Minority numbers rising in Arizona
Census: U.S. diversity growsJon Kamman
The Arizona Republic
Aug. 11, 2005 12:00 AM
Nearly four in 10 Arizonans are racial or ethnic minorities, and the state is heading for a day when people of color or Hispanic backgrounds will be in the majority.
Census estimates prepared for release today show that as of July 2004, Texas became the fourth so-called majority-minority state, where minorities predominate. The others are Hawaii, New Mexico and California.
How soon Arizona is likely to join that club is a matter of conjecture, but the figures on minority growth are dramatic.
Since the 2000 census, minority-group newcomers and newborns have outnumbered non-minorities by a 3-2 ratio.
The figure reflects not just influxes of immigrants, but also births to current minority residents and the arrival of minorities from other states.
"We eventually will go full circle," said Loui Olivas, assistant vice president of academic affairs at Arizona State University. He was referring to Arizona's Hispanic roots as a territory owned by Mexico until the mid-19th century.
"Whether it happens in 2030 or 2040, we know it will happen in Arizona," Olivas said. "It means that the population will be so diverse in cultures and languages that we will be into some very exciting times."
While state leaders consistently look upon minority growth as a boon to Arizona, they acknowledge the strains it places on education and social services. Democratic Sen. Bill Brotherton, who represents a minority-dominated district in Phoenix, said, "The challenge is if these minorities, especially Hispanics, are not able to speak English."
Observing that "this is a country of immigrants," Brotherton said such people "tend to be go-getters. Over the long haul, they tend to invigorate our society."
In 1990, the state's minority component was 28.3 percent. It rose to 36.2 percent by 2000, and stood at 38.9 percent in the mid-2004 survey. That has meant the addition of roughly 376,000 minority-group members in four years. Meanwhile, the increase among Whites of non-Hispanic background totaled about 238,000.
Olivas said all states, and especially those with rapid growth, face problems in providing health care, education, financial benefits and other services to low-income residents, a group with a large proportion of minorities.
But the emerging strength of minorities in the workforce "should be sending signals of dollar signs to companies that want to take advantage of that growing market," he said.
Senate President Ken Bennett said Arizona's growing minority population brings "more opportunities than challenges."
The Census Bureau noted that Arizona and five other states, Maryland, Mississippi, Georgia, Nevada and New York, all have populations of about 40 percent minorities and are candidates for future "majority-minority" status.
Overall, the proportion of minorities in the United States rose from 30.9 percent in 2000 to 32.6 percent in 2004.
Atlas is about to shrug.
Woo Hoo! Gotta keep paying those taxes to support those illegals! Yeah, I agree. "IT" will probably happen in Arizona.
We need to go back to our roots and become "ethnic" again, ... We need to separate the whites into Slavs, Germans, Jews, Greeks, Nordics, Pommies, Ozzies, Welsh, you know those groups of people that used to kill each other with some regularity but now live side by side without raising the "members only" flag?????
Now that we're the Minority we might as well be a mini-Minority and get some government benefits.
We may be outnumbered, but we are still considered to be the "advantaged class of oppressors"
Bienvenido a Nuevo Aztlan!
Maryland joins the party
Minorities fuel Md. growth
Blacks, Hispanics, Asians make up at least 40% of state's population; 'Foothold in American Dream'; Affordable home prices drive influx to suburbs
By Kelly Brewington
Originally published August 11, 2005
More than four in 10 Marylanders are minorities, as Latinos, Asians and blacks flock to the Baltimore and Washington suburbs, accounting for much of the state's overall growth in population in recent years.
Maryland is one of nine states nationwide in which minorities make up at least 40 percent of the population, according to U.S. Census Bureau estimates released today. Demographers believe the increasing diversity in the suburbs may have a simple explanation: pursuit of the classic American success story.
"Minorities are moving to the suburbs for the same reason everyone's moving to the suburbs; you have single-family homes, better school districts and the crime is typically lower,"
(yeah, crime is lower and the schools are better until you have 50 people living in the single family dwellings)
said William Frey, a visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington. "Minorities are just like anyone else, they want a foothold in the American Dream."
