Skube column in Times
features student reporting


A Los Angeles Times column written by School of Communications faculty member Michael Skube features a mention of reporting by students enrolled in his Investigative Reporting course this fall.

In the column, titled "We're Saved. You Lost. Now What?" Skube echoes myriad press reports during election week that show polling of voters indicates no other issue outranked moral values - not the economy, not Iraq, not terrorism - in the presidential election of 2004.

He writes, "On election day, I dispatched a class of journalism students at Elon University to voting stations in Alamance County, N.C., to do some polling of their own. The results - in a county half an hour's drive from liberal Chapel Hill and Durham - reflected voting patterns in many places: Bush by a bundle. But why?

"'I voted for Christianity,' one man told a student pollster. He is the human face to Samuel P. Huntington's incendiary argument that America's national identity rests on two pillars - a British concept of civil society and a full-blooded Christianity. Bush's supporters set out to reclaim that identity, none with greater commitment than evangelical Protestants and conservative Catholics (talk about strange bedfellows)."

Skube goes on to say that "politics is the art of compromise, but there always have been issues that one side or another declared nonnegotiable."

In conclustion, he writes, "We witness every day things that many Americans once thought inconceivable - in the workplace, in schools, in social life. They came about only because private belief gave way to social necessity. But there are beliefs firmly held, and then there are beliefs that many regard as sacred. Pollsters and the media assume that people care mostly about material well-being. That, after all, is what they care mostly about. The consequence is that they fail to see people as they really are. Or accept them on their own terms. For most Americans, life has both a material and a spiritual dimension. The one they will sacrifice, if they must. The other, never."



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Last Modified:  11/08/04
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