The Changing Demographics of “Real Americans”


Although I know business is paying far more attention to the national changing demographics than politicos or even church leaders, some of the stuff is really fascinating. In a recent article in the New Republic, Timothy Noah referred to a number of fascinating demographic statistics well worth sharing. And, yeah, the statistics are fairly reputable. Of course there’s one demographic that really, really needs to change: the face of Republicans. More and more they’re just old white men.

Gay Marriage
More Americans now support gay marriage than oppose it.

 In a Pew poll conducted in October, 49 percent of respondents said they favored allowing gays and lesbians to marry legally and 40 percent were opposed. Four years earlier, in August 2008, the numbers were just about reversed: 39 percent in favor and 52 percent opposed.

A strong majority of younger Americans now support same-sex marriage. In a Gallup Poll conducted December 2012, 73 percent of people between 18 and 29 years old said they favored it, while only 39 percent of people older than 65 did.

Respondents appear increasingly inclined to say they are personally opposed to same-sex marriage, rather than say it should be illegal.

Rural Voters
Rural voters currently represent less than 20% of the population. In a report byReuters of data from the 2010 US census, a total of 80.7 percent of Americans lived in urban areas, up from 79 percent in 2000. Conversely, 19.3 percent of the U.S. population lived in rural areas in 2010, down from 21 percent in 2000.

At the same time, the population of urban areas grew by 12.1 percent, much faster than the country’s growth rate of 9.7 percent from 2000 to 2010.

Church Attendance
In spite of the bad economy over the past few years, church attendance has not increased. That’s in spite of the fact that bad times are usually when the church has good times and the attendance rises. But, the percentage of Americans who attend churchat least weekly has remained stuck at 40% since 2007.

Gun ownership
The percentage of gun owners represent has gone down significantly over the last 25 years. Since approximately 1985, gun ownership has gone down nearly a full one-third. It now stands at 21%. Less than 5% of the population represents doing any hunting in 2011. Somewhere between one-third and one-half of all gun owners in the entire world now reside in the US.

There are a lot of fading traditions out there. And Grover Norquist’s tax pledge has lost its juju.

Flickr photo: avg__milano

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