ERIC Number: ED166353
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978
Reference Count: 0
White Opposition to Busing in Los Angeles: Is Self Interest Rejuvenated?
Allen, H. M., Jr.; Sears, David O.
The conventional explanation for adult white opposition to busing for school desegregation emphasizes a rational, objective self interested component. Whites are seen as opposing busing because its costs far exceed its benefits. However, little of the social psychological literature supports this view. Studies by and large support the findings that rather than rational gain-loss calculations, symbolic racism and political conservatism are the main determinants of busing opposition. The literature has not adequately examined busing sentiment in a local setting on the eve of actual implementation. In a study of a sample of white adult residents randomly selected from the Los Angeles County area during December 1976, approximately 20 months prior to actual implementation of the Los Angeles desegregation plan, it was found that symbolic racism and political conservatism related substantially to busing opposition. However, a comparatively moderate, but nonetheless significant self interest effect, indexed by whether or not the respondent had children who might be concretely affected by the implementation of busing, also emerged. The implications of these findings suggest that further research is needed to isolate socialization attitudes from self-interest variables in understanding busing opposition. (Author/WI)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: California (Los Angeles)
Note: Paper prepared for presentation at the Symposium, "Desegregation Research: The Present and Future Directions," of the American Psychological Association Conference (Toronto, Ontario, August l978)