Ferguson reactions split across racial lines

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There is a black and white difference in the reactions of Americans to what they're seeing in Ferguson, Missouri.

The question is why. The answers are concerning.

Many African-Americans say the protest, the violence and police response involve issues much greater than the shooting of an unarmed teenager.

Gelone Broadmax, who is African-American, agrees.

"The fact that the town is predominantly black and everyone in charge is Caucasian," she said, sitting outside the City Market.

Eight percent of African-Americans surveyed say the shooting raises important racial issues. Almost half of whites say race is getting more attention than it deserves.

Protesters in Ferguson, Missouri.

Matt Steward, who is white, believes people are taking advantage of a tragic situation.

"I hardly believe that the police officer shot a man because of his race," he said.

The Pew Research Survey found deep racial divisions. Two-thirds of African-Americans say police have gone too far, while two-thirds of whites say the response is about right or don't know.

Why such differences? Some now see Ferguson as "anytown USA." They are watching television and seeing problems there that exist and are perhaps festering in their own communities.

"It is an example of things that are occurring across the country," explained Dr. Terri Jett. She teaches political science and ethnic studies at Butler University.

Jett explained the racial and economic disparities common to many other communities: "They recognize there is a lack of educational and job opportunities that they can see in Ferguson and understand. They recognize in their own communities."

Three-fourths of African-Americans questioned had little or no confidence in the ongoing investigation. Most whites had a great deal or fair amount of confidence.Everyone we interview agreed the situation is awful, frightening and needs to be stopped.