Are Jews the most distrustful of all American ethnic groups? After reading Steve Sailer's insightful piece tonight contrasting the Cuban- and Jewish-American lobbies, I wondered if Jews as a group are more suspicious of people, and perhaps lack of trust comes from a history of negative relations with others. As an example, Ashley Montagu once said, if you meet a gentile, it's a good operating hypothesis that he is an anti-Semite.
The General Social Survey asked 26,201 Americans if people can be trusted. I list the percent who said they cannot be trusted by ethnic group:
Percent who say that people cannot be trusted
Puerto Ricans 79.2
Other Spanish 73.1
West Indian 69.5
Asian Indian 59.6
All Americans 55.9
French Canadian 55.0
English/ Welsh 44.6
Jews are not distrustful--just the opposite. They are at the bottom of the list, along with those whose ancestors are from northern Europe.
At the top of the list, there are a number of poor and non-white minority groups. The only nonwhites in the bottom half are Japanese and Chinese American--wealthy minority groups like American Jews.
People from southern Europe tend to be distrsutful, but the really striking pattern in my mind is the high scores of all the Hispanic groups. Francis Fukuyama has argued that social trust is necessary for economic prosperity, and you can see that the high-trust groups are successful. The suspiciousness of Hispanics may prevent them from developing the kind of cooperativeness needed for upwardly mobility. This is one more fact that leads one to conclude that mass immigration from the South means more long-term poverty for America.
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