A recent poll of black Americans revealed a reality that flies in the face of the narrative left-leaning politicians and activist media types have made their bread and butter. When the survey asked African Americans to identify the most critical issue facing their communities, the answers were mostly unsurprising. However, it is what they didn’t say that was most telling.
Pew Research conducted a study analyzing various attitudes in the black community about identity, politics, and other issues. From the report:
“When asked in an open-ended question to identify the most important issue in the community they live in, the top issue was violence or crime (17%). This includes Black Americans who listed specific issues such as drug activity, shootings, or theft; but also those who simply listed ‘violence’ or ‘crime’ as the most pressing issues in their communities. Another 11% of Black adults said economic issues such [as] homelessness, poverty and taxes were most important.”
Nothing too surprising there, right? But something is conspicuously absent from the top of the list: racism. This is not to say some didn’t identify racism as a serious factor. A measly 3% of respondents indicated racial bigotry was the top problem in their communities.
Wait a minute. Aren’t progressive politicians and members of the chattering class constantly lecturing Americans about how racism is making it impossible for black Americans to succeed? How many times do we hear these folks bloviate about how African Americans are bombarded with racism every day? So why aren’t blacks identifying racism as a top issue? These are questions the white progressive elites who hang Black Lives Matter flags in front of their houses might struggle to answer.
Also striking about the poll’s findings is that the issues black Americans are most concerned about are areas in which the left has failed to provide adequate solutions – especially crime and the economy, both of which have had a disproportionate impact on racial minorities. Far-left activists and politicians continued to push for defunding the police even as crime rates were skyrocketing nationwide. Black Americans made up the most significant percentage of the victims of violent crimes during the increase. Inflation and supply chain issues are having a devastating impact on African Americans and black business owners.
But none of this is new. Democrats routinely focus on racism as the primary bogeyman because it distracts from the fact that left-leaning politicians have enacted policies that have had a pernicious effect on predominantly black cities. Rather than looking for solutions, they simply blame the outcomes on racism and “evil” Republicans who revile melanated folks. In essence, racism has become a reliable scapegoat when Democrats need to deflect blame. However, there are signs this may be losing its efficacy.
A Wall Street Journal poll found that black voters favoring a Democratic candidate for Congress dropped by about 21 percentage points. Those who planned to back a Republican politician increased to 27% from 12% in November. It appears a growing number of African American voters have become fed up with disingenuous Democrats who talk a great game on the campaign trail but completely forget about them after taking office.
Of course, this isn’t to say black people are not at all concerned about racism. In fact, many might still cite bigotry as a concern. But the fact that they do not believe it is one of the most pressing problems they face puts the lie to the narrative progressives love to push. If Democrats continue relying on this strategy, they could see an even greater loss of black voters in the years to come.
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