Friday, April 13, 2007

Race, and progress

Finally, some good news on the racial front here in America. In the same week that grizzled clown Don Imus was booted from his job for being a racist asshole (I remember him being on the radio when I was a little kid in the 70s--who knew he was even still alive, let alone still broadcasting his delightful program, in 2007?) we have this headline from the AP:

Interracial Marriages Surge Across U.S.

By DAVID CRARY AP National Writer

April 13,2007 NEW YORK -- The charisma king of the 2008 presidential field. The world's best golfer. The captain of the New York Yankees. Besides superstardom, Barack Obama, Tiger Woods and Derek Jeter have another common bond: Each is the child of an interracial marriage. For most of U.S. history, in most communities, such unions were taboo.

It was only 40 years ago -- on June 12, 1967 -- that the U.S. Supreme Court knocked down a Virginia statute barring whites from marrying nonwhites. The decision also overturned similar bans in 15 other states.

Since that landmark Loving v. Virginia ruling, the number of interracial marriages has soared; for example, black-white marriages increased from 65,000 in 1970 to 422,000 in 2005, according to Census Bureau figures. Factoring in all racial combinations, Stanford University sociologist Michael Rosenfeld calculates that more than 7 percent of America's 59 million married couples in 2005 were interracial, compared to less than 2 percent in 1970.

Coupled with a steady flow of immigrants from all parts of the world, the surge of interracial marriages and multiracial children is producing a 21st century America more diverse than ever, with the potential to become less stratified by race.

The Peanut says that is a good thing.

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