Americans Are F-in Miserable and Just Want to Get Drunk, Poll Says

If you’re feeling down lately, you’re not alone. First came the coronavirus pandemic and months-long quarantine. Then came the death of George Floyd and the ensuing worldwide reckoning about race. The world is a shitty place to be right now, so it’s completely natural that you feel less than enthused about being alive. Need further proof? According to a new poll, Americans are the unhappiest they’ve been in 50 years.

That stunning assertion comes from the COVID Response Tracking Study, conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago in late May. It asked 2,279 people about their attitudes and behaviors and found that only 14 percent of Americans reported feeling “very happy,” a big drop from 2018, when 31 percent said they felt that way.

Another (perhaps less surprising) change: a whopping 50 percent of people feel isolated, up from 23 percent in 2018. (And the other 50 percent clearly aren’t following social distancing guidelines.) About twice as many Americans said they felt left out or lacked companionship compared with 2018 and people also reported feeling less satisfied with their relationships and social activities.

How are we coping with this historic national malaise? Well, we’re blowing up and wanting to getting drunk. Yup, Americans are more pissed off and seeking inebriation (always a good combination) now than they were after President John F. Kennedy’s assassination in 1963 and the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in 2001.

On the plus side? People are less likely to turn to smoking for comfort now and aren’t crying as much or feeling as dazed as they have in the past. (No mention of how much comfort eating we’re doing, though. Hello, quarantine 15.)

Let’s hope this is our rock bottom, in which case, it can only get better from here on out.

Cover Photo: Rainer Holz/Corbis/VCG (Getty Images)

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