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To give you a sense for the data (and so you don’t have to click back and forth between links), here’s the breakdown of the response rates for people who are interested. When it comes to the highest positive response rate, most women, regardless of their race, appear to favor white men, whereas most men, again, regardless of their race, tend to favor Asian women.
In terms of the lowest response rate, women appeared to shun black men, whereas men tended to shun black women. Jenny, using what I can only assume is that same “high-powered sociological lens” I’ve encountered before, concludes that this clearly demonstrates that race matters, and serves to counter accusations that we are living in a color-blind, post-racial world.
The important point here is that Let’s say, for instance, that men tend to prefer women shorter than themselves as dating partners (the reasons for this preference or it’s actual existence need not necessarily concern us).
If that were the case, provided there are any average differences in height among the races, we would still see different response rates to and from each racial group, even though no one was selecting on the basis of race.
The data is labeled “unfortunate” in some respects, because there appear to be winners and losers, and those winners and losers seem to break down along racial lines.
When it comes to mating, it seems that everyone doesn’t get to join hands and cross the finish line at the same time so that we all end up with equally-high self-esteem (I know; I was shocked too).
To see why I would say this only requires that one understands a very basic statistical concept: correlation does not equal causation.
If I were to state instead that, “I have have no interesting in dating a black woman”, I would likely still receive some condemnation, but probably less than for the first statement.
Finally, if I were to state that, “I have no interest in dating a man”, I would receive very little, if any, condemnation for it, even from those who advocate strongly for gay rights.
Preferences can be funny things, or at least our judgments of them.
If I were to state that, “I have no interest in hiring a black person to do this job”, I would receive more than a little condemnation for that view.