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Northwestern University Race Study

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FOR RELEASE: October 17, 2006

RACE GENERALLY LESS IMPORTANT FOR
MINORITIES FARING WELL ECONOMICALLY

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Racial minorities who experience equal
opportunities and relatively higher economic status tend to place
less emphasis on racial group concerns in their evaluations of public
policies, according to a new Northwestern University study.

But despite the growth of the black middle class in the post-civil
rights era, that is not necessarily the case for African Americans,
according to the study.

“Because African Americans continue to experience higher rates of
discrimination, even when they do well economically, they are more
likely than Latinos and Asian Americans to identify with their racial
group,? said Dennis Chong, professor of political science.

“The Experiences and Effects of Economic Status Among Racial and
Ethnic Minorities,? by Chong and co-author Dukhong Kim, appeared in
the American Political Science Review, a journal of the American
Political Science Association.

Chong and Kim based their study on data from a national survey
conducted in 2001 by the Washington Post, Kaiser Family Foundation
and Harvard University. The survey over-sampled African American,
Latino and Asian American respondents to permit a detailed comparison
of the effects of economic status across groups.

“For individuals in all three groups, the effect of socioeconomic
status depends on the experiences accompanying that status,? Chong said.

African Americans report suffering the indignities of prejudice and
discrimination to a greater degree than do other minorities and are
more likely to regard their interests in racial terms and to evaluate
public policies from the perspective of their effect on group interests.

Still, once experiences with discrimination are taken into account,
all three minority groups respond similarly to changes in economic
status. Improvements in economic status tend to diminish racial
consciousness among those who experience little discrimination in
their daily lives. But better off individuals in all three groups who
frequently encounter discrimination continue to call for greater
attention to race in public affairs.

Nonetheless, compared to Latinos and Asian Americans, economically
secure African Americans were more likely to support government
efforts to achieve racial equality in education, employment, health
care and the administration of the law even when they had a favorable
assessment of their opportunities in society. These remaining
differences across racial and ethnic groups may be attributable in
part to the positive legacy of collective action among African
Americans and to the presence of institutions such as the media and
churches in the African American community that continue to promote
the importance of support for racial group interests.

“African Americans have a great legacy of collective action,? Chong
said. “Their awareness of achievements of the civil rights movement
reminds them of the benefits of group solidarity.?

The study highlights that the successful incorporation of a minority
group into American society is contingent not only on the actions of
group members but also the reception accorded that group by the
majority population. When society provides equal social and economic
opportunities to individuals, minorities have less incentive to feel
their individual prospects are bound up in the status of the group as
a whole.

Scholars have noted that the most recent immigrants to the United
States from Latin America and Asia may face more formidable barriers
to social acceptance than did previous generations of European
immigrants. The question is: Will racial identities among Latinos and
Asian Americans become less important as their economic status
improves or will they develop a stronger racial consciousness --
similar to African Americans -- in response to discrimination and
restrictions on their social mobility?

“The incorporation of immigrant groups in American society depends
greatly on the behavior of other people toward them,? Chong said. “It
is the barriers to economic advancement that play a major role in
sustaining racial and ethnic group consciousness.?

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27 Comments

Asians and Hispanics are likely to be less racially conscious than blacks for one main reason. They are on whole, more successful than blacks and therefore, less in need of excuses for failure. Also, they have not been as conditioned by the liberal media into believing that they are oppressed, so the self-pity is not as prevalent as it is in blacks. The hypersensitivity isn't there. However, some Hispanics are headed into the land of self-pity due to slanted media coverage of the immigration issue and Arab Muslims have become the new media darlings of self-pity because of media suggestions of discrimination against them . Actually though, I think a lot of people really do discriminate against Arab Muslims. I know I do. I guess that flying planes into our skyscrapers will get ya that. As stated in the article, blacks report suffering the indignities of prejudice and discrimination to a greater degree than these other groups. That's because they "perceive" that prejudice and discrimination is taking place more than those other groups perceive it to be taking place. Blacks are far more apt (than the other groups) to say that racism is the reason for events that may really be the result of everything from lack of initiative to bad judgement to simple bad luck. Blacks scream racism where none exists far more than any other group. Blacks have turned it into an art and a science. Why? Because it's a proven winner. It works, period. Nothing sends guilty white libs for the antacids and Xanax faster than being called racist by a black person. My dear sister is a guilty lib and the mere hint that a minority is upset with her sends her into a cold sweat and has her questioning whether she is a good, worthwhile person (I, of course, am different. It's a fascinating pathology..but I digress). And streetwise, saavy blacks sense that and use it to their advantage. The other groups either haven't figured it out or have no use for it. Perhaps the other groups are getting by on hard work and initiative and have no time for shenanigans and excuses that impede true problem solving. I mean....how can you even begin to solve your problems when it's always someone elses fault or when you perceive that everything is always out of your control? This entire post will be labeled by some as racist. Others will see lots of truth in it. I really don't care either way.

