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NULab-Affiliated Researcher Alauna Safarpour Published on The Conversation for Research on Violent Protesting

At a time when support for political violence seems to be ramping up across the country, NULab-affiliated researcher Alauna Safarpour recently covered her work on the subject for The Conversation. Specifically, Safarpour found that higher-than-average support for violent protest against the government correlates with residence in former Confederate states.

Still, Safarpour stressed in her article that “Nowhere close to a majority of Americans are ready to take up arms to overthrow the government.”  The difference in support for violent protest between Confederate state residents and residents elsewhere is only between 2-3 percentage points, showing how even among the most politically extreme it remains low. Unfortunately, Safarpour also stressed that, as demonstrated by the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, even a small minority can cause plenty of damage.

In any case, this research highlights the importance of history and locality with regard to present political leanings. To Safarpour, times of upheaval should encourage those living through them to look back, not just forward.

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