"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." -- Theodore Roosevelt

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Sunday, June 6, 2010

Interracial Marriages on the Rise in U.S.

CNN is citing a Pew poll showing that interracial marriages are on the rise within the United States. (h/t Volokh Conspiracy)

From the article by Stephanie Chen:

"Asian. White. Black. Hispanic. Do race and ethnicity matter when it comes to marriage?

"Apparently, race is mattering less these days, say researchers at the Pew Research Center, who report that nearly one out of seven new marriages in the U.S. is interracial or interethnic. The report released Friday, which interviewed couples married for less than a year, found racial lines are blurring as more people choose to marry outside their race.

"'From what we can tell, this is the highest [percentage of interracial marriage] it has ever been,' said Jeffrey Passel, a senior demographer for the Pew Research Center.

"He said interracial marriages have soared since the 1980s. About 6.8 percent of newly married couples reported marrying outside their race or ethnicity in 1980. That figure jumped to about 14.6 percent in the Pew report released this week, which surveyed newlyweds in 2008."

I love that opening line... because, as we all know, there's only five races in the US: Asian, White, Black, Hispanic, and Other. Forget those Chinese-Americans, Japanese-Americans, Mexican-Americans, Irish-Americans, Italian-Americans, Jewish Americans, Argentinian-Americans... they're all just a part of one big arbitrary skin color.

The article continues:

"[S]tudies show that support for interracial marriages is stronger than in the past, especially among the Millennial generation. Among 18- to 29-year-olds, about 85 percent accept interracial marriages, according to a Pew study published in February. Scholars say interracial marriages are important to examine because they can be a barometer for race relations and cultural assimilation.


"The African-American population also saw increases in interracial marriage, with the number of blacks participating in such marriages roughly tripling since 1980, the study said. About 16 percent of African-Americans overall are in an interracial marriage, but researchers point out a gender difference: It's more common for black men to marry outside of their race than for black women.

"The gender difference was the reverse in the Asian population surveyed. Twice as many newlywed Asian women, about 40 percent, were married outside their race, compared with Asian men, at about 20 percent."

While the article was generally positive though banal, I found this snippet rather amusing.

"Yagan [Sam Yagan founder of OkCupid.com an internet dating site] attributes the increase in interracial relationships to the Internet, which makes it easier to connect with someone of a different race. People who live in a community where race is an issue can meet someone of another race more privately, than say, instead of having to start their relationship in a public setting.

"'You don't have to worry about what your friends are going to think,' he said. 'You can build the early parts of the relationship.'"

Hmm... so even though interracial marriages are at an all time high in the US, and apparently rising, we're to believe that a significant percentage of these are from people meeting secretly online because of their "community where race is an issue?" I think that when these two people have their wedding announcement, the community's going to figure it out...

I know what the article meant, but it seems overly romantic (not to mention ridiculous) to attribute the rise of interracial marriages to people covertly chatting online within some community straight out of the movie "Footloose." I mean, Chen cites the stat that 85% of 18-29 year-olds approve of mixed marriages and then arbitrarily throws that in at the end? Interesting.

Being involved in a mixed-marriage myself, I see the story itself as encouraging. However, if you really want to depress yourself read through the comments of the CNN article. Like cinematic zombies rising up out of the graveyards, White Supremacists lumber out of isolation to spout their nonsense-- like the guaranteed extinction of blond, blue-eyed women in the near future, a common obsession of White Supremest groups. It's important to remember that one loud-mouthed commenter speaks only for himself and not an entire segment of a population.

Some have tried to spin college educations being directly responsible for the upswing of interracial marriages. "'If I'm a college graduate, I am going to marry another graduate,' Cherlin [Andrew Cherlin, professor of public policy and sociology at Johns Hopkins University] said. 'It's of secondary importance if that person is my race.'"

While college education may be a factor in a roundabout way, it seems more likely that simple exposure to people of varying races results in higher rates of interracial marriages. This is hardly unusual and can be seen time and again throughout history. When two groups intermingle freely, they intermarry as well. This is a matter of historical record going back as far (if not further) as Ancient Egypt as the Ethiopians intermarried with the Lower Kingdom Egyptians following Egypt's political weakening at the end of the Bronze Age. Racially diverse colleges intermingle people from different local communities, states, countries. It is hardly surprising that college students show higher incidents of interracial marriage-- and probably has very little to do with the education itself as Cherlin states.

It just seems interesting to me that interracial marriages are on the rise, even as MSNBC et al. are claiming the growing tide of racism-- as witnessed by any criticism of Obama. The missing examples of overt racism, along with these sort of studies, say otherwise.

