ERIC Number: ED439204
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
Conflict and Convergence: Race, Public Opinion and Political Behavior in Massachusetts. The University of Massachusetts McCormack Institute Poll. An Occasional Paper.
Watanabe, Paul; Hardy-Fanta, Carol
The University of Massachusetts McCormack Institute Poll of attitudes and opinions related to the political, economic, and social life of Massachusetts was expanded in 1998 to include a larger sample of minority respondents than in previous years. In 1998, the sample included 127 African Americans, 114 Asian Americans, 107 Latinos, and 381 Whites. The rapidly changing racial and ethnic diversity of Massachusetts was regarded as a "good thing" by a large proportion of all groups. Minority group members were less likely than Whites to think that things were getting better for minorities, and they were more likely to agree that there was a long way to go before minorities (specifically African Americans) have the same chance in life White people have. Thirty-three percent of African Americans, thirty-one percent of Latinos, and twenty-five percent of Asian Americans reported that they had a personal experience with discrimination during the last 3 months. African Americans and Latinos considered crime the most important issue, with schools/education the second most important social issue. Asian Americans thought schools were the most important issue, as did Whites. A majority of all groups indicated support for affirmative action. Respondents differed dramatically when asked whether schools should teach only in English or in some cases in a language other than English. Sixty-one percent of Whites supported English only, but eighty-one percent of Latinos favored instruction in other languages as well. Among Asian Americans, responses were split fairly evenly. There was general agreement among all groups that standardized tests for high school graduates are desirable. Almost half of all Whites expressed a great deal of confidence in the public schools, but responses of other groups were less favorable. Other questions involved the role of government, confidence in institutions, political participation and citizenship, and partisan identification and ideology. An appendix contains the poll questionnaire. (Contains 17 graphs.) (SLD)
Descriptors: Affirmative Action, Attitudes, Beliefs, Bilingual Education, Economic Factors, Educational Quality, Elementary Secondary Education, Minority Groups, Politics, Public Opinion, Racial Relations, Social Problems
Institute for Asian American Studies, University of Massachusetts Boston, 100 Morrissey Boulevard, Boston, MA 02125-3393. Tel: 617-287-5650; Fax: 617-287-5656; e-mail: asian firstname.lastname@example.org.
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Massachusetts Univ., Boston. Inst. for Asian American Studies.
Identifiers - Location: Massachusetts