Sixty-seven percent (67%) of voters are aware that, on average, black men receive stricter sentences than white men convicted of the same crime.
A ScottRasmussen.com national survey found that younger voters are more aware of this reality than their elders. Eighty-three percent (83%) of black voters are aware, but only 59% of white voters acknowledge it.
Just 51% of Republicans recognize this key fact. It is understood by 83% of Democrats and 62% of Independents (see question wording and crosstab results).
Other data from the survey showed that voters understand that our nation currently incarcerates more people than any other country in the world.
This national survey of 1,001 Registered Voters was conducted October 11-12, 2018 by ScottRasmussen.com and HarrisX, a leading research company specializing in online surveys (see Methodology). The Margin of Error is +/- 3.1 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.
My new book, The Sun is Still Rising: Politics Has Failed But America Will Not, describes how the culture leads our nation forward while the politicians lag behind. It’s the reason I’m optimistic about our future and believe our nation is moving to fuller equality. In fact, I am confident the culture is even powerful enough to fix our broken political system.
But my book also addresses the complexity of the culture we have inherited. Chapter 11 begins with the following passage:
In 1619, two contradictory strands of American history got their start in Jamestown, Virginia. One strand was noble, the other was shameful.
On July 30, the first representative government in the American colonies was established. The House of Burgesses met in the Jamestown Church “to establish one equal and uniform government over all Virginia.” Thus began America’s long and generally successful experiment with self-governance.
However, in a twist of fate worthy of a Greek tragedy, the first enslaved people arrived in the same town just a few weeks later. They were probably literate and Christian, having been abducted by Portuguese slave traders from what is now Angola. British pirates raided the Portuguese ship, took roughly two dozen captives as their prize, and sold them in Jamestown.
Thus began America’s great national sin, a sin that has haunted the nation for four centuries.
These two narratives—one positive and one negative—have competed and interacted to define America ever since. These dueling histories directly impact the way we perceive events today.
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Neither Scott Rasmussen nor ScottRasmussen.com has any relationship with Rasmussen Reports® (see About Us).