AMERICAN INDICATORS CULTURE
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From the 1960s until today, African American unemployment has been 2.0 to 2.5 times the white unemployment rate. In 2012, the black unemployment rate was 14 percent, 2.1 times what it was for whites and higher than the average national unemployment rate of 13.1 percent during the recession.
Federal spending on programs serving the countrys children fell by $35 billion, or 16 percent adjusted for inflation, since 2010.
American Interest - More than 50 percent of American adults are single, and 31 millionroughly one out of every seven adultslive alone. This is a significant increase from 1950, when only 22 percent of American adults were single. It corresponds with an increase in the average age of marriage by five years to 28 for men and 26 for women. Put another way, people who live alone make up 28 percent of all U.S. households, which makes them more numerous than any other domestic unit, including the nuclear family.
@Harpers - Percentage change since 1970 in the marriage rate of U.S. women between the ages of thirty and fifty: -20
Couples who tie the knot multiple times face tough odds: second marriages fail 67 percent of the time, while third marriages fail 73 percent of the time
Percentage of black U.S. children under the age of five who live in poverty: 43
Federal spending on programs serving the countrys children fell by $35 billion, or 16 percent adjusted for inflation, since 2010.
While 68% of blacks say the American justice system is biased against blacks, 25% of whites agree.
Eighty-six percent of blacks disapproved of the Zimmerman verdict while 51 percent of whites thought it was okay. 22 percent of Democrats approved, while 65 percent of Republicans approved.
Data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture show that meat eating across the country fell from the 2004 high point of 184 pounds per person to 171 pounds in 2011. Early estimates for 2012 project a further reduction in American meat eating to 166 pounds, making for a 10 percent drop over the eight-year period.- Earth Policy Institute
A Vanity Fair poll finds that 73% of conservatives and 75% of liberals either make buying local food a priority or do it when it is convenient. Another issue that the media ignores, but people find important. We suspect the results would be even better if local food was idenitified better.
Nearly two-thirds of the 10.2 million unauthorized adult immigrants in the United States have lived in this country for at least 10 years and nearly half are parents of minor children, according to new estimates by the Pew Hispanic Center.
Television is Americas No. 1 pastime, with an average of four hours and 39 minutes consumed by every person every day.- NYT
On a given day, 26% of Facebook users like a friends status, 22% comment on a friends status and 15% update their own status.The average user has 229 friends, of which 22% are from high school, 12% are co-workers, 9% are from college and 3% they only met once. In 2008, the average user was 33. Two years later, the average user was 38, five years older. Fifty-two percent visit Facebook daily, beating out Twitter (36%), Myspace (7%) and LinkedIn (6%).
Religion & alternatives
Nationwide, the Catholic Church lost about 5 percent of its members from 2000-10. The Episcopal Church's membership dropped by 15.7 percent in the same period, and decreases in most mainline Protestant groups were similar
For nearly two-thirds of American seniors, Social Security provides more than half of their income. For more than one-third of American seniors, it provides more than 90 percent of their income. And for one-quarter of American seniors, Social Security is their sole source of income.
Very religious white Americans continue to be one of the most Republican segments of the U.S. population: 62% identify with or lean toward the Republican Party, more than twice the number who identify as Democrats or lean Democratic. This Republican skew is reversed among nonreligious whites, who are more likely to affiliate with the Democratic Party by a 17-percentage-point margin.
Andrew Santella, Slate - One in seven adults changes churches each year, and another one in six attends a handful of churches on a rotating basis, according to the Barna Group, a marketing research firm that serves churches. Church shopping isn't a matter of merely changing congregations: A survey by the Pew Forum on Religious and Public Life last year indicated that 44 percent of American adults have left their first religious affiliation for another.
More than one out of five adults have a different religion than their spouse or partner. Number of different sects reporting household ecumenism;
Non-denominational Christian 32%
Jehovah's Witnesses 30%
No religion 28%
Roman Catholic 23%
[Graduate Center of the City University of New York 2003]
EMPLOYMENT BY GENDER - NPR
Women now earn about 60 percent of university degrees in America and Europe.
Fewer Americans aged 18 to 29 hold full-time jobs now than did so a year ago, according to Gallup. This decline holds true for young adults regardless of whether they have a college degree.
Mother Jones - Membership in religious organizations had gone steadily up over the past century, from roughly 40% of the population in 1900 to 70% today. Lack of belief was more common and more public in 1900 than it is today, even if it was called "freethinking" or "skepticism" or some related term.Conservative Protestant denominations have also been growing very steadily over the past century. It wasn't a sudden boom that burst onto the public scene when Jerry Falwell became famous. The Pentecostal movement started up in 1906 and it's been growing ever since. Ditto for evangelical sects, which have grown steadily from perhaps a third of all Protestant denominations in 1900 to something like 60% of them today. If you put these two things together, here's what pops out: A century ago, something like 10% of the country belonged to a conservative Protestant denomination. That's grown steadily ever since, and today it's around 30%
The percentage of people who changed residences between 2010 and 2011 - 11.6 percent - was the lowest recorded rate since the Census began collecting statistics on the movement of people in the United States in 1948,.
28% of rural residents - or about 19 million Americans - still lack access to broadband Internet service.
For the first time, reports the Census Bureau, non-white babies are the majority of new borns.
Among American children, the multiracial population has increased almost 50 percent, to 4.2 million, since 2000, making it the fastest growing youth group in the country.
ENTROPY UPDATE: TEACHING AMERICA TO KILL
CREATED BY JOHN GRAHAM-CUMMING
NY Daily News - According to a new study from Trinity College, 15% of Americans don't associate with a religious denomination. . . . The study shows that the religion-free nones are most prominent in adults age 18-29, with 22% of the age bracket claiming to be without religion. The percentage of nones is expected to grow as the youth replaces an older pious generation. Researchers predict that one-quarter of Americans may be without a religion within 20 years
WHERE TO FIND THE SEVEN DEADLY SINS
The American Time Use Survey asks thousands of American residents to recall every minute of a day. Here is a chart on how people over age 15 spent their time in 2008 broken down by hour, age and other factors.
TOP RATED TV SHOWS
Pew Research - When asked whether they would rather live in a neighborhood with more McDonald's or more Starbucks, Americans manage to typecast themselves by just about every demographic and ideological characteristic under the sun; overall, more Americans choose McDonalds (43%) over Starbucks (35%), but the split is more pronounced -- and rather predictable -- when analyzed demographically. Liberals want coffee; conservatives choose burgers. Younger Americans vote for caffeine; older Americans decidedly pick the value menu. When one controls for all the factors tested, the variables that do the most to explain whether someone chooses Starbucks over McDonalds are: having a college degree, having a high income, being a liberal, being a Westerner and being a woman.
