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New poll shows how Americans really feel about Black Lives Matter

Demonstrators celebrate as a business burns after it was set on fire during rioting following the grand jury announcement in the Michael Brown case on Nov. 24, 2014, in Ferguson, Missouri. A new Harvard-Harris online survey three years after the shooting revealed how Americans really feel about the Black Lives Matter movement. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

A new poll revealed how Americans really feel about Black Lives Matter — and the majority of the country's sentiments are not in line with what much of the media portray.

According a Harvard-Harris survey poll released to The Hill, an overwhelming majority of Americans — 57 percent — said their view of Black Lives Matter is negative. Just 43 percent of respondents said they have a positive view of the global activist group.

Harvard-Harris co-director Mark Penn reacted to the results of the survey, saying that "the public is sympathetic to the problem of police using too much force." But, he added, Americans "overall are unsympathetic to the Black Lives Matter movement."

"As you might expect, white voters are sharply negative to the group while African-Americans give them positive ratings," Penn explained.

Below is a more specific breakdown of how race and political party affiliation factor into Americans' views of Black Lives Matter:

35 percent of whites have a positive view

83 percent of blacks have a positive view

21 percent of Republicans have a positive view

18 percent of Trump voters have a positive view

65 percent of Democrats have a positive view

66 percent of Clinton voters have a positive view

According to The Hill, the polling group conducted the online survey July 19-24 among a group of 2,051 registered U.S. voters.

Among those surveyed, 37 percent identified as Democrat, 31 percent said they are Republican and 27 percent claimed to be independent. The remaining four percent of respondents said their political affiliation is something else. The Hill also reported the demographic breakdown of those polled as being 65 percent white, 14 percent Hispanic and 12 percent black.

The full results of the Harvard-Harris survey are expected to be publicly released by the end of the week.

The Harvard-Harris survey results come just days before the third anniversary of the shooting that sparked the movement.

On Aug. 9, 2014, a Ferguson, Missouri, police officer fatally shot 18-year-old Michael Brown. The officer was later found not guilty, but the tragic event had already sparked riots and protests nationwide, as thousands showed their opposition to what they saw as police brutality.

The series of riots and protests eventually came to be known as the Black Lives Matter movement.

Last week, President Donald Trump spoke to a crowd of law enforcement officers on New York's Long Island. During the speech, the president told the officers not to be "too nice" when taking suspects into custody.

"And when you see these thugs being thrown into the back of a paddy wagon, you just them thrown in, rough. I say, 'please don't be too nice.' Like when you guys put somebody in the car, and you're protecting their head. The way they put their hand over, like don't hit their head, and they've just killed somebody — don't hit their head," Trump said on Friday.

The comment sparked yet another media firestorm, as some perceived Trump's remarks to be unsympathetic to the issue of police brutality.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders later told reporters that the president was "making a joke," leaving reporters to question whether the issue is really something to joke about.

Following the comments, Chuck Rosenburg, acting head of the Drug Enforcement Administration, sent an email to DEA employees saying that Trump had "condoned police misconduct regarding the treatment of individuals placed under arrest by law enforcement."

In the email, Rosenburg offered a "strong reaffirmation of the operating principles to which we, as law enforcement professionals, adhere," CNN reported.

(H/T: Daily Caller)

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