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As the holiday season is in full swing, Americans are expected to gather around the dinner table soon, but not everyone is happy.
Disagreements over political and social issues are the driving forces behind the lack of enthusiasm, according to a national survey from Farleigh Dickinson University.
Seniors, those inclined to believe in conspiracy theories and supporters of former President Donald Trump are the most eager to see loved ones during the holidays, the poll found. Younger and more liberal people, however, are less inclined to meet.
Overall, most Americans – 79% in total – said they “can’t wait” to reconnect with family over the holidays. Fourteen percent said they felt âin conflictâ and only 4% said the prospect of seeing family filled them with âdreadâ. However, responses varied among groups when divided by their social and political beliefs about COVID-19 vaccinations, the 2020 presidential election, and other topics.
âPeople who know that vaccines work [and] that the election was not stolen are not happy with events where they might have to face people who do not accept reality, âsaid Dan Cassino, professor of government and politics at Fairleigh Dickinson and executive director of the survey. âPeople who have false beliefs about COVID and elections want to see everyone, but they might not realize that not everyone wants to see them. “
But politics isn’t the only factor – according to the poll, young Americans are “much more ambivalent” about seeing their families in general. Twenty-seven percent of people under 30 said they were either in conflict or feared seeing parents, compared to just 8% of people 65 and over.
The type of food that is placed on the Thanksgiving dinner table could also contribute to strong emotions. 30 percent of vegetarians or vegans said they are unsure of seeing family, according to the survey.