New Scientist - A study of racial discrimination in the US workplace suggests that mixed-race Americans are discriminated against just as much as black people in terms of salary. . . An analysis of more than 3 million respondents revealed the average pay was $15.74 per hour for people of mixed race, $17.39 for black people and $22.04 for white people. This was despite the fact that 18 per cent of mixed-race people had college degrees, compared with 11 per cent of black people and 28 per cent of white people. The wage gap remained even after Fairlie controlled for factors such as age and socioeconomic conditions.
NY Times - Today, fewer than half of all high school students have had sex: 47.8 percent as of 2007, according to the National Youth Risk Behavior Survey, down from 54.1 percent in 1991. . . A 2002 report from the Department of Health and Human Services found that 30 percent of 15- to 17-year-old girls had experienced sex, down from 38 percent in 1995. During the same period, the percentage of sexually experienced boys in that age group dropped to 31 percent from 43 percent. The rates also went down among younger teenagers. In 1995, about 20 percent said they had had sex before age 15, but by 2002 those numbers had dropped to 13 percent of girls and 15 percent of boys.
Pew Research Center - Americans are settling down: Only 13% of the U.S. population changed residences between 2006 and 2007, the lowest share since the Census Bureau began to publish statistics on this topic in the late 1940s. A new national survey by the Pew Research Center explores the social and economic dimensions of geographic mobility in the United States. Its main findings:
More than six-in-ten adults (63%) have moved to a new community at least once in their lives, while 37% have never left their hometowns.
- Most adults (57%) have not lived outside their current home state in the U.S. At the opposite end of the spectrum, 15% have lived in four or more states.
- More than one-in-five U.S.-born adults (23%) say the place they consider home in their heart isn't where they're living now. And among those who have lived in two or more communities, fully 38% say they aren't living in their "heart home" now.
- The most common reasons people identify some other place as home are that it's where they were born or raised (26%); where they lived the longest (18%); or where their family is from (15%). Just 4% say it's where they went to high school.
- Blacks are more likely than whites to say the place they're living now isn't their "heart home." Among adults who have lived in at least two communities, 54% of blacks and just 35% of whites say they identify most with a former hometown. Hispanics fall in the middle; 40% say they identify most with a former hometown.
-. Just four-in-ten of those who identify someplace else as home want to go back and live there. But about half stay in close touch with family and friends back home, either by visiting several times a year (45%), or by phoning (53%) or emailing (46%) at least once a week.
- The Midwest is the most rooted region: 46% of adult residents there say they have spent their entire life in one community. The least rooted is the West, where only 30% of adult residents have stayed in their hometown. Residents of the South (36%) and East (38%) fall in between.
- Three-quarters of college graduates (77%) have changed communities at least once, compared with just over half (56%) of those with a high school diploma or less. College graduates also are more likely to have lived in multiple states.
- Asked why they have not left their hometown, "stayers" cite major reasons such as the tug of family ties (74%), the desire to remain where they grew up (69%) and their belief that their communities are good places to raise children (59%). Fewer than half (40%) say a major reason for staying put is a job or business opportunities.
- The most frequently cited major reason that movers give for choosing their current community is job or business opportunities (44%). Somewhat smaller shares of movers say they relocated to where they now live because their new community is a good place to raise children (36%) or because they have family ties there (35%).
- Westerners are more likely than residents of other regions to choose amenities-climate and recreation-as major reasons for living where they do. This is true for those who were born there and never left, as well as for those who have moved there.
- Levels of community satisfaction do not appear to be correlated with people's past mobility patterns. Equal shares of movers and stayers-about six-in-ten-rate their current community as good or excellent.
- Four-in-ten Americans say they are very likely or somewhat likely to move within five years. Among those especially likely to say so are younger people, unmarried Americans and the foreign born.
Live Science - According to a study published in the journal Psychological Science. . . researchers compared responses from teens in 1975 and 2006, asking questions about their qualities and abilities. The study found that today''s kids consider themselves to be far more intelligent and capable than their 1970s counterparts, and more likely to report being "completely satisfied" with themselves. . . The new study confirms polls and surveys that find most Americans generally happy with themselves. In one of the largest surveys ever taken of American youth, a 1998 poll surveyed more than a quarter of a million grade-school students; 93 percent of teens said they feel good about themselves.
UNDOCUMENTED IMMIGRATION SLOWS
Hispanic Market Weekly - New research from the Pew Hispanic Center indicates that the flow of undocumented immigrants into the U.S. has slowed since 2004. It also found that the number of undocumented immigrants entering the country fell below that of the number of immigrants who are legal, permanent residents. The Pew Center estimates that the size of the undocumented population is 11.9 million as of March 2008, an increase of 40 percent from 8.4 million in 2000. However, that's down from an estimated 12.4 million in 2007.
Leonard Doyle, Independent UK The United States of America is becoming less united by the day. A 30-year gap now exists in the average life expectancy between Mississippi, in the Deep South, and Connecticut, in prosperous New England. Huge disparities have also opened up in income, health and education depending on where people live in the US, according to a report published yesterday.
The American Human Development Index has applied to the US an aid agency approach to measuring well-being - more familiar to observers of the Third World - with shocking results. The US finds itself ranked 42nd in global life expectancy and 34th in survival of infants to age. Suicide and murder are among the top 15 causes of death and although the US is home to just 5 per cent of the global population it accounts for 24 per cent of the world's prisoners.
Despite an almost cult-like devotion to the belief that unfettered free enterprise is the best way to lift Americans out of poverty, the report points to a rigged system that does little to lessen inequalities.
"The report shows that although America is one of the richest nations in the world, it is woefully behind when it comes to providing opportunity and choices to all Americans to build a better life," the authors said.
Some of its more shocking findings reveal that, in parts of Texas, the percentage of adults who pass through high school has not improved since the 1970s.
Asian-American males have the best quality of life and black Americans the lowest, with a staggering 50-year life expectancy gap between the two groups.
