ATLANTA (CBS46) – A vast majority of Americans say the nation is at its lowest point they can remember and see the future of the nation as a significant source of stress, a new survey from the American Psychological Association found.
According to the survey, entitled “Stress in America 2020,” 72 percent of Americans report “this is the lowest point in the nation’s history that they can remember,” which is significantly higher than the same time in 2019 and 2018 when only 56 percent agreed with the statement and 2017 when 59 percent said the same about the nation’s history.
The APA said in the wake of the George Floyd death, 55 percent of black Americans said discrimination is a significant source of stress, which was a double-digit increase from the beginning of May. Overall, 71 percent of Americans said police violence toward minorities is a significant source of stress, but 67 percent said the current movement against systemic racism and police brutality will lead to meaningful change.
The largest stressor in the APA survey remained COVID-19 and the government’s response to it. Almost 80 percent said the COVID-19 pandemic is a large source of stress. Nearly 67 percent of respondents said the government’s response to COVID-19 is stressing, with Democrats (73 percent) and Independents (68%) the largest political groups critical of the government’s response.
Seventy-seven percent said they found face masks and social distancing “to be reassuring,” with older adults leading this group. Overall, 63 percent of Americans said the thought of the U.S. reopening caused them stress, but 72 percent said they are confident they can protect themselves form the virus.