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Ball State Professor: Race Still An Issue Throughout Country
Updated May 5, 2013 12:06 AM | Filed under: Network Indiana
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(MUNCIE) - The inauguration of Barack Obama holds the potential to mark a turning point in the way black and white Americans perceive race.

Ball State Sociology Professor Melinda Messineo says research shows young African-Americans overestimate their chance of hitting it big as athletes or musicians, a trend she attributes to the fact that's where the most widely-known potential black role models have made their reputations.

While Obama has shattered one glass ceiling, there are only two black governors. And only four African-Americans have served in the U.S. Senate, with only one there now.

But Messineo says the symbolic weight of an African-American winning the highest office in the land conveys the message that there are no limits.

Messineo cautions Obama's election does not mean racial discrimination is extinct. She says there's a risk people will conclude those battles are over.

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