Race in America

Report: Americans' support for Black Lives Matter movement has dropped

A significant portion of support comes from the 81% of Black adults who support the movement.

Black Lives Matter flag before an MLS soccer match.
Ted S. Warren / AP
SMS

Americans’ support for the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement has dropped significantly since the murder of George Floyd three years ago.

According to a new survey by the Pew Research Center released Wednesday, 51% of U.S. adults support the movement today, which is down from 67% in 2020.

"A majority of Americans say the increased focus on issues of race and racial inequality in the past three years hasn’t led to changes that have improved the lives of Black people," the report stated as one of the reasons why the support fell.

Three years ago, 46% of Americans believed that the focus on these issues, ignited by the murder of George Floyd, would not result in significant change, while a majority, 52%, expressed confidence in the potential for change.

But opinions on the movement do vary by race, age, and political views.

According to the report, a significant majority of Black adults, 81%, support BLM. However, when it comes to White adults, only 42% express their support. Meanwhile, 63% of Asian adults and 61% of Hispanic adults support the movement today.

White adults are also more likely to perceive the movement as "divisive" or "dangerous" compared to other racial groups. White adults were also less likely to describe it as "empowering." Overall, Black, Hispanic, and Asian adults were shown to be more likely than White adults to say Black people are treated less fairly than White people, Pew states.

The study also indicates that people under 30 are more likely to support the movement, with 64% of adults aged 18 to 29 expressing support. In contrast, support decreases among older age groups, with 52% of those aged 30 to 49, 46% of those aged 50 to 64, and 41% of individuals aged 65 and older supporting it.

Politically, Pew states that 84% of those who are or lean towards Democrats support the movement, while 82% of those who are more conservative or Republicans oppose it.

The center says these findings are based on a survey of 5,073 randomly selected adults which was conducted from April 10–16, 2023.