Poll: Are you living King's dream?
August 23rd, 2013
10:46 AM ET
9 years ago

Poll: Are you living King's dream?

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Washington (CNN) - Fifty years after Martin Luther King Jr. gave his historic "I have a dream" speech, half the country says "a lot more" needs to be done in order to reach racial equality, according to a new national poll.

And the survey, by Pew Research Center, indicates a wide partisan divide over progress towards racial equality.

Forty-nine percent of people questioned in the poll say that "a lot more" needs to be done to achieve King's dream, with just over three in ten saying "some more" needs to be done and 16% saying little or nothing needs to be accomplished.

There's also a racial divide, with nearly eight in ten black respondents but less than half of Hispanic and only 44% of white respondents saying "a lot more" needs to be done.

"Blacks are much more downbeat than whites about the pace of progress toward a color-blind society. They are also more likely to say that blacks are treated less fairly than whites by police, the courts, public schools and other key community institutions," says a release by Pew Research Center.

August 28 is the 50th anniversary of the "March on Washington" and King's historic address. Hundreds of thousands gathered in the nation's capital for the rally that became a key moment in the struggle for civil rights in the U.S.

The Pew Research Center poll was conducted August 1-11, with 2,231 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.

- CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

Filed under: Polls
soundoff (12 Responses)
  1. Data Driven

    The Dream, like perfection itself, will forever be elusive, because we are not perfect.

    But that's not a reason to quit trying to achieve it.

    August 23, 2013 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  2. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    I'm living the dream while the GOP is trying to make it out to be a nightmare.

    August 23, 2013 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  3. Sniffit

    "And the survey, by Pew Research Center, indicates a wide partisan divide over progress towards racial equality."

    You say that, but the page you linked to doesn't say that and you provide no data or percentage breakdown to support it. Did you just throw that in there to add fuel to the fire?

    August 23, 2013 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  4. much thunder..little rain

    the 88 yr old vet and the kid from oklahoma arent

    August 23, 2013 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  5. Rudy NYC

    I was in DC that day, but did not attend. The parents were too fearful of violence for the younger generation to attend. So, about a two dozen of us cooked out in auntie's backyard until they returned. Their return was memorable moment. There was so much shouting and excitement, followed by more of the same, well into the night.

    Fast forward 50 years. Things are a lot different now. Unfortunately, there is a generation or two who have no clue of what it took to get here, nor how long and dangerous the road actually is. Hopeuflly, the overtly racist reaction to he election of Barack Obama as POTUS will serve as a wakeup call to new generations freedom walkers and fighters.

    August 23, 2013 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  6. deathstalker

    The Dream will never be achieved with CNN constantly talking about race. They're obsessed! Shut up! Constantly dividing people into little poll groups. The corporate media makes me wanna puke!

    August 23, 2013 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  7. deathstalker

    CNN = State Media, they constantly divide Us so we won't look at the real criminals in DC!

    August 23, 2013 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  8. ED1

    Not since Obama took office it's worse for everyone except people who get Government handouts for doing nothing to help this Country go forward.

    Don't try and play the race card on this one because I am black and work everyday for a living not like many of my brothers who use the system to get something for doing nothing at working tax payers expense.

    August 23, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  9. Sniffit

    Since you're too lazy, CNN, and just like to make blanket statements, let me help. If you did past the first page that CNN links to, you'll see that 56% of GOPers think that "a lot" of progress has been made towards racial equality over the time period since King's speech. For Independents, it falls to 48% and for Dems it falls to 38%. Remarkable, eh? The people who are busy enacting Voter ID laws, gerrymandering districts with specific intent to dilute minority voting influence, shrinking early voting, shrinking voting hours, prohibiting polls being kept open in the event of an emergency like hugely long lines, changing voters registration rules to make registration drives nearly impossible, chatting up trying to manipulate the electoral college rules in their states, holding up signs of Obama as a witchdoctor, equating poverty and social assistance with being a minority, enacting "papers please" laws because they don't like brown immigrants, and loudly barking racist nonsense in the middle of their rants about how racist they aren't....THOSE are the people who believe the most progress has been made towards equality? Baffling. One might wonder whether there's something here, in that the very people who would like it least are the ones perceiving the most progress towards equality.

    August 23, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |

    @much thunder..little rain
    the 88 yr old vet and the kid from oklahoma arent
    Too many young African-Americans are dishonoring the work of Martin Luther King through their actions as illustrated above. If Martin Luther King were alive today, what would he have to say about the culture that so heavily influences African-American youth?

    August 23, 2013 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  11. Lynda/Minnesota

    I'm going to give this Republican leaning Pew poll a pass. It feeds into Republican talking point rebranding logic of hoping to get the African American community dissatisfied enough overall to join up with the GOP (and one assumes) put the past in the past. You know. Forget we spent 5 years railing against you.

    August 23, 2013 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  12. Wake up People!

    Rudy, I'm loving you today!!!!

    August 23, 2013 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |