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WEEKEND READING: National Journal and Maribel Hastings Document the Changing Face of America

America's Voice | Released on 05/18/2012

As Census Numbers on Births Show the Future of America, Special Supplement Analyzes How Immigrants are Revitalizing Our Nation 

This week, the U.S. Census Bureau announced that for the first time, the majority of children born in the U.S. belong to racial and ethnic groups currently considered “minorities.”  As a range of editorials have pointed out, these demographic changes are transforming policies and politics, even if some policymakers are slow to adjust their thinking.  Today, the National Journal publishes a lengthy supplement documenting the stories and realities behind this changing face of America, with reporting by America’s Voice Education Fund senior advisor Maribel Hastings.  In the cover story entitled, “Future Arrives to Diversify Small-Town USA,” Hastings reveals how the demographic changes captured by the Census Bureau are playing out throughout the nation – including and especially in areas of the U.S. unaccustomed to their new levels of diversity.

Writes Hastings, “By now, many Americans are familiar with the long-range projections that mark America’s transition into a world nation: By 2023, ethnic minorities will represent a majority of the under-18 population; by 2050, minorities will represent a majority of the entire population.  Over the past several decades, this powerful current has infused new energy and challenges alike into metropolitan areas that have long been magnets for immigration, including New York and Los Angeles, Miami and Phoenix, Dallas and Denver. But increasingly, this tide of change is spilling over into places that previously had not been shaped by diversity. While almost 50 percent of U.S. Hispanics live in 10 large metropolitan areas, almost two-thirds of the past decade’s Hispanic population growth occurred outside of those areas.  This is bringing propulsive ethnic and racial change, with all of its opportunities and complications, to places not used to it.”

Writing of the political and policy implications of the demographic changes, Hastings notes, “Political leaders at all levels face a decision that often determines the immediate fortunes of their communities: whether to facilitate change and provide support for integration or to perpetuate divisions and risk economic strain or even collapse.”

America’s Voice Education Fund — Harnessing the power of American voices and American values to win common sense immigration reform.

www.americasvoiceonline.org

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