Sharon Johnson, WeNews - The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 60 percent of married mothers are now in the work force, 4 percentage points lower than in 1997. The rate of married mothers of infants who work fell 6 percentage points to 53 percent. With mothers representing about two-thirds of adult women those figures help explain why the United States is one of only two industrialized countries--the other is Japan--out of 23 where women's work force participation rate fell between 1994 and 2006, according to data from the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Reversal of Trend
From the 1950s through the 1990s the percentage of U.S. women in the paid work force steadily increased. But that trend has begun to reverse and today 3.3 million fewer women are working than would be if the trend had continued.
While a spate of news reports has explained the trend as women preferring to stay home or "opting out," an array of women's policy groups disagree. The real explanation, they contend, is a workplace that fails women on some basic interlocking fronts: inflexible scheduling requirements, job discrimination, lack of child care, lack of parental leave, lack of sick leave.
Researchers for the San Francisco-based Center for WorkLife Law found 13,000 cases of discrimination that showed that mothers were 79 percent less likely to be hired and 100 percent less likely to be promoted because they are held to a higher standard than non-mothers in their companies. . .
The United States, Swaziland, Liberia, Lesotho and Papua New Guinea are the only countries among 173 surveyed in 2007 by the Institute for Health and Social Policy at Montreal's McGill University that don't guarantee paid maternity leave to new mothers.
The Family Medical Leave Act, which provides 12 weeks of job-protected leave to new parents or adoptive parents or caregivers of elderly relatives, only applies to firms with 50 workers or more, said Williams. "This disproportionately affects women who earn low wages . . . or work for small companies."
Then there's the cost of child care, which ran between $4,000 and $20,000 a year per child in 2001, according to a study from the Children's Defense Fund in Washington. . .
NEWSWEEK - The most recent comprehensive study on the emotional state of those with kids shows us that the term "bundle of joy" may not be the most accurate way to describe our offspring. "Parents experience lower levels of emotional well-being, less frequent positive emotions and more frequent negative emotions than their childless peers," says Florida State University's Robin Simon, a sociology professor who's conducted several recent parenting studies, the most thorough of which came out in 2005 and looked at data gathered from 13,000 Americans by the National Survey of Families and Households. "In fact, no group of parents-married, single, step or even empty nest-reported significantly greater emotional well-being than people who never had children. It's such a counterintuitive finding because we have these cultural beliefs that children are the key to happiness and a healthy life, and they're not.". . .
A key study by University of Wisconsin-Madison's Sara McLanahan and Julia Adams, conducted some 20 years ago, found that parenthood was perceived as significantly more stressful in the 1970s than in the 1950s; the researchers attribute part of that change to major shifts in employment patterns. The majority of American parents now work outside the home, have less support from extended family and face a deteriorating education and health-care system, so raising children has not only become more complicated-it has become more expensive. Today the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that it costs anywhere from $134,370 to $237,520 to raise a child from birth to the age of 17-and that's not counting school or college tuition. No wonder parents are feeling a little blue.
Societal ills aside, perhaps we also expect too much from the promise of parenting. The National Marriage Project's 2006 "State of Our Unions" report says that parents have significantly lower marital satisfaction than nonparents because they experienced more single and child-free years than previous generations. Twenty-five years ago, women married around the age of 20, and men at 23. Today both sexes are marrying four to five years later. This means the experience of raising kids is now competing with highs in a parent's past, like career wins ("I got a raise!") or a carefree social life ("God, this is a great martini!"). Shuttling cranky kids to school or dashing to work with spit-up on your favorite sweater doesn't skew as romantic.
AMERICA'S FAITH BASES
AP - People are keeping their cars and trucks longer as quality improves and the uncertain economy makes new purchases less appealing, according to a study released this week by automotive consulting firm R.L. Polk & Co. Polk said the median age of cars on U.S. roads was 9.2 years in 2007. That ties the previous year's record high. In 2007, 41.3 percent of all cars were 11 years or older, compared with 40.9 percent the year before. . . Purchases of new cars fell 3 percent in the U.S. in 2007 as a combination of factors, including high gas prices and the housing crisis, weighed on consumers and led many to put off buying new cars.
NY TIMES - The men gathered in a new golf clubhouse here a couple of weeks ago circled the problem from every angle, like caddies lining up a shot out of the rough.
The total number of people who play [golf] has declined or remained flat each year since 2000, dropping to about 26 million from 30 million, according to the National Golf Foundation and the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association. More troubling to golf boosters, the number of people who play 25 times a year or more fell to 4.6 million in 2005 from 6.9 million in 2000, a loss of about a third.
The industry now counts its core players as those who golf eight or more times a year. That number, too, has fallen, but more slowly: to 15 million in 2006 from 17.7 million in 2000, according to the National Golf Foundation.
PEW RESEARCH - Most young singles in America do not describe themselves as actively looking for romantic partners. Even those who are seeking relationships are not dating frequently. About half (49%) had been on no more than one date in the previous three months.
These findings emerge from a national survey conducted last fall by the Pew Internet & American Life Project. The survey found that dating in America is, indeed, affected by online matchmaking activity. But in analyzing our findings, we discovered another story: Large numbers of single Americans are not actively looking for relationships and even significant numbers of those looking for partners are not that active on the dating scene.
While the majority of American adults (56% or 113 million people) are not in the dating market (they are married or living as married), the number of potential romance-seekers is still huge. Fully 43% of adults (87 million people) say they are single.
About a quarter of unmarried Americans (26% or about 23 million adults) say they are in committed romantic relationships. Single men are more likely than single women to report being so situated. Yet among the uncommitted, relatively few say they are in the market for relationships.
Among all singles, just 16% say they are currently looking for a romantic partner. That amounts to 7% of the adult population. Some 55% of singles report no active interest in seeking a romantic partner. This is especially true for women, for those who have been widowed or divorced, and for older singles. Yet even among the youngest adults, the zest for romance is somewhat muted: 38% of singles ages 18-29 say they are not currently looking for a romantic partner, compared to 22% in that age cohort who are looking for partners.
No doubt many reasons underlie the relatively small size of the active dating population. One suggested by this survey's findings is the type of community in which singles live.
When singles who are actively looking for partners were asked about the dating scene where they live, a majority of those actively seeking dates (55%) said it was difficult to meet people. Only 43% said it was easy, while 2% said they didn't know.
Moreover, when asked to describe the dating possibilities where they live, a plurality, 47%, said there were very few single people in their town they would be interested in dating. Another 41% said there were lots of single people in their town that seemed interesting but 10% said they didn't know much about the local singles scene.
