Race in America: 5 Take-Aways From the 2010 Census
1. The geography of race
The minority population, driven by a 43 percent increase in Hispanics, grew in all four regions of the country. But it grew most in the West. Nearly half of the West's population of 33.9 million is now minority. That is largely due to California, which also has the largest minority population of any state: 22.3 million. Nevada's minority population grew faster in the past 10 years than any other state, increasing by 78 percent. Almost half of Nevada's population is now minority. In the South, 40 percent of the population is minority; in the Midwest it's 22 percent; and in the Northeast, 31 percent is minority.
2. Minorities in the majority
Four states and the District of Columbia have populations that are more than 50 percent minority. Hawaii has the largest proportion of minorities: 77 percent. California and New Mexico are 60 percent minority, Texas is 55 percent minority, and the District of Columbia is 65 percent minority. Three of the states -- California, New Mexico and Hawaii -- were all majority-minority a decade ago. In majority-black Washington, D.C., the black population continued to shrink, down to 65 percent from 72 percent in 2000.
3. The whitest states
States with the highest non-Hispanic white population are Maine and Vermont, both 94 percent white. They are followed by West Virginia at 93 percent and New Hampshire at 92 percent. However, in all four states, the increase in the minority population far outpaced gains in the white population. In the three New England states, the minority population increased by more than 50 percent, while growth of the white population was virtually stagnant. Minorities grew by 68 percent in New Hampshire, 65 percent in Maine and 52 percent in Vermont. Gains in the white populations in those three states were 2 percent, 3 percent and 1 percent, respectively. West Virginia's minority population grew by 29 percent, while its white population grew by 1 percent.
4. The suburbanization of African-Americans
Overall, the black population in America grew by 11 percent. Blacks continued their move back to the South and out of big cities. More than half of the nation's largest cities with big non-Hispanic black populations showed losses, more than a census has ever recorded before, said William Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution in Washington. In New York City, for the first time since the Civil War, the number of blacks declined, Frey told AOL News. The city lost 100,859 of its black residents, a 5 percent drop. In Washington, D.C., African-Americans continued their move to suburbs, although at a slower pace than in the 2000 census. There were 39,000 fewer blacks in the nation's capital, a decline of 11 percent. In Detroit, more than 184,000 blacks moved out, a loss of 24 percent.
The population of children under age 18 is much more diverse than that of adults. While almost half of the nation's 74 million children -- 46.5 percent -- are minority, minorities make up only about 33 percent of the adult population. Latinos account for almost a quarter of the nation's children, 23 percent. The majority of the children in California and Texas are Hispanic. More significantly, the growth in the population of children is almost all due to new minorities. The numbers of Hispanic and Asian children are increasing, while the number of white children is declining. There are 9.8 percent fewer white children in the nation since the 2000 census, compared with a 38.8 percent increase in Hispanics and 31 percent increase in Asians. (The number of non-Hispanic black children has also decreased by 2.3 percent.)
These counts provide a glimpse into the future. As the white and black populations age, the void will be filled by Hispanics and Asians. "They are going to keep us from being a nation in decline demographically," Frey said. "Look at Japan. At some point, 35 percent of their population is going to be over 65. If we tried to go forward with white fertility rates, this country would look like that." Census officials have projected that the Hispanic population could overtake the white population within three decades.