In our sharply divided partisan era, it is common for each side of the political spectrum to accuse the other of failing to understand reality. But a new survey conveniently proves that white Republicans are living in a fantasy world when it comes to race in America.
The latest Pew Research Center survey on racial attitudes in America is a treasury of examples of the ways in which black and white people see this country differently. You can probably guess how the responses differed on questions such as “Has America made the changes needed to give blacks equal rights with whites?” or “Black people are treated less fairly by the police in this country—true or false?”
One of the starkest contrasts, though, comes when you further isolate white Republican respondents:
And while about eight-in-ten (78%) white Democrats say the country needs to continue making changes to achieve racial equality between whites and blacks, just 36% of white Republicans agree; 54% of white Republicans believe the country has already made the changes necessary for blacks to have equal rights with whites.
Is there any way to empirically check the validity of this belief. Fortunately there is, right in this very same survey!!
The racial gap extends to household wealth – a measure where the gap has widened since the Great Recession. In 2013, the most recent year available, the median net worth of households headed by whites was roughly 13 times that of black households ($144,200 for whites compared with $11,200 for blacks).
Republicans, who are supposed to be the ones who understand money, are delusional about racial equality in American. The racial wealth gap proves it. The only way for them to wriggle out of this would be by resorting to an explanation that was purely racist. That doesn’t seem like something a white Republican would do.