Arizona (AZ) / Leonard Bruce

Massachusetts (MA) The United States is more polarized now than any other time in AMericna history. How plaroaidzed? Since the 2016 Election -cite this https://www.history.com/news/just-how-divided-are-americans-since-trumps-election. 14 causes of polarization:

1. The end of the Cold War. The West’s victory in the Cold War means that (with the possible exception of jihadi terrorism) there is no longer a global enemy to keep us united as we focus on a powerful and cohesive external threat.

2. The rise of identity-group politics. On both the Left and the Right, the main conceptual frameworks have largely shifted in focus from unifying values to group identities. As Amy Chua puts it in Political Tribes (2018): “The Left believes that right-wing tribalism—bigotry, racism—is tearing the country apart. The Right believes that left-wing tribalism—identity politics, political correctness—is tearing the country apart. They are both right.” (Never mind here the possibly problematic usage of the terms “tribe” and “tribal.”)

3. Growing religious diversity. Current trends in American religion reflect as well as contribute to political polarization. One trend is growing secularization, including a declining share of Americans who are Christians, less public confidence in organized religion, and rising numbers of religiously unaffiliated Americans. One consequence is an increasingly open contestation of Christianity’s once-dominant role in American public and political culture. But another trend is the continuing, and in some respects intensifying, robustness of religious faith and practice in many parts of the society. This growing religious divide helps to explain the rise of several of the most polarizing social issues in our politics, such as gay marriage and abortion. It also contributes to polarizing the two political parties overall, as religious belief becomes an increasingly important predictor of party affiliation. For example, among Democrats and Democratic-leaning U.S. adults, religiously unaffiliated voters (the “nones”) are now more numerous than Catholics, evangelical Protestants, mainline Protestants, or members of historically black Protestant traditions, whereas socially and theologically conservative Christians today are overwhelmingly Republican.

4. Growing racial and ethnic diversity. In the long run, increased racial and ethnic diversity is likely a strength. But in the short run—which means now—it contributes to a decline in social trust (the belief that we can understand and count on one another) and a rise in social and political conflict.

5. The passing of the Greatest Generation. We don’t call them the greatest for no reason. Their generational values, forged in the trials of the Great Depression and World War II—including a willingness to sacrifice for country, concern for the general welfare, a mature character structure, and adherence to a shared civic faith—reduced social and political polarization. Thus, note:

I didn’t vote for him but he’s my President, and I hope he does a good job.
—John Wayne (b. 1907) on the election of John F. Kennedy in 1960

I hope he fails.
—Rush Limbaugh (b. 1951) on the election of Barack Obama in 2008

6. Geographical sorting. Americans today are increasingly living in politically like-minded communities. Living only or mainly with like-minded neighbors makes us both more extreme and more certain in our political beliefs. As Bill Bishop and Robert Cushing put it in The Big Sort (2008): “Mixed company moderates; like-minded company polarizes. Heterogeneous communities restrain group excesses; homogeneous communities march toward the extremes.”

Percent of U.S. voters living in counties in which a presidential candidate won by a “landslide” margin of 20 percent or more of the vote:
1976: 25
2016: 60

7. Political party sorting. Once upon a time, there were such creatures as liberal Republicans and conservative Democrats. No longer. The parties have sorted philosophically such that today almost all liberals are Democrats and all conservatives are Republicans. One main result is that the partisan gap between the parties is wide and getting wider.

Across 10 measures that Pew Research Center has tracked on the same surveys since 1994, the average partisan gap has increased from 15 percentage points to 36 points.
—Pew Research Center, 2017

8. New rules for Congress. The weakening and in some cases elimination of “regular order”—defined broadly as the rules, customs, and precedents intended to promote orderly and deliberative policymaking—as well as the erosion of traditions such as Senatorial courtesy and social fraternization across party lines—have contributed dramatically to less trust and more animosity in the Congress, thus increasing polarization.

It’s hard to exaggerate how much House Republicans and Democrats dislike each other these days.
—Juliet Eilperin, Fight Club Politics (2006)

9. New rules for political parties. Many reforms in how we nominate, elect, and guide our political leaders—shifting the power of nomination from delegates to primaries, dismantling political machines, replacing closed-door politics with televised politics, and shrinking the influence of career politicians—aimed to democratize the system. But these changes also replaced the “middle men” who helped keep the system together with a political free-for-all in which the loudest and most extreme voices are heard above all others.