57% of city dwellers who are looking for dates say there is plenty of dating potential in their communities compared with 38% of date-seeking suburbanites and only 21% of date seekers residing in rural settings.
Whatever the reasons, few of today's seeking singles describe themselves as active on the dating scene. Asked how many dates they had been on in the past three months, singles who said they were in the dating market reported the following:
- 36% said they had been on no dates in the previous three months.
- 13% had been one date.
- 22% had been on 2-4 dates
- 25% had been on 5 or more dates.
In our sample of internet users, we found that those who are in serious long-term relationships or marriage are equally as likely to have met through friends or in a work or school setting. Still, bars remain a relatively popular place for long-term relationships to begin. Here is a rundown from the survey of how the internet users in marriages or long-term relationships first encountered each other.
- 38% met at work or school.
- 34% met through family or friends.
- 13% met at a nightclub, bar, café, or other social gathering
- 3% met through the internet.
- 2% met at church.
- 1% met by chance, such as on the street.
- 1% met because they lived in the same neighborhood.
- 1% met at a recreational facility like a gym.
- 1% met on a blind date or through a dating service.
How often blacks say they face frequent discrimination in:
Applying for jobs: 67 percent
Renting an apartment or buying a house: 65 percent
Dining out or shopping: 50 percent
Applying to college: 43 percent
How well blacks say they get along with whites:
Very well: 20 percent
Pretty well: 49 percent
Not too well: 20 percent
Not at all well: 4 percent
Percentage of blacks who'd like to see:
More neighborhood integration: 62 percent (versus 44 percent of whites)
More school integration: 56 percent (versus 23 percent of whites)
ABOUT 82% of Americans in 2007 told Gallup interviewers that they identified with a Christian religion. That includes 51% who said they were Protestant, 5% who were "other Christian," 23% Roman Catholic, and 3% who named another Christian faith, including 2% Mormon. Because 11% said they had no religious identity at all, and another 2% didn't answer, these results suggest that well more than 9 out of 10 Americans who identify with a religion are Christian in one way or the other.
Sixty-two percent of Americans in Gallup's latest poll, conducted in December, say they are members of a "church or synagogue," a question Gallup has been asking since 1937. In the 1937 Gallup Poll, 73% of Americans said they were church members. That number stayed in the 70% range in polls conducted in the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s. By the 1970s, however, the number began to slip below 70% in some polls, although as recently as 1999, 70% said they were church members. Since 2002, self-reported church membership has been between 63% and 65%.
BLACK CHILDREN LOSING GROUND COMPARED TO PARENTS
JULIA ISAACS, BROOKINGS INSTITUTION - Median family incomes have risen for both black and white families, but less so for black families. Moreover, . . . analysis reveals a significant difference in the extent to which parents are able to pass their economic advantages onto their children. Whereas children of white middle-income parents tend to exceed their parents in income, a majority of black children of middle-income parents fall below their parents in income and economic status. These findings are provided in more detail below.
Median family income for both black and white families has increased over the last 30 years, but income gaps still persist.
- Between 1974 and 2004, white and black men in their 30s experienced a decline in income, with the largest decline among black men. However, median family incomes for both racial groups increased, because of large increases in women's incomes. Income growth was particularly high for white women.
- The lack of income growth for black men combined with low marriage rates in the black population has had a negative impact on trends in family income for black families.
- There was no progress in reducing the gap in family income between blacks and whites. In 2004, median family income of blacks ages 30 to 39 was only 58 percent that of white families in the same age group ($35,000 for blacks compared to $60,000 for whites).
- Black children grow up in families with much lower income than white children.
- White children are more likely to surpass parents' income than black children at a similar point in the income distribution.
- Only 31 percent of black children born to parents in the middle of the income distribution have family income greater than their parents, compared to 68 percent of white children from the same income bracket.
PARENTS TAKING MORE ACTIVE ROLE IN CHILDREN'S LIVES
CENSUS - Parents are taking a more active role in the lives of their children than they did 10 years ago, according to data by the U.S. Census Bureau. For example, in 2004, 47 percent of teenagers had restrictions on what they watched on television, when they watched, and for how long, up from 40 percent in 1994
According to this latest look into the lives of children, about 68 percent of 3- to 5-year-olds had limits on their television viewing, an increase from 54 percent in 1994. More children 6 to 11 found they, too, were living with restrictions on television: 71 percent in 2004 compared with 60 percent 10 years earlier.
In 2004, 53 percent of children younger than 6 ate breakfast with their parents every day. That compared with only 22 percent of teenagers who ate breakfast with their parents each morning. Those percentages increased at the dinner table, where 78 percent of children younger than 6 ate dinner nightly with their parents, compared with 57 percent of teenagers.
Seventy-four percent of kids younger than 6 were praised by their mother or father three or more times a day. The same was true for 54 percent of children 6 to 11 and 40 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds.
Children 1 to 2 were read to an average of 7.8 times in the previous week of the survey (Table 9), while children 3 to 5 were read to an average of 6.8 times in the previous week.
About half of all children 1 to 5 are read to seven or more times a week; 53 percent for 1- to 2-year-olds, and 51 percent for 3- to 5-year olds.
The percentage of children participating in lessons, such as music, dance, language, computers, or religion, went up for 6- to 11-year olds, from 24 percent in 1994 to 33 percent in 2004.
From 1994 to 2004, the percentage of children who changed schools went down for 6- to 11-year-olds, from 30 percent to 26 percent. For 12- to 17-year-olds, the percentage of children who changed schools dropped from 52 percent to 42 percent.
From 1994 to 2004, the number of children 12 to 17 who repeated a grade declined from 16 percent to 11 percent. For children 6 to 11, the rate remained the same at 7 percent.
NY TIMES - More than half the Americans who might have celebrated their 25th wedding anniversaries since 2000 were divorced, separated or widowed before reaching that milestone, according to the latest census survey, released yesterday. For the first time at least since World War II, women and men who married in the late 1970s had a less than even chance of still being married 25 years later. . .
About 80 percent of first marriages that took place in the late 1950s lasted at least 15 years. Among people who married in the late 1980s for the first time, however, only 61 percent of the men and 57 percent of the women were married 15 years later. Among currently married women, non-Hispanic whites were the only group in which a majority had marked their 15th anniversary.
