STUDY: Trump Supporters More Likely to Dehumanize Black People

RamsayBolton

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A new study suggests that Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and subsequent victory in 2016 had a polarizing effect on the racial attitudes of white Americans, particularly in their views towards Black people. Those who viewed Trump favorably before the election were found to rate Black people as less “evolved” in the post-election survey. Conversely, those who had unfavorable views of Trump rated Black people as more evolved after the election.

Interestingly, this change was not mirrored in the ratings of white people, nor was it influenced by general political partisanship – it was specifically tied to views about Trump.

These findings suggest a polarization of racial attitudes as a result of Trump’s election, with supporters tending towards more dehumanizing views of Black people and opponents showing a move in the opposite direction. The study provides evidence that political leaders, through their rhetoric and behavior, can significantly influence public attitudes on sensitive issues like race.

The researchers concluded that their study provides evidence “that Trump’s election had a polarizing effect on the expression of dehumanizing racial attitudes. We find that Trump supporters became, on average, more willing to report dehumanizing attitudes about Black people. At the same time, we also find that this trend was countered by the fact that Trump’s opponents became less likely to endorse dehumanizing portrayals of Black people.”

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