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Opposition to Race-Targeting: Self-Interest, Stratification Ideology, or Racial Attitudes?

Lawrence Bobo and James R. Kluegel
American Sociological Review
Vol. 58, No. 4 (Aug., 1993), pp. 443-464
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2096070
Page Count: 22
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Opposition to Race-Targeting: Self-Interest, Stratification Ideology, or Racial Attitudes?
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Abstract

Although traditional anti-black prejudice among whites has decreased since the 1940s, social policies designed to assist blacks continue to face opposition and controversy. Accounts have pointed to self-interest, American beliefs about inequality, or persistent negative racial attitudes as underlying causes of widespread opposition to race-targeted policies. We hypothesize that opposition hinges on the explicitness of the race-targeting and whether the policy's goal is opportunity enhancement or equality of outcomes. We also hypothesize that the influence of individuals' self-interest, beliefs about inequality, and racial attitudes on opinions differs by whether or not a policy is race-targeted and by a policy's goal. We use data from the 1990 General Social Survey to analyze opinion toward race-targeted versus income-targeted opportunity-enhancing policies and toward race-targeted versus income-targeted equal outcomes policies. Results of these analyses lend general support to our hypotheses, and in particular, underscore the influence of group self-interest and perceived discrimination on white opposition to race-targeted policy.

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