The results of this study are no surprise because blacks complain more than Asians or Latinos.

Wow maybe thats because their Idea of success doesn't include gold teeth and rap music! It includes hard work, not glamorizing demoralizing women and ,making drug dealers look cool. Just maybe because they are emphasizing school instead of pot smoking!

Mary,

where can I get contact information for the author(s) of this Northwestern University Race Study, as it seems to relate to what Chris Graham and I have been going through with Cingular Wireless, particularly as it relates to the SCENDIS Report?

MITCHELL COMMENT:

You should contact the public information office at Northwestern University. The university's contact information is on its website.

To Shecky Fuller, truer words were never spoken. You articulated your post perfectly and I have nothing to add to it. However, I do have one problem with your post. You used the term "guilty white libs". That is a term I have used for years now and have used it here on this blog. I have even trademarked it(if that is the correct term?), and you did not ask for my permission to use it! Only kidding, it is an appropriate term that unfortunately we have to use to describe some of our white brothers and sisters. Keep up the good fight and stay proud of your heritage.

Jerry, the whole point of this is that time doesn't necessairly make past events irrelevant. My grandfather who is still alive was born in 1906! He was the grandson of slaves. The events that took place during his life and that affected his and his grandparents lives is not irrelevant! Is the constitution irrelevent because it was signed soooo many years ago or does it have bearing on your life today? Why are we still celebrating July 4th if that was so long ago? All I'm asking for from people like you is a little not a lot but just a little understanding and some empathy. Not just for black people but for all people. I'm not asking you to be the "guilty white man" and feel bad about what your ancestors may or may not have done. But please just understand that this country was set up to ensure the success of the white majority and everyone will not be afforded the same opportunities. This doesn't mean that every white person is living the high life or that every minority person lives in the inner city and is on welfare. Things are not all or nothing. Some people think that you either experience racisim everday or not at all. That's not really reality. But how can you deny that as a white man in this country you are looked upon favorably. And the times that people like Mary say things that you don't agree with don't make them a racist, but a person who has had life and cultural experiences different from your own. That doesn't make them any less legitimate. I highly doubt that if Mary was such a hater of white people she would choose to work in an enviroment that I'm guessing employs plenty of white people. And even if you met 100 black people that you knew for certain hated white people with every fiber of their being please tell me how this would have such a negative effect on your life and livelyhood and personal relationships on a daily basis.And being called a cracker or whitey is not the same thing.(And Jerry I KNOW that you are intelligent enough to the reasons why) How many times have you gone to a job interview and been interviewed by a black person? Have you ever had a black classmate tell you that the only reason you got an A on your paper while she got a B was because of affirmative action? Have you ever been pulled over by and had a black police officer say to you "I was going to let you go but once I SAW you my mind was made up?" Or be questioned at the airport by a black police officer about the status of your passport and how exactly you were able to afford that particualr trip? (These may all seem pretty trivial to some people but they are MY experiences and not yours.) Or have people like me think that all white people belong to the KKK while living in Appalachia and marrying their first cousins in the middle of a Nascar race while saluting the Confederate flag. But it's alright for some white people to believe that my black culture encompasses nothing more than the thuged out gold teeth, pot smoking rappers that the media love to prominently portray. As Pete C Said on here. Instead of maybe thinking alot of us are more like the Cosby's or something. Or horror of all horrors JUST LIKE YOU. I grew up middle class with black,white, latino and asian people from different backgrounds, so I know a good mix of people. Now even more so because I live in Chicago, mind you not a racially segregated area either. But of all the people that I know only my white friends smoke pot. And these are married educated people and some with children. So please don't generalize. There are PLENTY of times that I say to myself that I can't stand white people, or black people or latino people or Asian people, but because I have been fortunate enough to get to really know many people I know that I can't paint an entire race with the same brush because someone pissed me off today. And it's just very sad that so many people are content to exist in their limited view of the world. And finally Jerry I would just like to know if you really and truly believe in your heart of hearts half the things you say or agree with? I am apt to believe that most people have a soul and an empathy for all people. But do you really agree with Jill Henrie that other races have IQ's of below 90? It's this type of insanity that is just so pointless. Why do people feel the need to add such idiotic drivel to an already complicated situation. And I hope I'm not wrong about you Jerry but something tells me that you just like to be on the fringe and antagonize a lttle bit and that you really know better. Would you really want people mentioning you in the same sentence as someone with let's be frank, who sounds like they are either the dumbest person alive or been living in a cave somewhere. I can't take someone who believes something so ludicrous seriously. Now I can't brag on myself as I am still in school but one of my best friends(who is black) graduated from U of I with a degree in Chemistry, another friend just graduated from law school while another is applying to medical school. IQ's below 90? I think not. But most importantly we all need to realize that we played no part in the people that we are here. It was simply luck of the draw Jerry that you came to be a white man in America as opposed to say a poor woman in Thailand forced into prostitution. You live in a country that while at war with another doesn't have to live the devestation of that war. I am thankful everyday that I am who I am, but I also realize that not everyone is as fortunate. I feel lucky. But I know that my circumstances could have been much much different.
However F!$*ed up you feel your life may be now, just know it could always be worse. But if your living your life without empathy for others, then that doesn't really matter to you either.