NON-THEISTS AROUND THE WORLD
Nbr Country Non-Theists 1 Sweden 46-85% 2 Vietnam 81% 3 Denmark 43-80% 4 Norway 31-72% 5 Japan 64-65% 6 Czech Republic 54-61% 7 Finland 28-60% 8 France 43-54% 9 South Korea 30%-52% 10 Estonia 49% 11 Germany 41-49% 12 Russia 24-48% 13 Hungary 32-46% 14 Netherlands 39-44% 15 Britain 31-44% 16 Belgium 42-43% 17 Bulgaria 34-40% 18 Slovenia 35-38% 19 Israel 15-37% 20 Canada 19-30% 21 Latvia 20-29% 22 Slovakia 10-28% 23 Switzerland 17-27% 24 Austria 18-26% 25 Australia 24-25% 26 Taiwan 24% 27 Spain 15-24% 28 Iceland 16-23% 29 New Zealand 20-22% 30 Ukraine 20% 31 Belarus 17% 32 Greece 16% 33 North Korea 15% ( ? ) 34 Italy 6-15% 35 Armenia 14% 36 China 8-14% ( ? ) 37 Lithuania 13% 38 Singapore 13% 39 Uruguay 12% 40 Kazakhstan 11-12% 41 Estonia 11% 42 Mongolia 9% 43 Portugal 4-9% 44 United States 3-9% 45 Albania 8% 46 Argentina 4-8% 47 Kyrgyzstan 7% 48 Dominican Rep. 7% 49 Cuba 7% ( ? ) 50 Croatia 7% Source: Cambridge Companion to Atheism
MOTHERS SPEND MORE TIME WITH KIDS THAN 40 YEARS AGO
DES MOINES REGISTER - According to a University of Maryland study, contemporary mothers spend more time tending directly to their kids than mothers did 40 years ago, even though more women work outside the home today. In 1965, for example, mothers spent 10.2 hours per week focused directly on kids (feeding them, playing with them, etc.). Now they spend more than 14 hours a week, the study reported.
The findings are included in the book "Changing Rhythms of American Family Life." Using time-diary data from 40 years of surveys of American parents, researchers explored changes in how American families spend their time. The most notable change in those years was women entering the work force in unprecedented numbers. But that doesn't mean children have lost time with their mothers.
Today's women sacrifice housework, free time and sleep, and they "multitask."
They should find comfort in the findings, "but they won't," predicted Suzanne Bianchi, the study's lead author and a native Iowan. "No matter what, they still feel guilty."
Why? They hold themselves to high standards, and they feel nostalgia about the past - nostalgia that isn't quite accurate, she said.
A PROFILE OF THE YOUNG
SHARON JAYSON, USA TODAY - The views of young people today on politics, social attitudes and life goals are far different from their baby boomer parents', a national survey of 18- to 25-year-olds suggests.
More than two-thirds (67%) believe immigrants strengthen American society; a quarter favor increasing legal immigration. . .
While young people are split over gay marriage (47% in favor, 46% opposed), those over 25 are not: 64% oppose same-sex marriage; 30% favor it. . .
The findings that this generation's top life goals are to be rich (81%) and famous (51%) contrast with a 1967 study of college freshmen in which 85.8% said it was essential to develop "a meaningful philosophy of life," while 41.9% thought it essential to be "very well off financially.". . .
Among other findings:
48% identify more with Democrats; 35% with Republicans.
36% have a tattoo and 30% a body piercing in a place other than an ear lobe; 25% have dyed their hair a non-traditional color.
PEW RESEARCH - About half say they sent or received a text message over the phone in the past day, approximately double the proportion of those ages 26-40.
A majority of Gen Nexters have used [a] social networking sites, and more than four-in-ten have created a personal profile.
Generation Next is less critical of government regulation of business but also less critical of business itself. And they are the most likely of any generation to support privatization of the Social Security system.
They maintain close contact with parents and family. Roughly eight-in-ten say they talked to their parents in the past day. Nearly three-in-four see their parents at least once a week, and half say they see their parents daily. One reason: money. About three-quarters of Gen Nexters say their parents have helped them financially in the past year.
One-in-five members of Generation Next say they have no religious affiliation or are atheist or agnostic, nearly double the proportion of young people who said that in the late 1980s. And just 4% of Gen Nexters say people in their generation view becoming more spiritual as their most important goal in life.
Voter turnout among young people increased significantly between 2000 and 2004, interrupting a decades-long decline in turnout among the young. Nonetheless, most members of Generation Next feel removed from the political process. Only about four-in-ten agree with the statement: "It's my duty as a citizen to always vote."
When asked to name someone they admire, they are twice as likely as older Americans to name a family member, teacher, or mentor. Moreover, roughly twice as many young people say they most admire an entertainer rather than a political leader.
AP - The young adults of Generation Next are more optimistic, more tolerant and more likely Democratic voters than their predecessors, according to a new study. The group's tilt toward the Democratic Party is far different from the previous younger generation, known as Generation X, which grew up during the Reagan administration of the 1980s and was more inclined to support Republicans. . . Forty-eight percent of young adults age 18 to 25 said they were Democrats or leaned that direction while 35 percent said they were Republican or leaned that way in 2006, according to Pew polling.
The study also found a great acceptance for same-sex marriage. Forty-seven percent of those age 18 to 25 favor allowing gay men and lesbians to marry while 30 percent of those 26 and older favor same-sex marriage. . .
Asked about their generation, most say getting rich and being famous are top goals.
The study found that the young adults:
- Are less inclined to vote than older generations, though young voter turnout was up significantly in 2004. About 54 percent of those from 18 to 24 voted in 2004, and 74 percent of those 25 and over voted, Keeter said.
- Have more liberal views than other generations on questions of race, homosexuality and immigration.
- Read the newspaper and follow the news on TV and radio less than those in older generations.
- Keep in close touch with their parents, both for advice and for financial help.
CHARLES STORCH, CHICAGO TRIBUNE - [A] report by the Johns Hopkins University Center for Civil Society Studies found that U.S. charities had 9.4 million paid workers and another 4.7 million "full-time equivalent" volunteers, for a total workforce of 14.1 million as of mid-2004, the latest date for such information. That paid employment represented 7.1 percent of the country's total. . . The report also found that employment at non-profits grew by an average 5.1 percent in the U.S. from 2002 to 2004.
OLDER WOMEN FACE AMPLIFIED RETIREMENT PROBLEMS
JONATHAN PETERSON, LA TIMES - To a degree, the retirement security of women is jeopardized by the same trends affecting men, such as cutbacks in corporate pensions. But experts say the threat to women is amplified by a confluence of factors, including:
- Higher overall rates of divorce and singlehood. Record numbers of women are heading toward later life without the backup of a partner's savings and income. Unmarried, older women have higher poverty rates than their male counterparts and much higher poverty rates than married women, government data show.
