Student Scholar Symposium Abstracts and Posters

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 5-14-2015

Faculty Advisor(s)

Ann Gordon


22 percent of United States citizens believe that they can trust the government in Washington to do the right thing most of the time, and Congress has an 11 percent approval rate according to a Gallup Poll. These numbers statistically indicate that citizens do not believe that the individuals they elected to represent them are truly representing them and are advocating on their own behalf. Individuals do not believe congressmen and women have their best interest at hand and are simply trying to please party leaders so they can get reelected. Elected officials are often times wrapped up in scandals trying to hide their misdoings which creates a strong distrust among constituents. In recent news citizens have taken initiative to make the change they wish to see, as evidence such as the Occupy Movement, and the Ferguson Shooting. Each case was a examples of when individuals took matters into their own hands and became politically active due to their low trust in government to make a move. When individuals feel as though they do not trust the government do they get involved and take up issues for themselves, or do they just back and watch and become apathetic to these events and become a bystander to a corrupt government? This paper strives to find a correlation between the distrust individuals feel about Congress and the activism citizens take up when they feel as though their voice is not being heard.


Presented at the Spring 2015 Student Research Day at Chapman University.