The US is becoming a less white nation. These are exciting times.
From Smithsonian Magazine:
The United States of 2050 will look different from that of today: whites will no longer be in the majority. The U.S. minority population, currently 30 percent, is expected to exceed 50 percent before 2050. No other advanced, populous country will see such diversity.
In fact, most of America’s net population growth will be among its minorities, as well as in a growing mixed-race population. Latino and Asian populations are expected to nearly triple, and the children of immigrants will become more prominent. Today in the United States, 25 percent of children under age 5 are Hispanic; by 2050, that percentage will be almost 40 percent.
Here’s a wonderful infographic created by the Center for American Progress, which illustrates the racial and ethnic diversity that is growing in the US, based on examining the censuses of 2000 and 2010:
However, the Republican Party, rather than cheering, seems unable to adjust to this reality.
From National Journal:
Republican strategists clearly feel the weight of trying to assemble a national majority with so little support among minorities that they must win three in five whites. “This is the last time anyone will try to do this,” one said. A GOP coalition that relies almost entirely on whites could squeeze out one more narrow victory in November. But if Republicans can’t find more effective ways to bridge the priorities of their conservative core and the diversifying Next America, that weight will grow more daunting every year.
Simply put, based on those changing demographics, this is the last chance the current GOP has to win an election. GOP politicians in the future will have to find a way to appeal to communities of color who may hold quite different opinions about the role of government, as well as many other issues.
Put another way, The New York Times reminds us:
The percentage of the electorate that is white and not of Hispanic origin has been dropping steadily. It was about 90 percent of the vote in the 1970s. By 2008 it was 74 percent. The white vote has declined an average of three points in each presidential election since 1992.
There is no better place to see this than in Texas.
The Daily Kos reported on an analysis of the huge state which has, since the 1960s, consistently delivered the GOP a big chunk of the electoral college, and decided that it is a matter of when, not if, the state will start turning blue.
In 2011, for the first time, Hispanics became the majority of public school students in Texas.
By 2050, the number of Texas public school students is expected to swell to nine million from roughly five million now, and nearly two-thirds will be Hispanic, according to Steve Murdock, a demographer and director of Rice University’s Hobby Center for the Study of Texas. The overall percentage of white students will drop by half to about 15 percent.
From The New York Times:
“When you look at children, there is no doubt. The future of Texas — the future of the United States — is tied to the minority population,” said Dr. Murdock, a former state demographer and director of the United States Census Bureau. “It’s just mathematically true.”
For so many of us, this is great news. For the GOP, it is apparently an opportunity to use these demographics as a scare tactic, and to promote fear of “the other.” Shame on you, GOP.
Related Care2 Coverage
Photo Credit: thinkstock