If it's in the News, it's in our Polls. Public opinion polling since 2003.


Tuesday, December 06, 2016

What America Thinks: America in Black and White

How does race influence perceptions of American society? We decided to find out what America thinks.

In many ways, black and white Americans do see things differently. For instance, just 43% of white voters think the U.S. economy is generally fair, compared to 56% of black voters. But while 60% of white voters think the economy is fair to black and Hispanic Americans, just 36% of black voters agree. However, black Americans are more optimistic about the future of the economy than white Americans are. These findings were taken before Election Day, though. It will be interesting to see if the election of Donald Trump changes these perceptions.

There are also very different views on the U.S. justice system. Forty-five percent (45%) of white voters think the U.S. system of justice is fair to most Americans, but just 19% of black voters agree. Only 26% of black voters think the justice system is fair to blacks, a view held by 45% of white voters.

In general, both white and black Americans hold equally pessimistic views about the state of race relations in the country today. But a whopping 73% of black Americans think they’re even worse in government and politics. Only 46% of white adults share that view.

Sixty-four percent (64%) of white Americans say they don’t think most Americans are inherently racist, but just 35% of black Americans agree.

For Rasmussen Reports, I’m Alex Boyer. Remember, if it’s in the news, it’s in our polls.