As these intermediaries’ influence fades, politicians, activists, and voters all become more individualistic and unaccountable. The system atomizes. Chaos becomes the new normal both in campaigns and in the government itself.
—Jonathan Rauch, “How American Politics Went Insane,” 2016

10. New political donors. In earlier eras, money in American politics tended to focus on candidates and parties, while money from today’s super-rich donors tends to focus on ideas and ideology—a shift that also tends to advance polarization.

11. New political districtsWidespread gerrymandering—defined as manipulating district boundaries for political advantage—contributes significantly to polarization, most obviously by making candidates in gerrymandered districts worry more about being “primaried” by a more extreme member of their own party than about losing the general election.

12. The spread of media ghettoes. The main features of the old analog media—including editing, fact-checking, professionalization, and the privileging of institutions over individuals—served as a credentialing system for American political expression. The distinguishing feature of the new digital media—the fact that anyone can publish anything that gains views and clicks—is replacing that old system with a non-system that is atomized and largely leaderless. One result made possible by this change is that Americans can now live in media ghettoes. If I wish, I can live all day every day encountering in my media travels only those views with which I already agree. Living in a media ghetto means less that my views are shaped and improved, much less challenged, than that they are hardened and made more extreme; what might’ve been analysis weakens into partisan talking points dispensed by identity-group leaders; moreover, because I’m exposed only to the most cartoonish, exaggerated versions of my opponents’ views, I come to believe that those views are so unhinged and irrational as to be dangerous. More broadly, the new media resemble and reinforce the new politics, such that the most reliable way to succeed in either domain is to be the most noisesome, outrageous, and polarizing.

13. The decline of journalistic responsibility. The dismantling of the old media has been accompanied by, and has probably helped cause, a decline in journalistic standards. These losses to society include journalists who’ll accept poor quality in pursuit of volume and repetition as well as the blurring and even erasure of boundaries between news and opinion, facts and non-facts, and journalism and entertainment. These losses feed polarization.


hat have we learned so far from this survey of polarization causes?  I’d say, four things. I’d also say, not enough to get to the heart of the matter.

For starters, we could probably make the list longer. For example, we could plausibly argue that rising income equality should be added (though in my view the evidence on this one is ambiguous). Second, we can see that some of these causes are ones we either can’t do much about or wouldn’t want to even if we could. Third, few if any of these causes contain the quality of intentionality: None of them wake up each morning and say, “Let’s polarize!” Even those coming closest to reflecting the intention to polarize, such as gerrymandering, reflect other and more fundamental intentions, such as winning elections, advancing a political agenda, or gaining clicks or viewers.

The fourth conclusion is the most important. None of these 13 causes directly perpetuate polarization. They are likely what analysts would call distal (ultimate) causes, but they are not proximate (immediate, direct) causes. They seem to have shaped an environment that incentivizes polarization, but they are not themselves the human words and deeds that polarize.

And so our bakers-dozen list ultimately doesn’t satisfy. We need a 14th cause, arguably the most important one. It’s certainly the most direct and immediate, the most proximate, cause of polarization.

14. The growing influence of certain ways of thinking about each other. These polarizing habits of mind and heart include:

  • Favoring binary (either/or) thinking.

  • Absolutizing one’s preferred values.

  • Viewing uncertainty as a mark of weakness or sin.

  • Indulging in motivated reasoning (always and only looking for evidence that supports your side).

  • Relying on deductive logic (believing that general premises justify specific conclusions).

  • Assuming that one’s opponents are motivated by bad faith.

  • Permitting the desire for approval from an in-group (“my side”) to guide one’s thinking.

  • Succumbing intellectually and spiritually to the desire to dominate others (what Saint Augustine called libido dominandi).

  • Declining for oppositional reasons to agree on basic facts and on the meaning of evidence.