- Interrupted working years. Although baby boom women generally have more education and work skills than their mothers, many quit jobs or work part time to care for children or ailing relatives. Such efforts may be cherished by family members, but they slash retirement benefits.
- Long lives. At age 65, women are expected to live an average of three years longer than men. This greater longevity magnifies several risks to retirement security, including raising the danger that a woman will outlast her savings or incur costly medical bills without help from a spouse.
In addition to these factors, women overall still earn less than men and have less in the way of retirement benefits for old age.
"The bottom line is that women are subject to a double whammy: They need more but have less," said Alicia H. Munnell, director of the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College and a former member of the White House Council of Economic Advisors. "This problem is widespread - even many baby boom women with college degrees face the same issues. "
CENSUS BUREAU - Adults and teens will spend nearly five months next year watching television, surfing the Internet, reading daily newspapers and listening to personal music devices according to the Census Bureau's Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2007.
People will spend 65 days in front of the TV, 41 days listening to radio and a little over a week on the Internet in 2007. Adults will spend about a week reading a daily newspaper and teens and adults will spend another week listening to recorded music.
- Among adults, 97 million Internet users sought news online in 2005,
- 13 million created a blog.
- The majority (79 percent) of freshmen in 1970 had an important personal objective of "developing a meaningful philosophy of life." By 2005, the majority of freshmen (75 percent) said their primary objective was "being very well off financially."
- Americans drank 23.2 gallons of bottled water per capita in 2004. Consumption was only 2.7 gallons of bottled water in 1980.
- U.S. airports screened 738.6 million passengers in 2005, confiscating 9.4 million lighters.
WHAT AMERICANS ARE UP TO
SAM ROBERTS, NY TIMES - Americans drank more than 23 gallons of
bottled water per person in 2004 - about 10 times as much as in 1980.
We consumed more than twice as much high fructose corn syrup per
person as in 1980 and remained the fattest inhabitants of the planet,
although Mexicans, Australians, Greeks, New Zealanders and Britons are
not too far behind.
At the same time, Americans spent more of their lives than ever about
eight-and-a-half hours a day watching television, using computers,
listening to the radio, going to the movies or reading.
This eclectic portrait of the American people is drawn from the 1,376
tables in the Census Bureau's 2007 Statistical Abstract . . .
For the first time, the abstract quantifies same-sex sexual contacts
(6 percent of men and 11.2 percent of women say they have had them)
and learning disabilities (among population groups, American Indians
were most likely to have been told that they have them).
The abstract reveals that the floor space in new private one-family
homes has expanded to 2,227 square feet in 2005 from 1,905 square feet
in 1990. . . Taller, too. More than 24 percent of Americans in their
70s are shorter than 5-foot-6. Only 10 percent of people in their 20s are.
Adolescents and adults now spend, on average, more than 64 days a year
watching television, 41 days listening to the radio and a little over
a week using the Internet. . .
Meanwhile, the national divorce rate, 3.7 divorces per 1,000 people,
was the lowest since 1970. . .
From 2000 to 2005, the number of manufacturing jobs declined nearly 18
percent. . . Employment in textile mills fell by 42 percent
One thing Americans produce more of is solid waste 4.4 pounds per
day, up from 3.7 pounds in 1980.
College freshmen described their primary personal objectives: In 1970,
79 percent said their goal was developing a meaningful philosophy of
life. By 2005, 75 percent said their primary objective was to be
financially very well off. . .
As recently as 1980, only 12 percent of doctors were women; by 2004,
27 percent were.
AMERICANS HAVE FEWER FRIENDS IN WHOM TO CONFIDE
JANET KORNBLUM, USA TODAY - Americans have a third fewer close friends and confidants than just two decades ago - a sign that people may be living lonelier, more isolated lives than in the past. In 1985, the average American had three people in whom to confide matters that were important to them, says a study in today's American Sociological Review. In 2004, that number dropped to two, and one in four had no close confidants at all. . . The study finds fewer contacts are from clubs and neighbors; people are relying more on family. . .
The percentage of people who confide only in family increased from 57% to 80%, and the number who depend totally on a spouse is up from 5% to 9%, the study found. "If something happens to that spouse or partner, you may have lost your safety net," Smith-Lovin says.
The study is based on surveys of 1,531 people in 1985 and 1,467 in 2004, part of the General Social Survey by the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago.
WHAT AMERICANS ARE UP TO
SAM ROBERTS, NY TIMES - Americans drank more than 23 gallons of bottled water per person in 2004 - about 10 times as much as in 1980. We consumed more than twice as much high fructose corn syrup per person as in 1980 and remained the fattest inhabitants of the planet, although Mexicans, Australians, Greeks, New Zealanders and Britons are not too far behind.
At the same time, Americans spent more of their lives than ever - about eight-and-a-half hours a day - watching television, using computers, listening to the radio, going to the movies or reading.
This eclectic portrait of the American people is drawn from the 1,376 tables in the Census Bureau's 2007 Statistical Abstract . . .
For the first time, the abstract quantifies same-sex sexual contacts (6 percent of men and 11.2 percent of women say they have had them) and learning disabilities (among population groups, American Indians were most likely to have been told that they have them).
The abstract reveals that the floor space in new private one-family homes has expanded to 2,227 square feet in 2005 from 1,905 square feet in 1990. . . Taller, too. More than 24 percent of Americans in their 70s are shorter than 5-foot-6. Only 10 percent of people in their 20s are.
Adolescents and adults now spend, on average, more than 64 days a year watching television, 41 days listening to the radio and a little over a week using the Internet. . .
Meanwhile, the national divorce rate, 3.7 divorces per 1,000 people, was the lowest since 1970. . .
From 2000 to 2005, the number of manufacturing jobs declined nearly 18 percent. . . Employment in textile mills fell by 42 percent
One thing Americans produce more of is solid waste - 4.4 pounds per day, up from 3.7 pounds in 1980.
College freshmen described their primary personal objectives: In 1970, 79 percent said their goal was developing a meaningful philosophy of life. By 2005, 75 percent said their primary objective was to be financially very well off. . .
As recently as 1980, only 12 percent of doctors were women; by 2004, 27 percent were.
