A new study conducted by James L. Gibson, a professor at Washington University in St. Louis, finds that blacks feel less empowered under Obama today than they had previously:

From 2005 to 2011, only 45 percent of blacks said they believed the government would allow them to make a public speech, while 67 percent of whites believed they could, the study found.

The study found that while the election of Obama initially boosted feelings of political empowerment among black Americans, those sentiments significantly faded in the years that followed—especially among conservative and religious blacks.

These two groups make up a large segment of the black population, with 56 percent of blacks identifying as “born again,” and 39 percent of blacks as “somewhat conservative,” according to the study.

“First we saw the ’empowerment effect,’ the boost that happens when a member of your group gets elected to an important political position,” says study author James L. Gibson, a professor of government and African-American studies at Washington University. Gibson’s findings are based on national surveys conducted between 2005 and 2011.

“But then perceptions of political freedom deteriorated among conservative and religious blacks,” says Gibson. By 2011, the percentage of blacks who felt as free to speak their mind had dropped to 56 percent, back to pre-Obama levels. (White Americans also reported feeling less free to speak one’s mind under Obama, but the decline was far less than among blacks).

Read more at US News and World Report.

The article does not indicate whether or not blacks who do not identify as conservative and disagree with (some of) the POTUS’ stances feel similarly voiceless.


Have you felt more or less empowered since President Obama’s election?

Do you feel free to express your political position, even if they don’t align with the President’s?

Sound off below!!!!