June 25th, 2009
08:48 AM ET
14 years ago

Blacks in survey say race relations no better with Obama

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/06/25/obama.poll/art.chicago.afp.gi.jpg caption=" Obama's crowd in Chicago on Election Night, when fewer blacks thought race relations were a serious problem."](CNN) - African-Americans really like President Obama, but more and more feel that race relations have not gotten better since he took office, a new national poll found.

Ninety-six percent of African-Americans approve of how Obama is handling his presidency, according to a CNN/Essence Magazine/Opinion Research Corp. poll released Thursday.

During the 2008 election, 38 percent of blacks surveyed thought racial discrimination was a serious problem. In the new survey, 55 percent of blacks surveyed believed it was a serious problem, which is about the same level as it was in 2000.

The poll was conducted May 16-18, in telephone interviews with 505 African-Americans and 501 whites.

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Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (106 Responses)
  1. Dan Holiday

    Here is an idea. Stop basing your whole life and identity on being Black! That in itself creates the perception of racism and is racist as well. How about being an American? Ever thought of that. How about, when you go somewhere and see different people you don't think, "Well, I should go over there with the other black people." Why not see everyone as just other people? Why is everything black and white? And as for race relations, what more do you want? I don't get it. You have every opportunity as everyone else. It is not the fault of others that you do not take advantage of things. I am a white guy. I have a degree, yet I see blacks that have the same qualifications with better jobs and nicer stuff and so forth. Do I get mad at them because of that? No. They worked harder for what they have. They may have put in more time and money to get the batter things in life. It is my fault for not trying as hard as them. So you see, people get out of life what they put into it...not what they take from it. Stop being victims. Get over yourselves and be a part of society not part of the problem.

    June 25, 2009 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  2. Nomad

    Change you can believe in!!!!!!!!!!! I love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 25, 2009 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  3. David

    We live in "My way or the Highway" society, so there's not much you can do to satisfy everybody. Everybody wants to be pampered. We're just so spoiled. I don't believe it's because of race relation that we do not have strong families in our communities, is it?
    Of course, if we don't take care of our own family it's natural that we'll want to be accepted by everybody else. I'm not saying there's no racial discrimination. But you know what? There's racial discrimination everywhere, including in the black community. Stop this crying about racial discrimination and get back to school and work hard to make ourselves competitive. I'm one who would be discriminated against everywhere. The reality is, I could care less. All I ask for is the opportunity to go to school and a job to put food on my table.

    June 25, 2009 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  4. Dave the truthteller

    With the media and Dems constantly beating the race drum, no wonder. It's in the best interest for both to keep the divide. It makes for good ratings from race-oriented programming and it keeps a mad black voting block in the Dem's corner. The sad part is that most black people play along with it. I think most people just see each other as just plain...people. That is, until some idiot (usually a liberal "activist" brings up race. Libs are soooo predictable.....

    June 25, 2009 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  5. gt

    of course ,, this way they can blame everybody for there short comings... we are a nation of people who want to blame everyone else....people like bro jessie jackson...rev al shartopn and all the other enablers.....love the poor me game .....no news here....

    June 25, 2009 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  6. Reality

    What exactly was expected? Did they expect the Holy Grail to drop from the sky for thier own private sip? I think Obama and the rest of the country are slowly waking up to reality.

    June 25, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  7. barbara

    Not surprised. Were you? How would anyone, in their right mind, think that race relations would improve simply because a bi-racial man said they should? Please people grow a brain. Black america doesnt really want things to get better. why? because they have always been discriminated against and have no idea what life would be like if there no longer existed the "means" by which to progress in life. They are used to complaining whne they do not get their way. They are used to using their skin color as a way to obatin things that they are not really "entitled" to. They use their race as the ONLY means of obtaining and therefore do not want to "racism" to go away. White people do try very hard to "see" black america as equal and with the same opportunities in life that they have. Thye agree that race relations are no better now but they do not blame themselves but rather they blame the fact that black america isnt pulling its weight in trying to overcome the stigma of racism.

    June 25, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  8. The world is how you see it

    I see it differently- but thats just my opinion. If you look for hate you will find it. If you look for peace- you will find it. Just depends what you are looking for.

    June 25, 2009 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  9. Armando Ortiz

    I'm sorry, but what part of "change is slow" didn't they understand? (I'll leave the 'they' to be defined by whoever complains about nothing changing)

    Even *I* understand that government moves at a snail's pace and Obama even said the same in one of his speeches to the people.

    I mean, come on already – give the guy a break!

    He's done more for us in the first 100 days than Bush did in the eight years he was in office.

    I'd call that an even trade.

    June 25, 2009 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  10. Wayne

    Things won't improve while talk continues about punishing Whites for whatever hardships blacks suffered in the past. Many groups and races faced hardships, injustice and tragedies in their pasts. It's only the Blacks trying cash in on it.