I'm ashamed that Shecky Fuller lives in the same town that I do.

Shecky, jerry and pete

typical white male bull...
their whole attitude is the reason why white people will always be viewed as racist and quite frankly out of touch with human nature. barbaric animals. then what is even more insulting all the so called white people who profess such a profound belief in god but sound like terrorists when the speak.

amerikkka is a racist country true and blue. the same struggles my ancestors fought i have to continue to fight because white people still believe that they are superior and contiue to discriminate against blacks people, especially, to keep amerikkka's racical legacy up and running.

i feel sorry for the cowrds who wrote those things because their whole race will be eliminated by 2050 anyway or mixed with plenty of africans, asians and latinos.

I'm not too surprised with the results of this study. Blacks are more likely to speak out against discrimination and work collectively as a group (for example, the Civil Rights movement). Just a note to Pete C, your post implies that all Blacks glamorize drug dealers and demoralize women. Asians don't have a lock on education and success. I know many successful, educated Blacks, Latinos, and Asians. You may want to expand your horizon a bit more before labeling entire groups of people.

A lot of these slavery threads (not this one) in which blacks cry that nothing is better for them make reference to Barack Obama. There is irony in this. Of course Barack Obama is the new media darling. The politically-correct Illinois Senator who wouldn't answer a tough question if his life depended on it is equally white and black. He completely downplays, or never mentions his white side, while completely overplaying his blackness. Why? We all know. Black is where the mileage is at. It's the same reason Halle Berry and Mariah Carey do it. Could you imagine someone playing their black side for an advantage 40 years ago? Who says things haven't gotten better for blacks?

It seems many caucasian are still living a life of denial when it come to racism. You have to experience a daily dose of bigotry to really understand what it is. When racism is a way of life,people do not know the different between right or wrong,or good and evil. How tragic this is.

Hold on..

To that utterly ignorant person who mentioned gold teeth and rap music as ideas of success for African Americans - get a grip. Ignorance is bliss, if the shoe fits, then lace that bad boy up!

