Niagara Gazette

Columns

October 16, 2013

BRADBERRY: So, who ARE the American people, anyway?

(Continued)

Niagara Gazette — Contradicting the conclusion of the 1968 Kerner Commission Report on Civil Disorders which warned in part that, “Our nation is moving toward two societies, one black, one white, separate and unequal”, Esquire seems to suggest that we’ve overcome that hurdle.

Generally refuted by some who rejected the premise that racism was the chief cause of the riots forty-five years ago, most agreed with the conclusion; that we were moving toward two societies with class, not race as the primary cause for the growing separation.

The Esquire Report seems to suggest that the gap has been steadily shrinking since the Kerner Commission’s dire forecast as our more racially diverse, but more culturally homogenous middle, 51 percent find comfort in common ground, closer to each other in the vast center, not defined by the extreme positions taken by the few who prefer to reside on the fringes.

According to Robert Blizzard, a partner at Public Opinion Strategies, the lead pollster for Mitt Romney in 2012, whose firm co-created the survey with the Benenson Strategy Group, pollsters for President Obama, “Just because Washington is polarized doesn’t mean America is.”

The survey (The Benenson Strategy Group and Public Opinion Strategies conducted a nationwide survey from August 5-11, 2013, with 2,410 registered voters) breaks the country down into eight distinct segments: “two on the far right “The Righteous Right” and “The Talk Radio Heads”, two on the far left “The Bleeding Hearts” and “The Gospel Left”, and four in the middle that represent nothing less than a new American center “Minivan Moderates,” “The MBA Middle,” “The Pick-up Populists, and “The Whatever Man.”

It characterizes the people in the center as “patriotic and proud” highlighting these little gems:

• 66 percent brag that America is “still the greatest country in the world.”

• 54 percent see America as a model that other countries should want to be like.

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