Interracial Friendships Slip?

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Seventy-one years after the birth of Martin Luther King, Jr., the incidence of interracial friendships is still difficult to pin down. The National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago analyzed data from its 1998 General Social Survey, an annual survey of a random sample of 22,000 individuals, to study the occurrence of interracial friendships. Response rates varied greatly depending on how the question was phrased. When asked "Are any of your friends that you feel close to black or white?", 42.1 percent of whites said yes. However, when asked to give the names of friends they feel close to before identifying their race, only 6 percent of whites listed a close friend of a different race or ethnicity.

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