Moche Leo Attu – Much to be expected, the journ-0-lisps over at the Washington Post report on a Kaiser-WaPo poll on how Michelle Obama is viewed by women (and men) black and white. One of the most interesting paragraphs in their misunderstanding of their own poll results is:
About four in 10 black women say their overall impression of black women has improved because of Obama, compared with fewer than one in seven white women. Some black women who said Obama had changed their view described her as being an alternative to racial stereotypes that regularly reach American homes through reality TV and other pop-culture programming. In the Post-Kaiser survey, which included interviews with more than 800 black women, more than half of black women without a college education say Obama has changed their overall impression of black women, compared with two out of 10 black women with college degrees.
The key word here is “improved.” If you look at the table of survey results in the hard copy of the Post, which none of the on-line links connect to as far as I can tell, you find out that the actual question was “Has having Michelle Obama as the country’s first African American first lady changed your overall impression of black women in America?” It’s easy to imagine that of the 41% of black women who answer that question Yes, at least 1% (and maybe 4 or 5%) think Michelle Obama has changed the country’s impression of black women for the worse, and of the 15% of white women who said Yes, 5% or more don’t think “improved” when they read change.
Aside from that, the pollsters only gave the respondents three options: Yes (she changed my opinion), No (she didn’t), or No opinion. Since the poll question doesn’t actually ask whether she changed the respondents opinion for better or worse, even if we interpret change to mean improve as the Post does and assume all the Yes respondents think the change was for the better, we don’t know how many people who say No she did not change their opinion are actually saying No she didn’t improve my opinion because she made it worse (and we don’t know if the Kasier pollsters on the phone were as imprecise as the Post is in confusing change and improve when they asked the question.)
The rest of the article is shot through with stupidity, assuming most non-black Americans (in their survey there seem to only be black and white people) get their “negative” impressions of blacks or black women from TV and never had a “positive” image of black women before Michelle Obama. This contradicts other parts of the poll itself, that reveal that lots of blacks and whites have dated the other race, work with them, etc. Whatever impressions, negative and positive, any of these groups have of black women, there is no reason to think they are based on their TV viewing rather than their daily interactions with people at work, on the street, and in their neighborhoods.
Black women White women Black men White men
|How many of your close friends are a different race than you — all of them, most of them, some of them, hardly any of them, or none of them?||5%All of them||5%||1%||11%||3%|
|19Most of them||23||16||25||13|
|56Some of them||48||60||48||62|
|14Hardly any of them||12||17||10||18|
|5None of them||12||6||6||3|
|0One of them||0||0||0||0|
|Have you ever dated someone of a different race, or not?||52%Yes, has||50%||40%||68%||51%|
|48No, has not||50||60||31||49|
|Would you be willing to marry someone of another race, or not?||75%Yes, willing||67%||62%||80%||82%|
|21No, not willing||27||30||11||16|
You can read the moronicity for yourself at: