Source: Washington File
On July 14, 2006 Washington File reported, "The United States Census Bureau announced this year that as many as one-third of U.S. residents now claim 'minority' heritage, reflecting the continuing evolution of an American national identity that transcends ethnic and religious boundaries. It also raises some interesting questions. Who is a minority, after all? What will 'minority' mean in a future America increasingly populated by individuals like the young man who described himself as 'an Amer-Asian kid who celebrates Hanukkah with his Jewish stepfather, prays to Buddha with his Buddhist Momma, and then goes to midnight Mass with his Christian father and waits for Santa Claus to come down the chimney?' Even as Hispanics, Blacks, Asians and American Indian/Alaska natives account for over four-fifths of recent U.S. population growth, the influence that these and other American cultures have on one another continues to develop, in a process as old as the nation itself... The Census Bureau reports that Hispanics accounted for nearly half of U.S. population growth during the period July 1, 2004–July 1, 2005. The Hispanic population increased by 1.3 million (3.3 percent) during that period, 800,000 by natural increase and 500,000 through immigration. The Asian American population increased by 421,000 (3 percent) during that period, while Black, American Indian, Alaska native, Native Hawaiian and Pacific islander populations also increased. As of July 2005, the Census Bureau reports a total U.S. population of 296.4 million. Of this total, Hispanics comprise 42.7 million Americans while blacks, including both African Americans and more recently arrived Africans and blacks of Caribbean origin, total 39.7 million. The Census identified 14.4 million Asians, 4.5 million American Indians and Alaska natives and nearly 1 million native Hawaiians and Pacific islanders."