    My Great Grandfather was from Tenn. He fought for the Union and wasn't welcome back to his home town after the Civil War. He gave up everything and moved to Texas. Who do we see about that? A lot of blood was shed over the issue of Slavery. That's enough!

    June 25, 2009 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  11. Dave

    I would have guessed as much. He can't make people change. But... he does offer another face, another look, that can't be had any other way. I think that kind of change is almost generational in speed.

    June 25, 2009 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  12. bert

    Poverty is our issue. Racist people wheather they are employers or government decision makers will always be able to throw rocks and hide their hands, so we have to work on the things we know will close the gap on the ablility for racist attitudes to persist. We have to close the gap on poverty. Globalization will help to ease the race situation over here because we will have to stick together in order to stay ahead of the curve. The decision makers in our racist government will have to realize that in order for us to grow we need to expand the circle of opportunity. We have to interupt the poverty cycle and plug the hole of wasted potential in our society. Form a steering committee and I will give you more great ideas that are very specific. God bless the masses of poor people in this ultra rich country. We need a blessing!

    June 25, 2009 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  13. HopefulMD

    Unfortunately, it will take time (as it does with all change). With Barack's election as President I believe another stigma will be removed and people will move closer to seeing each other by their character and NOT the color of their skin...

    June 25, 2009 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  14. Kevin

    The fact of the matter is this, black people just need to get over thinking that white people give a hoot about you. Live your lives to the fullest and succeed at what you do irrespective of race relations..integration isnt all that people that it was going to be, though segration wasnt the answer either. White and Black folks have a history of animosity toward one another way before the days of the middle passage from Africa to the Americas...it dates back to when White folk crawled out the caves of the caucus mountains mad at the world for their own savagery and mad at their estranged black mothers and fathers who they felt abandoned them.

    June 25, 2009 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  15. Peace

    President Obama is the president for all people. The person who carried out this survey, I am afraid to say he/she was totally wrong to do so.
    To my opinion the president should serve all people regardless the race the president identify with!

    June 25, 2009 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  16. sandy

    My God he's only been in office 5 months. It amazes me that people think this man can change things in such a short period of time. Things that have taken years to fester cannot be fixed in a short period of time. Give this man a break please. I listen to TV and am just amazed at how he is attacked from every side. I think the American people have to be realistic about a lot of things that are going on in this country and the world. Get behind our President please.

    June 25, 2009 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  17. Ellie, MD

    African Americans needs to STOP thinking President Obama is their "CURE ALL", he's NOT. President Obama is the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, he's the President for ALL people. Folks need to stop making excuses about NOT getting involved in our communities and volunteering a couple a days per week at a youth center or mentoring children in need.

    Everyone needs to STEP UP and do right by their families, their children, communities and school. 80% of African American parents are NOT involved in their children's school or after school activities. That's just shameful.

    June 25, 2009 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  18. Chaikou from germany and france

    This is supposed to be America. Where everyone has an opportunity to achieve a dream. What's wrong with you americans. In Europe things are not better, but a lilltle bit since Obama's election. But we (yes I'm black) that things would be much different than before. It's sad that the color of your skin still determines your character in the 21st century.

    June 25, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  19. dan in Tucson AZ

    Until the Blacks stop thinking that, there will be no change. They are the ones who keep racism an issue. Suck it up, repair your broken social infrastructure and in 2 generations, bingo no one will know color anymore.

    June 25, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  20. Uncle Eccoli

    Oh, please. They never will.

    June 25, 2009 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  21. pat c

    i think the pure hatred shown by republicans for our president has set this country back on it's heals as far as racial devide in this country. i am white but now i feel total disgust for the grand old party of rich white men myself. sarah palin started with the name calling and created the scene that is now a way of life with these mean spirited supposedly god loving and fearing people that call themselves republicans. i truly never see the GOP gaining power again. they have done to much to destroy their party and continue to bash president obama at every turn. most of america is sick of it and will support obama because of it.

    June 25, 2009 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  22. Marcus, Great Lakes IL

    Well well, my little Republican friends, my President or your "Messiah" (as you lovingly refer to him, your words not ours) does not walk on water within his race as you thought he did. In fact, beside you having little or no respect for him or his family, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad also condems him. Birds of a feather...

    June 25, 2009 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  23. girlymen love the GOP

    Being white myself,I hear the fear of no longer being the majority all around me,especially here in Texas where wasps have somehow managed to keep control of the State Government by gerrymandering the voting districts and scaring nonwhites from voting.

    June 25, 2009 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  24. Shari, NY

    I don't think you can expect something like this to change in five months.

    June 25, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  25. Obama promised

    World peace begins in 3...2...1...

    June 25, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
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