Capital: Phoenix

State abbreviation/Postal code: Ariz./AZ

Governor: Doug Ducey, R (to Jan. 2019)

Senators: Jeff Flake, R (to Jan. 2019); John McCain, R (to Jan. 2023)

U.S. Representatives: 9

Secy. of State: Michele Reagan, R (to Jan. 2019)

Atty. General: Mark Brnovich, R (to Jan. 2019)

Treasurer: Jeff DeWit, R (to Jan. 2019)

Organized as territory: Feb. 24, 1863

Entered Union (rank): Feb. 14, 1912 (48)

Present constitution adopted: 1911

Motto: Ditat Deus (God enriches)

2010 resident census population (rank): 6,392,017 (16). Male: 3,175,823 (49.9%); Female:3,216,194 (50.1%). White: 4,667,121 (57.8%); Black: 259,008 (4.1%); American Indian: 296,529 (4.6%); Asian: 176,695 (2.8%);Other race: 761,716 (11.9%); Two or more races: 218,300 (3.4%); Hispanic/Latino: 1,895,149 (29.6%). 2010 population 18 and over: 4,763,003; 65 and over: 881,831; median age: 35.0.

Manufacturing has become Arizona's most important industry. Principal products include electrical, communications, and aeronautical items. The state produces over half of the country's copper. Agriculture is also important to the state's economy. Top commodities are cattle and calves, dairy products, and cotton.

Arizona history is rich in legends of America's Old West. It was here that the great Indian chiefs Geronimo and Cochise led their people against the frontiersmen. Tombstone, Ariz., was the site of the West's most famous shoot-out—the gunfight at the O.K. Corral. Today, Arizona has one of the largest Native American populations; more than 14 tribes are represented on 20 reservations.

  • It is said that the name Arizona is derived from the Native American word 'arizonac' which means 'place of the small spring'. 

  • Yuma, Arizona is the highest producer of winter vegetables, especially lettuce, in the US.

  • It is said that both the highest and lowest temperatures in the whole nation can be recorded on the same day in Arizona.

  • Arizona has more parks and national monuments than any other State. It also has more golf courses than Scotland.

  • State attractions include the Grand Canyon, the Petrified Forest, the Painted DesertHoover Dam, Lake Mead, Fort Apache, and the reconstructed London Bridge at Lake Havasu City.

  • The world’s largest solar telescope is located at Kitt Peak National Observatory in Sells.

  • Women in Arizona were granted the right to vote eight years before national suffrage.

  • Although Arizona is the sixth largest state in area, only about 17% of it is privately owned. The rest goes to public forest and park lands, state trust lands, and Native American reservations.

  • The Arizona Cardinals are the longest running continuous franchise in the NFL, dating back to 1898.

  • Arizona is the only state besides Hawaii that does not observe Daylight Savings time.

  • Next time you enjoy a refreshing margarita, thank Arizona. The country's first barrel of tequila came out of Nogales in 1936.

About one-quarter of the state[8] is made up of Indian reservations that serve as the home of 27 federally recognized Native American tribes, including the Navajo Nation, the largest in the state and the United States, with more than 300,000 citizens. Although federal law gave all Native Americans the right to vote in 1924, Arizona excluded those living on reservations in the state from voting until the state Supreme Court ruled in favor of Native American plaintiffs in Trujillo v. Garley(1948).[9][10]

The state government is Arizona's largest employer, while Banner Health is the state's largest private employer, with over 39,000 employees (2016). As of March 2016, the state's unemployment rate was 5.4%.[71]

The top employment sectors in Arizona are (August 2014, excludes agriculture)

In 1924, Congress had passed a law granting citizenship and suffrage to all Native Americans, some of whom had previously been excluded as members of tribes on reservations. Legal interpretations of Arizona's constitution prohibited Native Americans living on reservations from voting, classifying them as being under "guardianship."[10] This interpretation was overturned as being incorrect and unconstitutional in 1948 by the Arizona Supreme Court, following a suit by World War II Indian veterans Frank Harrison and Harry Austin, both of the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation. The landmark case is Harrison and Austin v. Laveen. After the men were refused the opportunity to register in Maricopa County, they filed suit against the registrar. The National Congress of American Indians, the Department of Justice, the Department of the Interior, and the American Civil Liberties Union all filed amicus curiae (friends of the court) briefs in the case. The State Supreme Court established the rights of Native Americans to vote in the state; at the time, they comprised about 11% of the population.[10] That year, a similar provision was overturned in New Mexico when challenged by another Indian veteran in court. These were the only two states that had continued to prohibit Native Americans from voting.[9][10]

Since the election of Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1952, the majority of state voters have favored Republicans in presidential elections. Arizona voted Republican in every presidential election from 1952 to 1992, with Richard Nixonand Ronald Reagan winning the state by particularly large margins. During this forty-year span, it was the only state not to be carried by a Democrat at least once.

