Friday, October 26, 2007

Poll: Many Americans are Gullible

CNN is reporting that in a recent poll, one third of Americans believe in ghosts [1]. "The poll, conducted October 16-18, involved telephone interviews with 1,013 adults and had a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points." Unfortunately, CNN did not provide the survey for scrutiny.

This poll also found "Three in 10 have awakened sensing a strange presence in the room. For whatever it says about matrimony, singles are more likely than married people to say so." This experience is known as "Hag Phenomena" and is a hypnogogic hallucination often associated with sleep paralysis [2] that, although often terrifying, is harmless and natural. I do find it interesting that more people in this poll that reported this experience are single.

Also, this poll reports that 48% believe in ESP. In fact "Those who find credibility in ESP are more likely to be better educated and white -- 51 percent of college graduates compared to 37 percent with a high school diploma or less, about the same proportion by which white believers outnumber minorities." Why, oh why would more educated people be more likely to believe in ESP? I think this is simply wish fulfillment; certainly the evidence seems to debunk ESP as a natural or existing phenomenon [3]. In fact, the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research lab closed after 28 years of investigating ESP with no evidence of ESP existing [4].

This poll does support one conclusion: Many Americans are Gullible. Turn off the the 'Ghost Whisperer,' 'Medium' and "Phenomenon" TV shows and use your imagination more creatively to enjoy life rather than the pursuit of shadows.

-Safari Bob



No comments:

Post a Comment