In most instances, success has a different definition for everyone, check it: when I was coming up on the South Side down on the low end, a day without gunfire was a success; making it home from school without somebody trying to jam me for whatever reason, that was a success, too. Here's more of that success I have recieved as a grownup that some ignorant folks would say wouldn't apply for us black folks; serving my country earning every stripe on my sleeves in the military, and earning a bachelors degree while doing so, leaving a legacy for my kids and taking care of the business of being a productive member of society. Funny, I don't have any gold teeth, don't demoralize women, or think drug dealers are cool..but I do love rap music though. Oooooh, guilty as charged. Guess someone's going to lump me in with the rest of those riff raffs, I suppose...when some of those same folks couldn't get with me with the brightest candle on the day they won the lottery - on their best day and on my very worst day.

Foolish mortals - success is in the eye of the beholder. What applies to some will not apply to all.
Race will always play a part in perceptions of outsiders - acceptance will not be achieved without tolerance. We are NOT all the same. Think about it.

If you read the comments you can see that although a white person sees and hear a hundred examples of Blacks doing well, they will always point to some stereotype that white people help to perpetuate. Do Black youth who wear fake gold teeth look more ridiculous than White youth with a dozen safety pins in their ears and green and red hair? Of course not, but Black people do not equate the rebellious acts of White youth as being a norm. Oh my God, I see Barack Obama and Oprah Winfrey in the news almost everyday are they complaining about the race issues or are they blazing paths?

This is why we continue to fight for equal rights and fair treatment. The laws have been established for us but the Federal Courts are anti Civil rights all the attorneys I have spoken to on this matter say the same thing. The Federal Courts are conservative and they hate Civil rights cases. What is the rule of law if the average citizen can't get to a jury of his peers to get justice where will we find help? the Courts and the Judges are the only remedy we have. So call your state Senators and tell them you want fair treatment in the Federal Courts. Force companies like Cingular/AT&T Wireless to stop discriminating and retaliating against their minority employees. Ask for the unredacted SCENDIS report we all need to see it.

A Cingular manager gave a black employee a 1.4% raise when the average was about 3%, the manager told the black employee if he told anyone about the raise he would "hang him"!!!!


I hate to see it, but many whites just don’t get it. I grew up in the 60’s, was one of the first to leave my neighborhood to attend a private white high school in the 1970s. In all of my classes I was the only black guy. I worked hard and was very successful then and now. Yet, I can see the differences when I encounter whites who do not know me. Because I have many white friends, I am “legitimize? when I move into circles where I been introduced, but people may not know my face. Years ago, I was hosting a seminar for investment advisors and I was sitting among a group and someone said, that the group was waiting for the speaker. When I told him that I was the speaker, he just couldn’t believe it. During the presentation, there were interjections and in the Q & A portion some wanted to know about my background. I didn’t let it rattle me or break my rhythm. I have attended many of these kinds of forums and yet I have never seen a speaker needing to justify his background and expertise. It was successful that I did subsequent engagements. To me, I think that my color had something to do with it.

During my developmental years there were several times that I safety was in jeopardy because I dared to go to areas in Chicago in the 1970s. I knew that some white people just can’t deal with blacks whether they are successful or not. I think that black inferiority has been sold in the media for so long, that some whites might feel there is something wrong or inadequate with them if a black excels at something. Thing about it, in sports, there were some whites who thought that blacks would not make good athletes because of a lack of discipline. Today, that kind of thinking is totally ridiculous.

Finally, unlike Asian and Latinos, African Americans carry the history of not voluntarily coming to America. Also, they did not suffer through the Jim Crow laws. In the early 1970s I was denied admission to a story in River Forest after a basketball game against St. Luke’s. One of the white kids from the school offered to go in for me. I politely told him that I didn’t want to spend my money in the store. So, I waited for him and we returned to the gym. That was clearly not my imagination, or an excuse to do anything and then blame it on the system.

The people who denied me access are probably in their 50s or 60s today, so a great deal of the resentment is still prevalent today and those blacks who have experienced it, know it when they see and feel it. I hope that some of those bloggers who want to generalize about black people realize just how short-sighted they are. I always use the word some, which is much more appropriate than trying to group everybody together.

Wow! What an interesting post chain. When will whites in the U.S. take responsibility for what occurred on these shores with regard to black people? Have Latinos or Asians been forcefully taken from their homeland and made slaves for the profit of others? Where's the study about the affects of such on the psyche of both whites and blacks? And who determines what is broadcasted as entertainment? There are many evolved rappers who rap about the importance of love and unity among blacks and all people who you will never see on MTV. Why? The others are just trying to improve their economic status, like anyone else. If you believe that all blacks or even most are represented by what you see on MTV, then what does that say about you?

