, and nation-wide elections do, very few citizens vote in them. Moreover, citizens are limited in procuring further information on candidates, issues, and the overall election when there are fewer sources of such information across various mediums. While existing literature on political communication and voter participation does not yet extend far enough to sufficiently address the most local aspects of media effects on elections, the political science field’s dominating frameworks would suggest that an increase in news media, social media, and ground mobilization tactics would increase civic engagement and voter participation. My research, which focuses on hyperlocal elections, both supports andrefutes certain elements of that suggestion. Based on surveys of potential voters in a university’s student government election and a school board election, interviews with two student government presidential candidates, and an analysis of social media engagement, my research compares three mass media platforms and two elections to characterize the effects of media on hyperlocal elections—that certain tactics have drastically different results on different populations. My research expands the body of media and politics knowledge to include hyperlocal elections, suggesting that civic engagement on the local levels require increased further study.
This thesis explores a method of how political information could be distributed to the public and asks the question, what is the best way to provide voters with all of the information they need to cast an informed vote? It involved the creation of a website, www.azleglive.info, which republishes state legislative data in interactive and visually condensed formats and asked users to compare it to the existing Arizona State Legislature website on the metrics of depth of information, usability, and clarity. It also asked what resources users would utilize in order to cast a vote in the next election. Ultimately, the majority of users determined that the new website added needed usability and clarity to available legislative information, but that both websites would be useful when voting. In conclusion, the responsibility of disseminating useful information to voters is most likely to be effective when distributed among a variety of sources.
This thesis examines how the wording of proposed government policies can affect the level of public support that a given policy generates. By surveying 158 Phoenix residents, I tested the differing degrees of support that voters would have for a proposed city ordinance, which would stop Homeowners' Associations from restricting the use of native desert plants in residential landscaping. The ordinance was framed in the survey as a self-governance issue or a water conservation issue. I found that the message frames had little effect on the overall level of support for the ordinance, since most residents had moderate support for the policy. However, participants who were either residents of Homeowners' Associations that did not have native plant restrictions, or native residents of Arizona, demonstrated greater levels of support for the self-determination frame of the proposed ordinance. These findings have implications for policy makers who use targeted messages to establish pro-environmental policies at the local level.
We were interested in whether or not certain demographics, such as gender, age, education level, and academic major, would affect an individual's political awareness. In particular, we hypothesized that Political Science majors would have a higher level of political awareness than Non-Political Science majors. In an in-person survey, we asked participants on the Arizona State University, Tempe campus a series of nine questions measuring government structure and procedure, current politics, and policy issues. Our findings concluded that, within our sample: 1) on average, Political Science majors outperformed Non-Political Science majors 2) education level appears to be positively associated with political awareness 3) like education, age appears to be positively associated with political awareness, however, there seemed to be a peak at 21 years of age 4) males outperformed females, as suggested by research studying the gender gap in political knowledge. Because our sample population was not randomly selected, and this report focuses on descriptive statistics, we cannot generalize or comment on our findings' statistical significance. However, many of our findings are supported by current research and, with further specification, may be of interest to university officials who seek to measure the political knowledge and awareness of various demographic groups on campus.
An analysis of recent historical trends demonstrates that, while a large part of the twentieth century was dominated by a secular movement away from faith-based governance and societal norms, there exists now in the twenty-first century a developing global movement on the part of a burgeoning, international religious community to again find and clarify a place for faith in the public square. While much of the current international conversation revolves around the more radical elements of this movement, there is a more dominant mainstream, rational desire that is currently being overlooked and ignored, as modern, secular nation-states now grapple to balance freedom of religion and expression with a perceived constitutional and legal mandate to remain secular and neutral. This thesis will provide a study of the Republic of Kosovo as an example of such a conflict between the secular state and religious communities, highlighting its shift towards secularism, observing the religious community in Kosovo advocating for religious freedoms and a presence in the public sphere, and analyzing case law and social theory surrounding recent confrontations between this community and Kosovo's government and legal structure at large. The conclusion of this investigation will establish Kosovo as a local case study with global application, arguing that a misunderstanding of secularism to mean the crowding out of religion from the public sphere is an unsustainable approach for modern governments to take, and prescribing a model for equal representation and civil society that provides religious communities with opportunities to translate their values into more normative societal language with broad application.
In Arizona's early history, Females garnered more independence than most other women in the United States because they were forced to build a completely new life in settlements with little to no infrastructure. Now, Arizona has achieved a level of equality that no other state has yet to achieve in regard to gender representation. Yet, we have yet to achieve total equity. This paper looks to analyze responses that female senators from the Arizona State Legislature gave while being interviewed by the author. With questions derived from previous research conducted on women in politics at the state and federal level, this paper will delve into the personal experiences of six female senators. Although their personal narratives differ, their stories seem to reflect a collective tie that unites the female members together, beyond party allegiance. Each of the responses given by the senators had some aspects that showed trends supporting the majority of the hypotheses. Moving forward, in order to achieve 50% equality, two more senators would need to be elected and replace male senators.
