U.S. minorities now represent more than half of America’s population under the age of 1, the Census Bureau said, a historic demographic milestone with profound political, economic and social implications.
“2011 is the first time the population of infants under age 1 is majority minority,” said Robert Bernstein, a Census Bureau spokesman.
The latest statistics — which also count the national population younger than 5 as 49.7% minority in 2011, an increase from 49% in 2010 — portend a future of a more racially diverse America, with new and growing populations playing more important roles politically and economically in years to come, analysts say.
Like other analysts, Kenneth M. Johnson, senior demographer at the Carsey Institute and professor of sociology at the University of New Hampshire, isn’t surprised at the trend. “We’ve known it was going to come, but the question was what year the “crossover point” would happen, he said…
Johnson sees the trend as an opportunity for more Americans to embrace diversity. More children are going to be exposed to a more diverse group of classmates, and that will affect attitudes and outlook…
Mention it that way to your friendly neighborhood Tea Party commissar. Then, duck and run!
Jeff Passell, senior demographer at the Pew Hispanic Center, called the Census numbers “a cumulative effect of 35 to 40 years of immigration” bringing large numbers of Latinos, Asians and other immigrants into the United States.
He said the Hispanic population in particular is very young, much more concentrated in child-bearing years, and has a higher fertility rate than the white, non-Hispanic population. Lately, he says, there are a lot more births among native Hispanics in the United States than new Hispanic immigrants, a “cumulative effect” of immigration. Also a cumulative effect of poor education, machismo and religion-based culture.
Michael White, professor of sociology at Brown University, said the rise of minorities fits into a longer-term evolution of the U.S. population…truly a “melting pot,” he said.
White says it’s hard to say how the changes will affect politics and that one can’t assume that ethnic patterns will determine voting patterns. Local economic issues, for example, will evolve differently in different states and cities, and there are economic benefits of having a younger population, he said.
Ain’t he naive? Aside from essential economic issues, cultural divisions that reflect class assignment by ethnicity and color – he makes no mention of the traditional WASP leaders of American conservatism and their even more bigoted cousins in the Tea Party.
Wander through the comments following this CNN article. If you thought you didn’t live in a racist nation you’re in for a sad awakening. The semantics range from patent leather rationales for bigotry to straight-up racism. The more things change, the more some fools fight harder to remain the same.