Results of Pew Study here.


  1. Oh God save us from the white supremacists, what a waste of space they are. Preserving some Aryan bloodline is the least of our worries. As someone who's been known to date her share of nonwhites, I find this study interesting, too, and agree that it does seem to contradict the leftist "rise of RAAAAACISTS" rhetoric. Hard to reconcile a surge in interracial marriages with rampant racism and white supremacists taking over the country . . . unless, perhaps, you "explain it away" as people being tricked by not being able to see someone online. Who, anyway, in this day and age doesn't use Skype or post pics/vids or use a webcam to chat with someone they find interesting? I can't imagine with all the advances in technology that anyone is online chatting away without knowing the race of the person to whom they are speaking. Sure, some people still post pics of people else or pretend to be someone they're not, but you have to be an idiot to fall for that for very long. Not caring what race they are, I get.

  2. White Supremacists are politically dead in this country, which is why I used the zombie image. That's not to say that racism is dead in the US by any means...

    But White Supremacists are not dead in Europe by any means. In some countries, Belgium from a few years back comes immediately to mind, their parties can garner enough support to be political players within the govt. That's one of the reasons I stress caution when dealing with anti-Muslim political forces coming out of Europe.

  3. Oh, and by any means I should use the phrase "by any means" as much as possible... Three or four times per comment at least. By any means...

  4. heh, by any means you should use "by any means."

    And I do see what you are saying about the anti-Muslim political forces coming out of Europe, that's starting here, too. I have to say that I do understand it and don't think it's all racist. In some ways it seems a natural backlash with the pendulum swinging further than it needs to the other way in a frantic effort to restore balance. It happens. The danger, of course, is if the other extreme takes over. That's not likely here, though I suspect that if we do succeed in unseating King Idiot, it'll be a while before another leftie sits in the WH. We're more likely to swing pretty far right, then settle somewhere close to center. In the meantime, the real racists will certainly rise up and spout their hate crap, sensing a chance, but I don't believe we are a nation of racists. We're a nation reacting, expect to swing hard right before we correct course.

  5. btw, have you disabled emailed comments to lure us back to your page? ;)

  6. The kind of white supremacy I'm talking about in Europe is very close to the white supremacy in the US, both in overall ideology and language. They promote the same psuedo-intellectual drivel, about how white Europeans have done everything good and worthy in world history etc., that the US supremacists spout here. The targets are different (Black Americans tend to be a target in America-- go figure), although both tend to hate and envy the Jews a great deal.

    I've read their junk ad nauseum (know your enemy), but like I've said before, I will not link to them, so take my word on this or look them up yourself. The difference is that the political parties that spout this (or have very recently evolved from groups that spout that garbage) can be real political players in Europe. In the US, White Supremacists are nothing more than an embarrassment at this point.

    Remember, very few countries in Europe have a two-party system like the US. In multi-party systems there's no real need to cultivate the big tent theory of political appeal. Many political parties grow themselves around an ideological cause, rather than a broadly appealing ideology which is required in the US for a party to be a player.

    Racism is not a Left/Right issue. So as political pendulums swing left and right, racism, and especially White Supremacy, does not necessarily wax and wane. The more racist people I've met personally tend to be far-Left Dems, not hard-Right GOP.

    I mean, look at the neo-Nazis... While the media and common logic is that they're a right-wing orginization, ideologically, these people are on the Left. They want a strong centralized government to oppress the rights of racial minorities and people with whom they disagree. This doesn't require less government. It requires more. Incidentally, this is a significant reason as to why PETA and other agenda-driven groups gravitate to the Left, so that a big, central government can arbitrarily enact their agendas. Also the money in Fed grants...

    "btw, have you disabled emailed comments to lure us back to your page? ;)"

    I hardly ever check my e-mail, so I just don't bother. And yeah, look how much traffic I get with my clever lure. LOL

  7. True, I've noticed much more racism on the far (and not so far) left--witness their unabashed antisemitism and random racist comments that just trip off the tongue with no thought (gee, shouldn't BO have a gun in his pants like a real black guy? Yeah, Maher, that's not racist, not at all.).

    I don't see the allure of a multi-party system, it seems even less useful than ours and this is yet another reason to avoid it here methinks. That's all we need are a bunch of crackpots getting together and fueling each others' anti-American, anti-white Christian, anti- oh, wait! . . . .

    in re: of email: I meant for me, me, me! LOL

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