AMERICANS PREFER LIVING ROOM SCREEN TO NATIONAL PARKS
JON HURDLE, REUTERS - Americans are less interested in spending time in natural surroundings like national parks because they are spending more time watching television, playing video games and surfing the Internet, according to a study for The Nature Conservancy, [which] found per-capita visits to national parks have been declining for years.
National park visitation data starting in 1930 peaked in 1987 at 1.2 visits per person per year. But by 2003 it had declined by about 25 percent to 0.9 visits per person per year, said Oliver Pergams, an ecologist at the University of Illinois who analyzed the data for the study. . .
Researchers tested more than two dozen possible explanations for the trend and found that 98 percent of the drop in national park visits was explained by video games, movie rentals, going out to movies, Internet use and rising fuel prices.
Since 1999, the Postal Service has removed more than 42,000 collection boxes. As of last year, about 295,000 mailboxes remained in use. Along with mailboxes, the Postal Service is facing a drop in jobs. In the past five years, it has reduced staff through attrition by more than 80,000 employees. The current postal work force stands at about 700,000.
ROBERT PEAR, NY TIMES - Despite the surge of women into the work force, mothers are spending at least as much time with their children today as they did 40 years ago, and the amount of child care and housework performed by fathers has sharply increased, researchers say in a new study, based on analysis of thousands of personal diaries. . .
The researchers found that "women still do twice as much housework and child care as men" in two-parent families. But they said that total hours of work by mothers and fathers were roughly equal, when they counted paid and unpaid work. Using this measure, the researchers found "remarkable gender equality in total workloads," averaging nearly 65 hours a week. The findings are set forth in a new book, "Changing Rhythms of American Family Life," published by the Russell Sage Foundation and the American Sociological Association. The research builds on work that Ms. Bianchi did in 16 years as a demographer at the Census Bureau.
WOMAN-OWNED FIRMS GROWING AT TWICE THE RATE OF COMPANIES OVERALL
US NEWS & WORLD REPORT - Over the past nine years, the number of woman-owned firms grew at twice the rate of companies overall, according to a recent analysis of the latest census data by the Center for Women's Business Research. . . The number of companies whose ownership is at least 51 percent female now stands at 7.7 million, up from 5.4 million in 1997. Firms owned by women now account for some 30 percent of the nation's 25.8 million companies.
FOX NEWS - A new survey by Parks Associates shows that teenagers are less likely to communicate via e-mail than any other demographic. According to the study, less than one-fifth of the 13-17-year-olds surveyed profess to using e-mail to communicate with friends, compared to 40 percent of adults aged 25-54. The study shows that instant messaging is the dominant form of communication for teenagers, with one-third of teens relying on the messaging system, compared to only 11 percent of adults.
JOSH GETLIN, LA TIMES - The average amount of time that U.S. households had a television set on each day during the yearlong 2005-06 TV season that ended last week increased by three minutes from the year before, to a record of eight hours and 14 minutes, the report said. Viewers ages 12 to 17 watched 3% more television during a full day than they had the year before, Nielsen said. Younger children, ages 2 to 11, increased their viewing by 4%. . . In 1995-96, for example, the average household was tuned in to television for an average of seven hours and 15 minutes per day; that figure grew by nearly an hour during the 2005-06 survey period.
CNN - 36 percent of Americans age 18 to 29 [have] at least one tattoo, according to a survey.
NEWSWATCH 50 - The buying power of Hispanics in the United States will exceed that of blacks in 2007, a university study indicated Friday. Hispanics' buying power will draw even with African-Americans, at $780 billion this year and shoot ahead in 2007, the study by the University of Georgia's Selig Center for Economic Growth found. Hispanic buying power will be $863.1 billion in 2007, up 8.1 percent from 2006, whereas black buying power will reach $847 billion in 2007, up 6 percent, the study said. "Hispanic economic clout will likely reach nearly $1.2 trillion in 2011," said center director Jeff Humphreys. "But African-Americans' buying power will continue to be much stronger than Hispanics' in most states because Hispanics are much more geographically concentrated than African-Americans," Humphreys said. California alone accounts for 27 percent of all Hispanic buying power in the U.S. Hispanics surpassed blacks as the nation's largest minority group in 2001.
MORE THAN HALF OF AMERICA LIVES IN COASTAL COUNTIES
JOEL K. BOURNE, JR. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC - Every week more than 3,300 new residents land in southern California, while another 4,800 hit Florida's shores. Every day 1,500 new homes rise along the U.S. coastline. More than half the nation's population now lives in coastal counties, which amount to only 17 percent of the land in the lower 48. In 2003 coastal watersheds generated over six trillion dollars, more than half the national economy, making them among our most valuable assets. Yet two blue-ribbon bipartisan panels-the Pew Oceans Commission and the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy, convened by the Pew Trusts and the U.S. Congress, respectively-recently issued disturbing reports that found the coasts are being battered by an array of pollution and population pressures. Former Secretary of Energy Adm. James D. Watkins-not exactly a wild-eyed environmentalist-chaired the U.S. commission and laid it out for Congress: "Our failure to properly manage the human activities that affect the nation's oceans, coasts, and Great Lakes is compromising their ecological integrity . . . threatening human health, and putting our future at risk."
MOST POPULAR SPORTS EVENTS
Percent of all powerboats that are registered in the eight Great Lakes states: 49% [Boat US]
- Six percent of the country lives in deep rural counties
- One percent of the population consist of farmers and ranchers.
- Farmland is disappearing at the rate of two million acres a year.
- There are four states where a majority of the population lives in rural places: Maine, Mississippi, Vermont andWest Virginia.
- The latino population is growing faster in rural areas and is responsible for 25% of all rural population growth.
- Rural household income is about 25% less than that of metropolitan households.
- Consumer demand for organic food is growing about 25% a year and now accounts for 2% of the market.
- More than 3100 farmer' markets operate in the US, a 79% increase since 1994.
- There are more than 1,000 community supported agricultural programs with the largest number in California, Wisconsin and New York.
- Less than 10% of rural employment is farm related.
- There are 2.1 million farmers, down from 6,8 million in 1935.
- One third of all farms are located in metropolitan areas.
- 90% of farm household income comes from off-farm sources.
- More than two thirds of England's famers rely on tourist income of some kind to maintain their way of life. Ten percent take in overnight guests.
- One third of farms in Vermont are engaged in agri-tourism.
- 244 of the nation's 250 poorest counties are rural.
