Residents of NJ are divided on whether the past decade has been good to them, with 30% saying life has improved, 34% saying it has worsened, and 31% believing nothing’s changed since 2000, according to a poll by the Monmouth University/Gannett New Jersey, released on Tuesday, Dec. 29.
But they’re an optimistic bunch, with about half expecting a better ten years ahead.
Among under-30s, two in five felt life had improved, while 25% thought it had gone south; among 30 to 50 year olds, 35% felt life had improved, 31% said it got worse. From that age upwards, NJians were less optimistic, with 44% of 50-69 year olds saying life had worsened, and just 24% who felt life got better. Of those 70 years and older, the majority, about 45% felt the quality of life remains the same, while 38% feel it has sunk.
The survey found that black and Hispanic New Jerseyans are more positive than white state residents about the past decade’s influence on their lives. About 4 in 10 black and Hispanic adults felt life had improved over the past ten years. Just 1 in 4 white residents felt this was so.
Among Hispanics, 35% found life has gotten worse, while 40% found it improved. Among white residents, 38% felt life had worsened, and 32% found it unchanged.

Optimism reigns among most NJ residents for the next decade, however, with 48% expecting improvement, 23% expecting no change, and just 18% expecting life to get worse. Among the optimistic, 7 in 10 are aged 18-29, while 52% are 30-49. Among those aged 50-69, 35% were hopeful for the next decade, and among those older than 70, just 29%.
66% of black NJ residents and 68% of Hispanics feel the next decade will bring an improvement in their lives, while 41% of whites and 49% of Asians felt the same.
Have your say in our own Baristaville poll.

Reuters editor, food blogger, photographer, diva of the domestic arts

4 replies on “NJ Residents Divided on Decade Past, Hopeful of Future”

  1. Thanks Corzine!!
    Well at least NJ ain’t California.
    Personally, life is great. But I’ve always been an optimist/glass half-full kinda guy. I’ve also been very good at cutting and running from things and people that bring me down.
    That AND the birth of the little prof AND 23 years with mrs. prof?
    I’m not so dumb as to pretend that the last decade was bad.
    Everyday is a blessing!!
    Moreover, the election of a Black man as President (less than 40 years after Jim Crow) continues to make me proud EVERYDAY!!
    (Yes. Even though I disagree with him on much.)

  2. Prof, I’m more a ‘glass half empty and cracked’ kind of person (I consider myself to be a realist rather than a pessimist)but I have to agree with your comment about the election of President Obama. I didn’t vote for him and he turned out to be as liberal as I was afraid he’d be (and I’m a pretty liberal person) but every time I see him and his family on TV representing our country I can’t help but smile. I cried through his inaugeration (not for political reasons) knowing what that moment meant to so many people. It was a very proud moment and probably the best of 2009. JMHO.

  3. Ten years ago I was fresh out of college and living in a different state, so it’s hard to compare then to now. I thought the country would be in better shape than it is today, but can I really complain? Living inside, eating hot food three (four?) meals a day and exactly zero days of unemployment even though we’ve had two recessions.

Comments are closed.