Recognition of sovereignty provides the means by which states have their independence and sovereignty formalized. In cases of secessionist conflict, the decision to grant or withhold recognition of a new state is forced upon the international system, unlike cases that deal with decolonization or internationally imposed partition. Recognition therefore provides a means by which members of the international system can curate the potential international membership from a set of new secessionist states. A central feature of this curatorial function is that it does not proceed evenly, multilaterally, or simultaneously across all cases. Instead, curation proceeds along hegemonic lines in a Gramscian sense: recognition is granted by great powers that lead particular hegemonic systems in an effort to expand their images of social order to new states. These fractures are expressed clearly in cases of split or contested recognition. The paper proceeds from a discussion of secession since the end of the Cold War, then assesses the input of contemporary literature, and ends with the suggestion of curation as a new means to understand the dynamics of international recognition.
This research looks at the state of Anglo-American political relations since 1980. By examining the political partnerships between Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, Margaret Thatcher and George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush and Tony Blair, Barack Obama and Gordon Brown, and Barack Obama and David Cameron, it explores if the so called ‘special relationship’ remains so special today in a world of growing political animosity and challenges. The thesis argues that the success of the ‘special relationship’ between the United States and United Kingdom has not been just due to similar political ideologies or goals, but also personal friendships which often overcame national interests or immediate personal political gain. Furthermore, it is often the periods of disagreement between these sets of leaders that helped strengthen the relationship between America and Britain, evidenced by episodes like the Falklands War, policy towards the Soviet Union, the invasion of Grenada, and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Ultimately, the thesis explores how current relations have deteriorated due to problems on both sides of the Atlantic under the Obama, Brown, and Cameron administrations, but the research concludes that the special relationship is, while damaged, alive and fixable.
There is a serious lack of local news in Arizona, the American Southwest, and the United States at-large. Arizonans are craving quality, factual, no-holds-barred journalism that is easy-to-read, and upfront. Quality, local news that covers the ins and outs of politics, culture, and community has an opportunity to not only enhance civic life, promote community healing, and expand knowledge made available to the general public (thus serving the communities it calls home), but to also generate revenue. Further, independent and center-right leaning voters in the state of Arizona — be reminded that independents make up the second largest voting bloc among Arizonans — are often crowded out in a media environment that consists of far-left nonprofit-funded news sites like the Arizona Mirror, formerly reputable papers that have bled readership as they veer further left like the Arizona Republic, and far-right online blogs that reach a very limited audience. The Western Tribune is an Arizona-based journalistic publication. This institution is dedicated to providing high-quality, well-sourced news and commentary on statewide, regional, national, and international current affairs through the lens of good government and free enterprise — as well as Southwestern values. We are a free institution that believes in free institutions. We cover stories that go uncovered because of the corporate media’s blind spots (and they’ve got many — they’re a result of news deserts and out-of-touch coastal attitudes) with the stable support of a robust institution dedicated to Truth-seeking behind them. Our storytellers are not just good writers. We seek to recruit and form critical thinkers with skills that span trades, disciplines, and educational backgrounds. We are building an institution committed to excellence.
History is written by the winners. The losers’ narrative ends with the downfall of their civilization. Right now, the winners writing and teaching American history are setting up the next generation for failure. Instead of honing in on the structural landmarks that made the United States a shining city upon a hill, as most victors that would look to perpetuate prosperity would do, many institutions of higher education in charge of teaching our history imbue shame and skepticism of our past into our curriculum. By focusing on the atrocities of American history from an out-of-context modern perspective, we are teaching our young adults that monumental institutions deserve to be torn down, not venerated or improved for modern times. In my research for the Center for American Institutions, I have discovered that the winners that have captured academia and American history subscribe to corrosive tenets rooted in postmodernism and subjective victimhood. Postmodern American historians believe objective truth and knowledge collected over the centuries should be held in radical skepticism because of its origins in a society formed in oppressive systems of hierarchies. After discarding much of our history because progress did not happen fast enough, contemporary American historians believe in constructing a culture that emphasizes an equitable, multiracial democracy rooted in intersectionality, an ideology which has its proponents looking to align itself on vertices of identity—both real and perceived— in search for victimhood and offense. After examining syllabi that displayed this ideology in an empirical study, I examine evidence of this ideology worming itself into history, before spilling off college campuses and into our daily lives. Amplified by social media algorithms, extremist factions on both sides of the political spectrum have been empowered by our academic institutions to abandon the pursuit of truth and our history to construct the culture as they see fit. The casualties in this war over history and culture are too numerous to count, but perhaps the most the most costly one is the Generation Z. By teaching a history that shames instead of empowers, our newest generation enters the political fray unprepared for reasonable civil discourse, interprets such discussions as personal attacks, and feeds the polarized dichotomy destroying our political culture. Beyond our politics, the teaching of history—along with factors like the decline of freedom to play and a concerted focus to aim children towards higher education among others— has resulted in a generation of fragile, anxious, and unprepared individuals that stand ready to be hoodwinked by life, instead of embracing it. My thesis seeks to not only present these problems to you, but to present a model of a solution, a way to tell our history from a winning perspective. My model syllabus strengthens debate, encourages participation in our discourse, and strives to equip students with the tools they need to thrive in America’s vibrant civic culture. America is a winning country and idea, one which deserves to be perpetuated for as long as possible: we should teach our young people to embody this idea and succeed rather than confuse them with a pessimistic portrayal.