BOSTON, Feb. 4, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- As the nation recognizes Martin Luther King Day and African-American contributions to American society public opinion on race relations, opportunity, and discrimination is clearly divided by race, according to a new poll by the Emerson College Polling Society.
When asked are race relations getting better in the US? Thirty-four percent (34%) of respondents said yes, while 44% of people said no. Among African-Americans, 61% believe race relations are worsening as compared to 41% of Caucasians and 42% of Hispanics who hold the same view.
Americans appear to be generally split on whether or not minority groups and Caucasians are on an equal playing field. Twenty-seven percent (27%) believe non-Caucasians have more opportunities, thirty percent (30%) think they have fewer, thirty-two percent (32%) said they have the same amount, and seven-percent (7%) judged it dependent on other factors. African-Americans and Hispanics believe that minority groups have fewer opportunities ( 53% and 39% respectively) compared to twenty-seven percent (27%) of Caucasians.
When asked whether the American justice system is biased against minorities, further divisions according to race were revealed in the Emerson poll. Sixty-nine percent (69%) of African-Americans agreed the American judicial system is biased; 22% saying it was not. Among Caucasians, 28% of those polled believe the system is biased and 51% do not.
Americans are divided on the Supreme Court's recent decision to strike down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act, which sought to reduce voter discrimination by requiring jurisdictions with proposed changes to voting laws to seek approval of such changes by the federal government. Twenty-four percent (24%) approved the decision, 41% disapproved the decision, and 35% had no opinion. Interestingly, Caucasians disapproved of the decision (40%-22%) more than African-Americans (35%-48%).
Race is also at play in perceptions regarding the the Food Stamp Program - and whether this program fosters a culture of dependency or is a needed safety net for the downtrodden and unemployed. Caucasians are split with 33% to 31% viewing the Food Stamps as creating a culture of dependency. In sharp contrast, 41% of African Americans view the food stamp program as safety net, while 18% conclude it results in a culture of dependency.
About The Emerson College Polling Society
The ECPS survey was conducted January 29 to 31, with 958 registered voters and a 3.09% margin of error.
Emerson College Polling Society is a student organization at Emerson College dedicated to formulating, administering, and analyzing public opinion polls. The results and analysis of this release are the sole views of Emerson College Polling Society and do not reflect the views of Emerson College as a whole.
Full results available at www.theecps.com
Media Contact: Matthew Mariano
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SOURCE Emerson College Polling Society