Perhaps it is the tone of the hateful comments on this page that speak to why black people identify with their own group - it is just as much for a sense of community as a sense of comfort.

I would also like to know where Shecky Fuller gets his facts about hispanics being more successful than blacks - sounds like conjecture to me.

Tina
When will blacks take responsibility for the downfall of the black family unit? Crime, drugs, teen pregnancies, and so it goes...can you really blame slavery for this? I think not but some will continue to use it as a crutch.

Ms. Young -- the comment is indeed subjective opinion on my part. In most quantified categories such as income and education, Hispanics do fall below blacks. However, people can draw their own "gut feeling" conclusions about who is passing who on the totem pole, and why. Regarding your other point...I see no one condemning remarks as "hateful" when whites are routinely skewered like shiskabob on this blog. If you want to classify my remarks as hateful...feel free...I don't care. Let's just call it both ways folks, OK??

Shecky Fuller hit the nail on the head. I think I said this last week on this blog? it must have got deleted? Funny, I thought this was America?

Tina - have you been taken from your homeland and made into slaves for the profit of others? I still don't get it...how is it that some blacks can thrive, yet others hold onto the excuse of slavery? Why should I (a white person) take responsibility for something that I (nor my ancestors) had anything to do with? A tired argument...

To Shecky Fuller, don't let the black bloggers on here silence you by calling you a racist. That bogus racism accusation is an old, weak argument said by people who are either not intelligent enough to debate an issue, or are losing the debate and throw around the racism accusation as a last ditch effort to win the debate.

To Ericka, I take offense to you calling me a "barbaric animal". I would think a racist insult would have been deleted from this blog, but I guess if you're black you get away with anything. BTW, with all the grammatical errors in your post you sound much more like a "barbaric animal" than I do. Also, I believe you tried to call me a coward?(I am not sure because the word is not spelled correctly) Well, I am just responding to all of the cowardly, racist posts that the black cowards on here have attacked my people with.

Wow Shecky and Jerry is it?...
Either you are dyed in the wool racists OR you are the more common American inexplicit racist...you both do great impressions of a Black-People-Expert. I remember people like you form Law School ya know, the kind of people who have that assured look of intellectual superiority in their face. The face is hiding their full inadequacy so they resort to PURE simplicity; made up statistics and sound bytes from the mainstream (which allots enough time for about 3% of what's going on in the real world)
Either way, why do you spend so much time on this blog? You obviously will die with the same uniformed/unread/learned (as in; somebody else gives me all I need to know cause Im too lazy to really get at the info myself) opinions about race I suppose you're relieving the stress of so many years of pent up racism. Thank God for anonymity huh?

R. David....cheap online psychoanalysis aside, tell me something about the ubiquitous black trait of labeling "racist" all those who tell them something they don't want to hear. Did you learn that in your imaginary law school? Naw..you couldn't have..it's just something blacks do. I think you are a racist. Are your feelings hurt now? See, it's so overused and misapplied...it means NOTHING. NOTHING.

To R David, no one tells me how to think. I form my own opinions from my life experiences and if those opinions offend you, too damn bad! Grow up and learn to take it if you are going to dish it out. That's why blacks on this blog attack me and Shecky and others, because you are too thin skinned and you are too conditioned to whites being afraid to speak their mind. So when a white person finally does speak the truth, you go into a state of shock and the tears start to flow.

The moderator has wrote a few stories recently about a kid possibly being wrongly accused of participating in a cowardly 5 on 1 beating. Did anyone catch what one of the other kids was quoted as saying? This other kid said his friends saw a white guy standing on the corner and talking on his cell phone when they punched him in the back of the head, forced him to the ground and kicked him in the face. Another black on white violent crime in our fair city. I'm telling you, whites are under such assault in this city from blacks that we may have to start arming ourselves for protection. This happened in supposedly tolerant, diverse Hyde Park. I guess you could chalk up Hyde Park as another place where whites cannot go.

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This page contains a single entry by Mary Mitchell published on October 17, 2006 7:51 PM.

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