Race in America 2019
Public has negative views of the country’s racial progress
More than 150 years after the 13th Amendment abolished slavery in the United States, most U.S. adults say the legacy of slavery continues to have an impact on the position of black people in American society today. More than four-in-ten say the country hasn’t made enough progress toward racial equality, and there is some skepticism, particularly among blacks, that black people will ever have equal rights with whites, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.
Opinions about the current state of race relations – and President Donald Trump’s handling of the issue – are also negative. About six-in-ten Americans (58 percent) say race relations in the U.S. are bad, and of those, few see them improving. Some 56 percent think the president has made race relations worse; just 15 percent say he has improved race relations and another 13 percent say he has tried but failed to make progress on this issue. In addition, roughly two-thirds say it’s become more common for people to express racist views since Trump became president.
Blacks are particularly gloomy about the country’s racial progress. More than eight-in-ten black adults say the legacy of slavery affects the position of black people in America today, including 59 percent who say it affects it a great deal. About eight-in-ten blacks (78 percent) say the country hasn’t gone far enough when it comes to giving black people equal rights with whites; fully half say it’s unlikely that the country will eventually achieve racial equality.
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