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The Ever-Changing America

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 8/10/2015 Rev. Peter E. Bauer
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"The Ever Changing America "
Rev. Peter E. Bauer
Recently, I visited the first house that I remember living in as a child. This house located at 520 N. Mason Street in North Portland was in an integrated neighborhood in the 1950's. Working class white and black families lived together, interspersed with other ethnic groups. Our next door neighbors were a Russian immigrant family.
As the 1960's, 1970's, 1980's progressed the neighborhood and the greater Albina Kerr Community became predominantly African-American, and then in the 1990's and now post 2000,the neighborhood again has transitioned back to being an integrated area; now populated with middle class African-American and Caucasian families and lots of young people working in technology.
On Sunday morning, you will see lots of young people gathered at the Overlook Restaurant just off of Interstate Avenue for brunch and mimosas. I never remember seeing that phenomena as a child.
According to a new study released by the Pew Research Center, by 2065 the United States will have 117 million more people than today, with no racial or ethnic majority taking the place of today's white majority.
Non-Hispanic whites will remain the largest racial or ethnic group in the overall population but will become less than a majority, the projections show. Currently, 62% of the population, they will make up 46 percent of it in 2065. Hispanics will be 24 percent of the population (18 percent now), Asians will be 14 percent (6 percent now ) and blacks will be 13 percent ( 12 percent now. )
Another significant finding will be that Asians will outnumber Hispanics among all immigrants -- 38 percent to 31 percent ( Today those shares are 26 percent and 47 percent ).
What will this mean ? The education levels of the foreign-born population could rise sharply.
D'Vera Cohn has stated in her Pew Research Center Article ( see above ) that among recent immigrants from Asia, for example, 57 percent have completed college, compared with 13 percent for recent Mexican immigrants and 28 percent for immigrants from other Central or South American nations.
The ramifications of this study will have profound influence in the future of education policy and for planning of cities and communities. More people who are foreign born and who will of immigrant status will be contributing members to the fabric of American society.
There will a greater need for more programs that will be foreign language and culture specific. Also, current majority culture Americans will need to broaden their knowledge base regarding various different and distinct cultures and the contributions that they bring to the wider society.
Right now, there is a need to help and support some ethnic groups (i.e. Mexican-American young people ) to assist them regarding pursuing higher education as well as assisting them with budgeting and financing their education. Some organizations have sponsored Empowerment Conferences to help young people to become knowledgeable about their educational and vocational opportunities post high school.
The changes in the population demographics that we are experiencing as a country will present challenges, but will also present great blessings and opportunities as America becomes an even more diverse, more educated and talented citizenry.
May we do everything we can to develop public policies that will ensure the success of an ever-changing America.

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