We are living in turbulent times.
Every generation believes they will be called tide-changers, described in the pages of history as heroes. Still, it’s hard not to feel like “change is gonna come” as the discourse surrounding things like Black Lives Matter and immigration become painfully woven into the fabric of our American Experience.
Ronald Takaki begs us to admit that multiculturalism is an American reality impossible to escape. Takaki quoted the Time Magazine 1990 cover story, “America’s Changing Colors”, which said that by 2056 most Americans would trace their lineage to Africa, Asia, the Hispanic World, the Pacific Islands, Arabia–almost anywhere by white Europe.
Here’s an update to that figure: last year, the US Census Bureau released a report projecting that by year 2045, whites folks will be in the minority.
Numbers like that incite fear.
“The deeper significance of America’s becoming a majority nonwhite society is what it means to the national psyche, to individuals sense of themselves and their nation — their idea of what it is to be American.”, reads the Time article.
The wounds of our American Past that have been allowed to fester have formed a crusty scab that have allowed (some of) us to be blissfully ignorant of the infection just beneath the surface of our American Skin. Recent events have scratched into that wound, revealing something we may not have wanted to see. Perhaps part of what has been revealed is a deep-seated discomfort with multiculturalism.
Why do you think some white Americans are concerned about the changing landscape of American race?
What does a majority nonwhite society mean to the national psyche–the idea of what it is to be American?