The shooting incident in a St. Louis suburb is still under investigation, and just over half of Americans are not sure yet whether the police officer involved is guilty of murdering a black teenager. But most blacks have already made up their minds that the policeman should be found guilty. Blacks are also more convinced that the violent protests since the shooting occurred are mostly legitimate outrage rather than criminal activity.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 23% of all American Adults believe the police officer who shot and killed 18-year-old Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri should be found guilty of murder. Twenty-six percent (26%) think he was acting in self-defense. Fifty-one percent (51%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
Read more here:: A Tale of Two Cities? Blacks, Whites Sharply Disagree About Ferguson
Sharp black-white divide on perceptions of Ferguson
Blacks and whites have sharply different reactions to the police shooting of an unarmed teen in Ferguson, Mo., and the protests and violence that followed. Blacks are about twice as likely as whites to say that the shooting of Michael Brown “raises important issues about race that need to be discussed.” Wide racial differences also are evident in opinions about of whether local police went too far in the aftermath of Brown’s death, and in confidence in the investigations into the shooting.
The new national survey by the Pew Research Center, conducted Aug. 14-17 among 1,000 adults, finds that the public overall is divided over whether Brown’s shooting raises important issues about race or whether the issue of race is getting more attention than it deserves: 44% think the case does raise important issues about race that require discussion, while 40% say the issue of race is getting more attention than it deserves.
By about four-to-one (80% to 18%), African Americans say the shooting in Ferguson raises important issues about race that merit discussion. By contrast, whites, by 47% to 37%, say the issue of race is getting more attention than it deserves.
- Blacks, whites sharply divided over response to Ferguson shooting (mcclatchydc.com)
- Americans Divided on Whether Brown Shooting Raises Race Issues (usnews.com)