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Minority Births Outnumber White Births

A majority minority births now in the USA. We’ll ask what that means.

A nurse holds a baby in the nursery of the Pennsylvania Hospital in this 1930 photo. The country has reached a historic tipping point -- with minority births constituting more than half of all births, the U.S. Census Bureau reported this month. (AP)

A nurse holds a baby in the nursery of the Pennsylvania Hospital in this 1930 photo. The country has reached a historic tipping point -- with minority births constituting more than half of all births, the U.S. Census Bureau reported this month. (AP)

News last week from the U.S. Census Bureau: white babies are now a minority of newborns in the USA. First time ever. It’s just a hair under 50 percent, but to demographers, it’s a milestone. A reminder of how dramatically the population of this country is changing and will continue to change in this century.

Does it matter? Well, in the abstract, many say no. We are what we are. Let’s go. But how the shift unfolds – politically, economically, culturally – is a big deal.

This hour, On Point: we’re looking into the changing face of America.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Marcelo Suarez-Orozco, co-director of Immigration studies at New York University.

Vesla Weaver, a professor of political science at the University of Virginia. She’s the co-author of Creating a New Racial Order: How Immigration, Multiracialism, Genomics, and the Young Can Remake Race in America.

From Tom’s Reading List

New York Times “After years of speculation, estimates and projections, the Census Bureau has made it official: White births are no longer a majority in the United States.”

Pew Research Center “Hispanics are more than a quarter of the nation’s youngest residents, according to the new population estimates, accounting for 26.3% of the population younger than age 1.”

Slate “For the first time in history, more than half of American children under the age of 1 are members of a minority group, according to figures released Wednesday by the Census Bureau. Everyone is familiar with the federal government’s classification of race and ethnicity—white, black or African-American, Hispanic, Asian, American Indian or Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander. Why did we settle on these particular groupings?”

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