Our nation’s failure to publicly and candidly grapple with the changing demographics only postpones a necessary conversation about what kind of country we will choose to become. For sure, change is coming. By 2050—possibly sooner—the nation’s combined populations of racial and ethnic Americans (blacks, Latinos, Asian-Pacific Islanders, and Native Americans) will outnumber white Americans.
In recognizing the inevitability of population shifts, Progress 2050, a project of the Center for American Progress that develops new ideas for an increasingly diverse America, has spent the past year working on issues related to race and demography. One of the core goals of this work is to increase awareness of the changing demographics of our nation and to spark optimistic conversations among progressive Americans about the benefits of the increased participation in our society by racial and ethnic groups. The nation’s future is bright because of the role and contributions that all citizens contribute to our democracy.
Indeed, the people who believe the same—that America’s diversity is the strength of our republic—have an obligation to speak up and out in its defense. Failure to do so will concede too much of the public debate to the reactionary right and its futile fight to stop the forward march of progress.
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