Society

Martin Luther King Jr. Surfs the Demographic Tide

MLK in 1964

Martin Luther King, Jr. 1964 (Public domain)

Today we honor one of the greatest human rights heroes of our time, someone whose life work is testament to the mountain-moving power of nonviolence.  I could go on all day about his legacy, but since this is a future-focused blog, let’s look forwards: what’s the relevance of Dr. King’s work in the United States of the Future?

I’ll have more to say about this on Wednesday, but right now I want to pass on a piece of future news that gives some essential context.  And that context is demographics.  While browsing this article on the recent US Census results, one statistic in particular jumped off the page at me:

…racial and ethnic minorities for the first time made up more than half of all children born in the country, totaling 50.4 percent.

All the children born in the US in the last couple of years are, in a very literal sense, the future of this country.  And that future is increasingly a black, brown and Asian one.  How do we fit the good Reverend’s teachings into this intriguing population paradigm?  What else is different about civil rights in 1968 and 2050?  These are not easy questions to answer, but there are a couple places we can start looking.  Join me on Wednesday as we dip into some interesting ideas about race, ethnicity, and opportunity in the world of tomorrow.

And please take a moment now to imagine just how different the world would be, without Dr. King’s vision and hard work.

What do you think of the future of race and US demographics?  Add your thoughts in the comment box – opinions of non-Americans are welcome too!

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