Census: Minorities Won't Be in Minority Much Longer

The shift in America's demographics continues, and it is reflected in birth rates. Analysis of Census Bureau data by the Pew Research Center shows that for the most recent year on record, 2013, white births outnumbered minority births by less than 3,000, out of nearly 4 million total births. That continues a trend that has seen white birth rates decline, with minority births expected to eventually overtake white births.

The data comes as no surprise to demographers. "We've said this for 25 years, it's been obvious," says Dr. Steve Murdock, Rice University professor and former director of the U.S. Census Bureau. "A friend of mine likes to say when he speaks to a non-Hispanic white crowd, realize that we are a disappearing breed, because we are not reproducing ourselves, period."

Indeed, research has shown that whites are dying off faster than giving birth, while Hispanic births have exploded in recent decades. "If you look at national projections or look at state projections, you will see that non-Hispanic whites are a group that is not reproducing itself, and hasn't been for a good 20 years or so," says Murdock. "They're not having enough births to replace themselves and their mate."

The Census Bureau projects that by 2043, no racial or ethnic group will make up more than half of the U.S. population. That demographic trend also holds true here in Texas, and Murdock predicts it has major implications for the state. "If we don't change the socioeconomics that go with our demographics, we're going to be a poorer and less competitive state in the future than we are today," he says. "We need to address the need to ensure that all Texans and all Americans have the skills and education they need to be competitive."

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