January 13, 2010

Sure Racism Is So Over

Yup, it's entirely not a factor in politics or social outcomes.

[/choking sarcasm] And let us not forget that those are the numbers who were willing to tell a pollster their socially unacceptable thoughts on the matter.


Greg Laden said...

These numbers are actually a little surprising.

Stephanie Zvan said...

Surprising in what way?

Anonymous said...

Steps have been made, but the fact that there's even a graph to look at shows how far we have to go.

Greg Laden said...

I guess I'm not surprised if this is what people say what they would feel/think. It is not, in my estimation, a graph of what people would actually feel/think.

Anonymous said...

When my (white) niece was going to get married several years back, I first heard about it from my mother (her granmother). My mother called me to tell me.

Mom: "Did you hear that K is getting married?"

Me: "Really?"

Mom: "Yes..... To a black man."

Me: "Really?"

Mom: "Yes. An old black man, much older than her."

Me: "Really?"

Mom: "Yes. And he's a musician."

Me: "Really?"

Mom: "Yes. He's a blues musician. An old black blues musician"

Me: "K is marrying BB King???? COOL!!!!"

Mom: "Really"

I remembered this conversation a few months ago when I was hanging around with the old musician black guy to whom my niece has bee happily married for several years, and he was telling me about his last tour.

"Yea, I've playing with BB King for the last few months"

"Really????? Cool!!!"

critter said...

Father's comment on my husband (& sister's): "He's white & he don't smoke.

Raleigh Flowers said...

I remember a discussion one night where a friend of mine was discussing way racism is still alive, well, and pervasive. He said next time you are in line at a McDonald's, or any other retail establishment. Watch the lines. See how those waiting on you will almost always acknowledge the white person before the black one. Even if they know the black person was in line first. And you know what he was right back in 1967 and I believe he is still right today although not as much as it was then.

Comrade Morlock said...

Who besides Bill Bennett has said racism is over? (Actually, I think I've heard that 10% of the population says that, but I don't have time to google now, so I'll stick with the internet standard of unsubstantiated opinions.)

And have there been any studies on whether people won't tell socially unacceptable thoughts to pollsters? The Bradley Effect has been pretty thoroughly debunked.

Also, "socially unacceptable" says a lot about the culture's values.

Anonymous, there is a lot of prejudice against musicians. Just be glad he's not a drummer.

Anonymous said...

Am I missing something or doesn't this data suggest whites are the least racist of all groups.

Jason Thibeault said...

Anonymous -- yes, you're missing something, in that you're completely misreading the graph. The blue headers are what race people are being told someone is about to marry. The graphs below those headers show the reaction of each race questioned. That bottom graph shows that blacks and hispanics have the lowest negative reaction of all the tested, when faced with the news that the family member is to marry a white person. Whites have the highest negative reaction in all three questions.

(There's no point in asking the reaction of a white person in their family member marrying a white person -- the assumption is that they would at least 99% agree.)

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, there is a lot of prejudice against musicians. Just be glad he's not a drummer.

Very funny. Because he is.

Stephanie Zvan said...

Will, sorry to take so long to get back to you on the Bradley effect. While what happened with the Bradley polling was likely the combination of a number of factors, this is a well-known effect in social science research. Wikipedia's article on it is actually a pretty good overview.


Stephanie Zvan said...

Oh, and Will, while being "over" is a slight bit of hyperbole, there are plenty of people who talk as though racism is a problem of the past, ended with segregation. It's progress that they feel this way (to the extent they do and aren't using the statement as a tool in an argument, but I may spend too much time arguing), but it's also a question of what they see and hear in their own lives versus the complexity of the world beyond that.

The most recent place I've been running into is in the race-IQ discussion, where it gets dismissed as a factor both, I think, because it's convenient to do so for argument's sake and because the less blatant forms are harder to quantify.