Old White Men

“3 in 10 Americans Admit to Race Bias”-that’s the hyped headline on the Washington Post story on a new poll that looks at how racial prejudice might affect the election outcome. But it turns out to be a little more complicated than the Post story lets on. Here’s how Jon Cohen and Jennifer Agiesta describe the findings:

More than six in 10 African Americans now rate race relations as “not so good” or “poor,” while 53 percent of whites hold more positive views. Opinions are also divided along racial lines, though less so, on whether blacks face discrimination.There is more similarity on feelings of personal racial prejudice: Thirty percent of whites and 34 percent of blacks admit such sentiments.

As in most polls on this issue, blacks are somewhat more likely to hold prejudiced views than whites, as I’ve written about this at length here. But the actual poll data shows an even bigger gap between whites and blacks when the question is not about feelings of racial prejudice but “some racist feelings.” Here, there’s a pretty sizable gap and 40 percent of blacks (and 32 percent of whites) admit to such feelings.

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Old White Men

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