US Public Opinion Shifts in Favour of Black Lives Matter
- Black Lives Matter Support Reaches Majority: Fifty-three per cent of American voters now support the movement, up from 42% shortly before the most recent wave of protests began in May (, 2020). Another study found over two-thirds of Americans (67%) say they somewhat or strongly support Black Lives Matter (Pew, 2020). In recent weeks, more than 700 cities and towns spanning all 50 states have seen Black Lives Matter demonstrations – which researchers are calling the most sweeping and sustained such protests in American history.
- Another new study found many more Americans have come to grasp the severity of racial justice issues over the past five years. While 51% considered racism and discrimination a big problem in 2015, today, a wide majority of 76% believe so (Monmouth University, 2020).
- Generational & Party Divides: The survey also showed the generational divide we outlined in The Brief. While 66% of 18- to 34-year-olds back the protests, support falls to 44% for those aged 65+.
- Despite the movement enjoying bipartisan support, there are marked differences between the political parties. While 87% of Democrats support the demonstrations today, only 53% of Republicans do, according to a Washington Post-Schar School poll.
- White Support Edges Up: The demonstrations have seen larger numbers of white and other non-Black protesters standing with Black activists. But while support for Black Lives Matter has risen significantly among white Americans – from 34% in mid-May to 44% currently, according to .
- In the more nuanced Pew study, a majority of white respondents (60%) said they support the movement either strongly or somewhat – lagging behind support expressed by Hispanic and Asian Americans (77% and 75% respectively).
For more on how the Black Lives Matter demonstrations are changing behaviours and attitudes, see and the Anti-Racism Education Boom.