Read: Survey on Race Relations in America
Results of a survey released by the National Bar Association shows that Americans, both Black and white, agree that race relations are better today than they were 50 years ago.
Despite that reality, most respondents believe race relations are worse now than 10 years ago.
“Our national conversation about race has been going on for a long time, and it’s encouraging to see signs of progress,” said Benjamin Crump, president of the National Bar Association. “However, 50 years of conversation is too long without seeing more movement and, to a certain extent, regression. This survey shows that clearly there remains work to be done.
The survey, conducted by Sachs Media Group, found that:
Both whites (76%) and Blacks (58%) agree that race relations today are better than they were 50 years ago – but feelings are less positive regarding the past decade, with only 47% of whites and 38% of Blacks saying race relations are better today than they were 10 years ago.
Blacks and whites express equal degrees of curiosity (17%) when interacting with strangers who are not members of their own racial group, but Blacks also feel caution, mistrust, fear and hatred at much higher rates in those circumstances.
While fewer than one-fourth of Americans believe the nation is close to achieving racial equality, older whites are the most optimistic (27% of those age 50-64 and 24% of those age 65 and older). Only one in five millennial Blacks (20%) has an optimistic view.
Less than one in five African-Americans believe the country is close to achieving racial equality. Less than one in four whites share the same sentiment.
Researchers also noted wide disagreement between races and among different age groups of each race about what the term “racism” means and what actions constitute being racist.
“These findings should concern all citizens and public officials who still see the need to build a greater sense of community after so many years of policy progress,” said Clarence Anthony, executive director of the National League of Cities, who joined the NBA to announce the survey’s findings. “There is significant work to be done – especially among young adults who don’t see positive change around them.”
The survey also found that members of both races feel discriminated against. When asked whether they had been discriminated against because of their race, 80 percent of Black respondents said either yes or they were not sure. Fifty-five percent of whites answered that way.
Click here for the full report.