Climate Action

Things Americans Believe

According to an opinion poll released by the Pew Research Center and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in 2014, only 50% of Americans believe climate change is mostly due to human activity. On the other hand, a Gallup Poll from the same year shows that only 36% of Americans believe global warming will pose a serious threat to their way of life during their lifetimes. 

So here are some other things Americans choose to believe… 

1.   Only 60% of Americans believe in evolution. Of those who believe in it, 32% think it is “due to natural processes such as natural selection” while 24% say that “a supreme being guided the evolution of living things for the purpose of creating humans and other life in the form it exists today.” 2.   More than half of Americans don’t trust the Big Bang theory. Very few Americans doubt that smoking causes cancer. But they express bigger doubts at concepts further from their own personal experiences and more in the past. 3.   Only 46% of Americans are confident that vaccines don’t cause autism. Meaning that more Americans than not question if vaccines are safe for their kids – cue the measles outbreak in Disney World. 4.  41% of Americans believe humans and dinosaurs coexisted. In reality the earliest ancestors of humans have only been on the planet for 6 million years, while the last dinosaurs died out 65 million years ago. 5.  26% of Americans believe they won their independence from a country OTHER than Great Britain. Other countries Americans believe we gained are independence from include France, China, Japan, Mexico, and Spain. 6.  Half of Americans believe in a conspiracy theory. These conspiracies range from the JFK assassination to government involvement in the 9/11 terrorist attacks to the creation of the recent financial crisis by a group of Wall Street Banks. Even more ridiculously, some Americans actually believe that the government is mandating a switch to compact florescent light bulbs because these bulbs make people obedient and easier to control. 7.  19% of Americans believe that humans will be able to control the weather within a few decades. Wouldn’t this be nice to solve all of our climate change problems? 8.   More than one forth of Americans believe the Sun revolves around the Earth. Even though Nicolaus Copernicus proved this to be incorrect in the 16th century. 9.   27% of Americans believe that winning the lottery is a good financial plan. When asked what is your “best chance to obtain half a million dollars or more in your lifetime,” 27% said, “win a lottery or sweepstakes,” while 47% said “save and invest a portion of your income.” 10.  45% of Americans believe in ghosts. More Americans believe in ghosts than believe that climate change is a serious threat. 11.  More than a third of Americans believe aliens exist and… 12.  79% of Americans think the US government has kept some secret information about UFOs. 13.  37% of Americans believe the FDA is intentionally withholding natural cures from the public because of pressure from drug companies.   Marisa Barley, Intern