The poll finds all three issues are fairly divisive among the public at-large, with large shares seeing policy shift in a direction at odds with their views. A slim 52 percent majority supports the recent Supreme Court ruling legalizing gay marriage across the country while 44 percent oppose the decision. That is a narrower split in opinion than other surveys have found asking more general opinions on gay marriage.
The public divides more closely on the Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act with 45 percent in support and 42 percent in opposition. There is a similarly split opinion on the Confederate flag, with 46 percent in support of efforts to ban displaying the flag on government property and 44 percent opposed.
Discontent with the direction of social issues is rooted in the fact that those who oppose many of these specific issues are far more unhappy than the winners are happy about the Supreme Court and flag results. For those who support the gay marriage Court ruling, only 48 percent say they are comfortable with the direction on social issues. But for those who oppose the Court decision, 79 percent are uncomfortable with the direction.
Some core Democratic groups are finding a disconnect with the rapid change in social issues as well. Fifty-one percent of non-whites, a growing group of Democratic supporters, say they are uncomfortable with the pace of social change. Two-thirds of women also say they are uncomfortable, as are 50 percent of adults under age 30.