Shaheena Naeem, 41, of Columbia said she couldn't endure the frenetic pace of New York, like so many of her friends who emigrated there from Pakistan.
"I hate crowds," she said. "I didn't want to deal with crime. And the houses in the city are smaller and too close together."
Her family's road to the United States began in their native Pakistan, ran through Saudi Arabia, where Naeem's husband was offered a job at an engineering company; then to Maryland - first Silver Spring and finally Columbia five years ago.
Families such as Naeem's are driving growth in Howard County. From 2000 to 2004, the county's Asian population increased by 8,137, or 42 percent, data show.
For Naeem, the Baltimore suburbs have everything she hoped for: good schools for her five children and economic opportunity for her and her husband. The couple own two businesses in Woodlawn - a boutique and an Asian grocery.
"I like the quiet neighborhoods," she said.
Tranquility, or the perception of it, often prompts a move to the suburbs, but affordable home prices can make the desire a reality.
Dunbar Brooks, a demographer at the Baltimore Metropolitan Council, said relative housing affordability has helped drive the influx to the suburbs.
"I call it the combined Baltimore-Washington effect," he said. "Washington is an employment magnet, but we have cheaper housing than the Washington area, so our suburbs are viewed as an affordable place to live."
In addition, families have chosen Baltimore's suburbs over the city in recent decades because of crime and troubled schools, he said. And while the recent construction boom may be transforming Baltimore's image and attracting new residents, the city's new home-buyers tend not to be the typical minority family, Brooks said.
"If you look at the new housing in the city- look at the price," he said. "It's high end; it's condos. You tend to draw small families, empty nesters. A condo for $500,000, you're not going to see little kiddies running around there. It's not the average family housing."
The immigration, coupled with an exodus of African-Americans from central cities, has spurred suburban growth.
In 1990, minorities - which include all people except non-Hispanic whites - made up 31 percent of Maryland's population, according to census data. The recent growth has put Maryland on par with four other states nationwide with minority populations of about 40 percent - Mississippi, Georgia, New York and Arizona.
The statistics being released today also show that Texas has joined Hawaii, California and New Mexico as "majority-minority," states where whites no longer are the dominant group.
The Washington suburbs of Montgomery and Prince George's counties continue to be magnets for minorities and immigrants, but the census figures show that the Baltimore region is also diversifying.
While overall population growth in the Baltimore suburbs slowed from 2003 to 2004, compared with recent prior years, minorities outpaced the overall population growth in much of the Baltimore region.
In Howard County, for example, the white population fell by 1,243, but the Asian population grew by 2,067.
In Baltimore County, while the white population continued a trend of decline, the black population rose to 182,831, an increase of 29,608 - or 19 percent - since 2000.
In Baltimore City, the only major groups to gain in numbers were Hispanics and Asians. About 11,216 Asian residents call the city home, along with 13,574 Hispanics.
Anne Arundel County showed continued Hispanic and black growth, with the Latino population rising from 12,902 in 2000 to 16,767 in 2004 - a 30 percent increase.
Harford and Carroll counties, meanwhile, remained predominantly non-Hispanic white, but showed modest gains among minority populations.
While minority gains around the region are notable, some groups insist their numbers are larger than what the Census Bureau reported.
For years, Latino advocates in Baltimore have estimated that the city's Hispanic population is probably more than twice the census estimates.
But they note growth outside the city and hope it calls attention to the popular misconception that Latinos only live in the city's southeast neighborhoods.
"They're all over," said Gigi Guzman, who operates a GlobalTech Bilingual Institute, a language school in Highlandtown that serves primarily Latino immigrants. Guzman, originally from Chile, has lived in Baltimore for more than three decades.
"There are Latino-owned companies outside of the city, that may not be easily identified," she said. "We're talking information technology and staffing companies, and not just small family-owned grocery stores."
Funny how diversity is always a strain on social services and never benefits anyone except liberals trying to increase their voting rolls. Myabe they should quit murdering their children. You reap what you sow.
Nope, it's not funny at all. It's horribly, horribly true.
I, for one, welcome our third world overlords.