Democrat Lyndon Johnson, in 1964, lost the state by less than 5,000 votes to Arizona Senator and native Barry Goldwater. (This was the most closely contested state in what was otherwise a landslide victory for Johnson that year.) Democrat Bill Clinton ended this streak in 1996, when he won Arizona by a little over two percentage points (Clinton had previously come within less than two percent of winning Arizona's electoral votes in 1992). Since then, the majority of the state has continued to support Republican presidential candidates by solid margins.

Since the late 20th century, the Republican Party has also dominated Arizona politics in general. The fast-growing Phoenix and Tucson suburbs became increasingly friendly to Republicans from the 1950s onward. During this time, many "Pinto Democrats," or conservative Democrats from rural areas, became increasingly willing to support Republicans at the state and national level. While the state normally supports Republicans at the federal level, Democrats are often competitive in statewide elections. Two of the last five governors have been Democrats. On March 4, 2008, Senator John McCain effectively clinched the Republican nomination for 2008, becoming the first presidential nominee from the state since Barry Goldwater in 1964.

Arizona politics are dominated by a longstanding rivalry between its two largest counties, Maricopa and Pima—home to Phoenix and Tucson, respectively. The two counties have almost 75 percent of the state's population and cast almost 80 percent of the state's vote. They also elect a substantial majority of the state legislature.

Maricopa County is home to almost 60 percent of the state's population, and most of the state's elected officials live there. It has voted Republican in every presidential election since 1948. This includes the 1964 run of native son Barry Goldwater; he would not have carried his home state without his 20,000-vote margin in Maricopa County. Similarly, while McCain won Arizona by eight percentage points in 2008, aided by his 130,000-vote margin in Maricopa County.

Arizona rejected a same-sex marriage ban in a referendum as part of the 2006 elections. Arizona was the first state in the nation to do so. Same-sex marriage was not recognized in Arizona, but this amendment would have denied any legal or financial benefits to unmarried homosexual or heterosexual couples.[82] In 2008, Arizona voters passed Proposition 102, an amendment to the state constitution to define marriage as a union of one man and one woman. It passed by a more narrow majority than similar votes in a number of other states.[83]

In 2010, Arizona passed SB 1070, called the toughest illegal immigration legislation in the nation. A fierce debate erupted between supporters and detractors of the law.[84]

The United States Supreme Court heard arguments March 18, 2013, regarding the validity of the Arizona law, which requires individuals to show documents proving U.S. citizenship in order to register to vote in national elections.[85]

On October 17, 2014, Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne announced that his office would no longer object to same-sex marriage, in response to a U.S. District Court Ruling on Arizona Proposition 102. On that day, each county's Clerk of the Superior Court began to issue same-sex marriage licenses, and Arizona became the 31st state to legalize same-sex marriage.




Since 2010, Digital Arizona Program has been awarded $6,358,179 in federal grants for Arizona's Broadband Initiative.

Another $71,464,944, accounting for 2.1% of all federal infrastructure grants, was awarded to broadband infrastructure projects in Arizona.

Since 2011, access to a wired connection of at least 10mbps has improved from 90.1% to 91.0% of Arizonans.

In total there are 149 internet providers in Arizona.

There are 891,000 people in Arizona without access to a wired connection capable of 25mbps download speeds.

There are 912,000 people in Arizona that have access to only one wired provider, leaving them no options to switch.

Another 429,000 people in Arizona don't have any wired internet providers available where they live.

93.8% of Arizonans have access to wireline service.

3.3% of Arizonans have access to fiber-optic service.

83.9% of Arizonans have access to cable service.

89.6% of Arizonans have access to DSL service.

98.9% of Arizonans have access to mobile broadband service.

90.5% of Arizonans have access to fixed wireless service.









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