54 percent of white voters think life is worse for them now than it was 50 years ago

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Trump's Appeal to Minority Voters?

"Things done changed," said the Notorious B.I.G., and indeed, he spoke the truth: In the last 50 years, the U.S. has seen both dramatic growth in its Hispanic and Asian populations, and the implementation of the 1964 Civil Rights and 1965 Voting Rights Acts, which vastly expanded civil rights to include non-whites.

But one group still feels left behind by the progress train: According to the Pew Research Center, 54% of white voters think life is worse for "people like them" today than it was 50 years ago. This despite that whites still surpass blacks and Hispanics by almost every achievement metric, including income, employment and wealth.

54% of White Voters Think Life Is Worse for Them Now Than It Was 50 Years Ago
Screenshot from page 22.
Source: Pew Research Center

Go figure. Pew did not go into detail as to why so many whites felt this way, but it did highlight a few details: First, that voters with higher education levels were more likely to say things had improved for them, and second, that blacks and Hispanics both overwhelmingly stated life had gotten better (though Hispanics were more likely to respond in the negative).

Asians in the U.S. currently outpace whites in terms of educational attainment, employment and income rates.

Asians and Native Americans were, tellingly, not surveyed, which seems significant especially in the former case: In addition to seeing the steepest population growth of any group in recent years, Asians in the U.S. now outpace whites in terms of educational attainment, employment and income rates.

