New census data analyzed by the Washington Post reveal that non-Hispanic whites are now a minority in 22 of the 100 biggest urban areas in America. While metropolises such as Los Angeles, San Antonio and San Francisco have seen minority-majorities prior to 2010, now NYC, San Diego, Las Vegas and Memphis have witness the change firsthand, as Black, Asian and Hispanic populations in those areas outnumber that of white residents.
The data suggests that the population of whites shrank in only 42 of the 100 cities profiled, but each one of the metro regions saw an overall decline in the percentage of whites per capita.
Researchers say that the generally younger crowd of Hispanics and Asians outnumber the percentage of whites still in their childbearing years, and are thus reproducing at a greater rate. Eight percent of adults in America over the age of 65, for example, are non-Hispanic whites. Preliminary data from the 2010 US census revealed earlier this year that the number non-Hispanic white children being born in America had taken a backseat to an increase in minority births in the last decade, and that whites would become the minority by the roughly 2050. In some of the largest cities in America, however, that change has already occurred.
While the change is mostly evident in large cities itself, the change is showing up more and more in the outlying suburbs of the metropolitan regions. In metropolitan areas, minorities were responsible for 98 percent of the population growth in the decade leading up to the 2010 census.
“What’s happened is pivotal,” says demographer William Frey of the Brookings Institution who conducted the analysis. “Large metropolitan areas will be the laboratories for change. The measures they take to help minorities assimilate and become part of the labor force will be studied by other parts of the country that are whiter and haven’t been touched as much by the change.”
Workforce aside, demographers note that that the politics associated with minority groups could show a change in control in some formerly white-dominated locales. The Post notes that in Fairfax, Virginia, for example, a moderate Republican community has switched over to a Democratic-minded city. In the Northern Virginia Regional School District, enrollment between 1995 and 2010 rose by nearly 119,000, though only 1,000 of those students were white.
- The New Metro Minority Map: Regional Shifts in Hispanics, Asians, and Blacks from Census 2010 (bespacific.com)
- Minorities Lead Growth in Biggest Cities (nytimes.com)
- U.S. Moves Closer to Minority Majority (blogs.wsj.com)
- Minorities become a majority in Washington region – Washington Post (news.google.com)