Source: "Political Attitudes," Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies' 1996 National Opinion Poll, Washington, DC: Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, 1996.

With respect to four out of five of the issues surveyed in the 1996 Joint Center poll, Blacks exhibited a very high degree of consensus.

     In consideration of the Justice's position, we are driven to the absurdity of having to consider that Blacks in America are not a racially or ethnically coherent group and that they exist for most purposes as peoples with "color," but behave as individuals. As such, the Justice fails again to distinguish between negative and positive aspects involved in racial stereotyping and as such, exhibits a wholly unsophisticated use of the sociological dimension of the issue of Black goal construction. For example, whites may consider Blacks through all sorts of stereotypes, a phenomenon that is not controlled by Blacks. However, the fact that Blacks behave coherently has also been necessary for them to defeat these stereotypes by achieving their social goals, thus rendering the stereotypical depictions of whites far less important than the objectives themselves.

Congressional District Analysis

     O'Connor's view that the effect on elected representatives of districts with a racial majority "sends the message that their primary obligation is to represent only that group's members, rather than their constituency as a whole"7 is specious, because it was seldom raised in the era when whites dominated all districts, or even today where there are clear patterns of white mis-representation of Blacks in their districts, as will be shown below. This aspect of Justice O'Connor's decision falls into the category of representation research and asks the question whether or how Blacks have been represented either with respect to their majority or minority proportion of the population in a congressional district.

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November 1999