RELATED: Photos from the South Carolina primary

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54 percent of white voters think life is worse for them now than it was 50 years ago
NORTH AUGUSTA, SC - FEBRUARY 20: Wade Fulmer, 59, dressed in costume as a Civil War undertaker, registers to vote at the Belvedere First Baptist Church polling precinct after participating in the 151st Civil War reenactment of the Battle of Aiken on February 20, 2016 in North Augusta, South Carolina. A reeanctor since 1969, Fulmer was undecided only 30 minutes before voting. North Augusta, SC on February 20, 2016. Statewide voters will cast ballots today in the South Carolina Republican Presidential Primary, the 'first in the south.' (Photo by Mark Makela/Getty Images)
Supporters cheer and hold up placards during the election watch party for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump in Spartanburg, South Carolina, February 20, 2016. / AFP / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
LEXINGTON, SC - FEBRUARY 20: Republican primary voters check in at American Legion Post 7 on February 20, 2016 in Lexington, South Carolina. Today's vote is traditionally known as the 'First in the South' primary. (Photo by Sean Rayford/Getty Images)
WEST COLUMBIA, SC - FEBRUARY 20: Republican primary voter Michael Rabun checks in at a polling location at American Legion Post 90 February 20, 2016 in West Columbia, South Carolina. Today's vote is traditionally known as the 'First in the South' primary. (Photo by Sean Rayford/Getty Images)
An electronic voting both stands inside a polling station inside the Family YMCA of Greater Laurens during the South Carolina Republican presidential primary election in Laurens, South Carolina, U.S., on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016. With South Carolina polls closing at 7 p.m., voters will have their say in the Republican presidential contest as Donald Trump, who holds a commanding lead in most South Carolina polls, and five other Republican candidates face off. Photographer: T.J. Kirkpatrick/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Residents vote in the South Carolina Republican presidential primary election at a polling station inside the South Carolina National Guard armory in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, U.S., on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016. With South Carolina polls closing at 7 p.m., voters will have their say in the Republican presidential contest as Donald Trump, who holds a commanding lead in most South Carolina polls, and five other Republican candidates face off. Photographer: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A poll volunteer holds a roll of 'I Voted' stickers as residents vote in the South Carolina Republican presidential primary election inside a polling station in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, U.S., on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016. With South Carolina polls closing at 7 p.m., voters will have their say in the Republican presidential contest as Donald Trump, who holds a commanding lead in most South Carolina polls, and five other Republican candidates face off. Photographer: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg via Getty Images
LITTLE MOUNTAIN, SC - FEBRUARY 20: A sign sits in front of a polling station during the Republican presidential primary on February 20, 2016 in Little Mountain, South Carolina. Polls show New York businessman Donald Trump leading his closest rival U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
A man holds a Jeb Bush, former Governor Florida and 2016 Republican presidential candidate, campaign sign across the street from a polling station as residents vote in the South Carolina Republican presidential primary election in Charleston, South Carolina, U.S., on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016. With South Carolina polls closing at 7 p.m., voters will have their say in the Republican presidential contest as Donald Trump, who holds a commanding lead in most South Carolina polls, and five other Republican candidates face off. Photographer: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg via Getty Images
CAYCE, SC - FEBRUARY 20: Carl Selander walks out of American Legion Memorial Cayce Post 130 after voting for Ted Cruz in the Republican presidential primary on February 20, 2016 in Cayce, South Carolina. Today's vote is traditionally known as the 'First in the South' primary. (Photo by Sean Rayford/Getty Images)
'I Voted' stickers sit on a table in a polling station inside Our Savior Lutheran Church during the South Carolina Republican presidential primary election in Columbia, South Carolina, U.S., on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016. With South Carolina polls closing at 7 p.m., voters will have their say in the Republican presidential contest as Donald Trump, who holds a commanding lead in most South Carolina polls, and five other Republican candidates face off. Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images
DENMARK, SC - FEBRUARY 20: Poll station officials have lunch while waiting for voters at the Denmark Depot polling precinct on February 20, 2016 in Denmark, South Carolina. Statewide voters will cast ballots today in the South Carolina Republican Presidential Primary, the 'first in the south.' (Photo by Mark Makela/Getty Images)
Residents vote in the South Carolina Republican presidential primary election at the Sears Shelter in Greenville, South Carolina, U.S., on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016. With South Carolina polls closing at 7 p.m., voters will have their say in the Republican presidential contest as Donald Trump, who holds a commanding lead in most South Carolina polls, and five other Republican candidates face off. Photographer: T.J. Kirkpatrick/Bloomberg via Getty Images
CHAPIN, SC - FEBRUARY 20: Voters check in at a polling station at Amicks Ferry Fire Station February 20, 2016 in Chapin, South Carolina. Residents of South Carolina picked their candidate in the state Republican primary today. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
COLUMBIA, SC - FEBRUARY 20: A voter casts her ballet at a polling station at Hand Middle School February 20, 2016 in Columbia, South Carolina. Residents of South Carolina picked their candidate in the state Republican primary today. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
WEST COLUMBIA, SC - FEBRUARY 20: A poster for the South Carolina Republican presidential primary sits on a table at American Legion Post 79 on February 20, 2016 in West Columbia, South Carolina. Today's vote is traditionally known as the 'First in the South' primary. (Photo by Sean Rayford/Getty Images)
WEST COLUMBIA, SC - FEBRUARY 20: Corey Threatt, chairman of the West Columbia #3 polling station, waits to assist a voter in the South Carolina Republican presidential primary at American Legion Post 79 on February 20, 2016 in West Columbia, South Carolina. Today's vote is traditionally known as the 'First in the South' primary. (Photo by Sean Rayford/Getty Images)
Meggett, SC - FEBRUARY 20: A man and woman walk into the Meggett Town Hall polling station in Meggett, South Carolina on February 20, 2016. Statewide voters will cast ballots today in the South Carolina Republican Presidential Primary, traditionally known as the 'First in the South' primary. (Photo by Mark Makela/Getty Images)
Voters wait in line for a polling place to open at Eastlan Baptist Church, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016 in Greenville, S.C. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
A South Carolina voter cast his ballot to vote in the Republican presidential primary Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, in Lexington, S.C. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
A poll worker hands out ballot cards during voting in the South Carolina Republican Presidential Primary Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, in Columbia, S.C. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
South Carolina voters arrive to vote in the Republican presidential primary Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, at Mt. Horeb United Methodist Church in Lexington, S.C. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Zan Hardin holds her four-year-old daughter, Eleanor, after voting in the South Carolina Republican Presidential Primary Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, in Columbia, S.C. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
A South Carolina voter arrives to vote in the Republican presidential primary Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, at Emmanuel Lutheran Church in West Columbia, S.C. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Voters arrive for the South Carolina Republican presidential primary at Forest Lake Park Gym in Columbia, S.C., Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
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But what does it all mean? One might draw conclusions from the anger conservative whites have expressed toward American society today, symbolized by the movement bolstering Donald Trump, and united by the slogan, "make America great again," which hearkens to an era when white dominance went largely unchallenged.

54% of White Voters Think Life Is Worse for Them Now Than It Was 50 Years Ago
Source: Mic/YouTube

One could also argue the wording is vague: "People like you" is a broad term, and may prompt different responses depending on how one most strongly self-identifies — whether that's in terms of race, class, sexual orientation or any other metric.

Either way, the disproportionate rate of disaffection among whites speaks to a rapidly changing country, one where a range of factors, from racial tension to income inequality and the death of the American Dream, have given people a relatively bleak outlook on our current state of affairs.

Maybe we should all move to Canada and leave our American problems behind. Oh, wait.

h/t Pew Research Center

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