Discover more from Defusing American Anger: A depolarization endeavor
Does academic research overstate conservative-side racism and bigotry? Does that present an obstacle to depolarization work?
For those serious about reducing toxic us-vs-them polarization, we must be willing to examine biases in race-related research.
I put up an excerpt from my book on my book website: it’s an excerpt about something I think is important, because it relates to how liberal bias can present obstacles to political depolarization work. It’s an excerpt about some often-referenced academic research that purports to find evidence that many Americans are racist—especially those who are politically conservative. This research is often used to build support for the narrative that a significant underlying motivator of Republican stances is bigotry (e.g., if you read Ezra Klein’s Why We’re Polarized, that’s a big part of how he explained the nature of American divides).
But when you dig into that research, you’ll find that these interpretations of the data seem very biased and overly pessimistic: basically they seem to be taking the worst-case, most pessimistic interpretation of the data. And some other academics have criticized this work for this.
The excerpt from my book is here: https://www.american-anger.com/post/academics-exaggerate-racism-amongst-conservatives-which-adds-to-polarization.
One paper I recently learned about that makes some similar points is by Musa Al Gharbi titled Race and the race for the White House. I think this is a very important paper.
As always, if you have thoughts/criticisms on this, please leave a comment or reach out to me: I am always open to adjusting my thinking.