[National Trust for Historic Preservation: Rural Development Trends & Opportunities for Historic Preservation]
AMERICANS STILL NOT TURNED ON BY SOCCER
STEVE JAMES, REUTERS - Despite a doubling of television ratings for the first-round matches this month, before the U.S. squad failed miserably, soccer still ranks below televised poker tournaments in a land where baseball, basketball and American football rule. ABC-TV's average rating of 2.5 for the first eight matches it aired represents barely 8 million viewers in a nation of just under 300 million. Only 3.9 million Americans watched the 2002 World Cup final, which had an audience of 1.1 billion worldwide. By comparison, nearly 91 million viewers watched this year's Super Bowl, the glitzy climax to the season for North America's home-grown form of football. Nearly 39 million watched the Academy Awards, Hollywood's big night, in March and 36 million tuned in for May's finale of "American Idol," a television talent show. . . A poll by the Global Market Insite market research service found that only 11 percent of Americans surveyed were "definitely" interested in the World Cup, compared with 45 percent of respondents world-wide.
RATE OF VOLUNTEERING
1. Utah: 48.0%
2. Nebraska: 42.8%
3. Minnesota: 40.7%
4. Iowa: 39.2%
5. Alaska: 38.9%
6. Wyoming: 38.8%
6. South Dakota: 38.8%
8. Kansas: 38.6%
9. Vermont: 38.1%
10. Montana: 37.9%
11. Wisconsin: 37.0%
12. Washington: 36.8%
13. North Dakota: 36.5%
14. Idaho: 35.5%
15. Oregon: 33.6%
16. Maine: 33.2%
17. Colorado: 32.8%
18. Michigan: 32.1%
19. New Hampshire: 32.0%
20. Missouri: 31.9%
21. Connecticut: 30.8%
21. Pennsylvania: 30.8%
21. District of Columbia: 30.8%
24. Ohio: 30.7%
25. Maryland: 30.3%
26. Oklahoma: 30.0%
27. Kentucky: 29.8%
28. Illinois: 29.7%
29. Indiana: 29.5%
30. North Carolina: 29.1%
31. Virginia: 29.0%
32. Alabama: 28.9%
33. New Mexico: 28.5%
34. Texas: 28.3%
35. South Carolina: 28.0%
36. Massachusetts: 27.0%
37. Delaware: 26.7%
38. New Jersey: 26.5%
39. Mississippi: 26.4%
40. California: 26.1%
41. Georgia: 25.9%
41. Tennessee: 25.9%
43. Arkansas: 25.6%
44. Hawaii: 25.4%
45. Rhode Island: 24.9%
45. Arizona: 24.9%
47. West Virginia: 24.6%
48. Florida: 24.1%
49. Louisiana: 22.7%
50. New York: 21.3%
51. Nevada: 18.8%
[Corporation for National and Community Service
MIDDLE EAST NEWS - The most recently seen statistics on the Jewish population of the US place it at about 5.2 million, and state that it declined by about 5% from what it was 10 years previous to that. At 7 million, with a +6% annual growth rate, the Muslim population is fast outpacing the Jewish one in the US
HAYA EL NASSER, USA TODAY - Home buyers with names such as Rodriguez, Garcia and Hernandez bumped Brown, Miller and Davis down the list of most common buyers' names in 2005, reflecting Hispanics' rapid advance into the middle class. A Data Quick Information Systems analysis of deeds and county assessment data shows a dramatic rise in the number of Hispanic and Asian home buyers since 2000. Smith and Johnson remain the two most popular, but Rodriguez has replaced Brown in third. Four Hispanic names are in the top 10, compared with two in 2000. Hispanic surnames made up 14.6% of all home buyers' names, up from 10.3% five years earlier. . . Asians also are bigger players. Nguyen, a common Vietnamese name, moved from 23rd to 14th. In California, almost 28% of home buyers are Hispanic, and the five most common surnames are Hispanic. Only one was in the top five in 2000.
SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION
RICK ROSS, CULT NEWS - Scientology is ranked lower than Islam as one of the most, unpopular religions in America. Even Islam, despite Muslim terrorists and radicals making headlines, is seen better. . . CBS found that amongst Americans 45% said they have an unfavorable view of Islam, a rise from 36% in February reports Daily Times in Pakistan. Only 19% of had a favorable view of Islam, compared to 30% in 2002. But only 8% of the American public view Scientology favorably . . . 58% had a favorable impression of Protestantism, 48% of Catholicism, 47% of the Jewish religion, 31% of Christian fundamentalist religions and 20% of the Mormon religion.
UPI - A USA Today/Gallup Poll says nearly half of the Americans it surveyed feel the United States should mind its own business internationally. . . The newspaper said public opinion now is reminiscent of the Vietnam War. In 1964, only 20 percent said the United States should "mind its own business" but by 1972, the percentage had nearly doubled.
ELWIN GREEN, PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE - The report, "Survey of Business Owners: Black-Owned Firms: 2002," says that between 1997 and 2002, the number of black-owned businesses in the United States rose 45 percent to 1.2 million, while the combined revenue increased 25 percent to $88.8 billion. . . New York City had more black-owned firms than any other city at 98,076, followed by Chicago (39,424), Los Angeles (25,958), Houston (21,226), and Detroit (19,530). Among states, New York had the greatest number of black-owned firms with 129,324, followed by California (112,873), Florida (102,079), Georgia (90,461) , and Texas (88,769). These five states accounted for about 44 percent of all black-owned businesses in the United States. Pennsylvania had 24,757.
FOUR OUT OF TEN CITY KIDS HAVE SEX BY AGE 14
BILL HUTCHINSON NY DAILY NEWS - A new survey shows four out of 10 city kids say they have had intercourse before age 14, and have engaged in oral and even anal sex by 17. "This study makes clear that urban young adults engage in a variety of sexual behavior beyond vaginal intercourse," said Dr. Danielle Ompad, who authored the survey for The New York Academy of Medicine. . .
The study, published in The Archives of Sexual Behavior, examined the sexual habits of 2,311 Baltimore youths. But Ompad said, "I don't think other cities would be too different." The study showed that 42% had engaged in vaginal intercourse by the age of 14. About 14% of kids said they had sex before the age of 13, a 9% jump from a similar survey by the Centers for Disease Control in 1995.
- Annual immigrants as a percent of U.S. population
- Number of immigrants who would have been allowed to enter in 2000 based on the 1900 standard: 4.73 million
- Number actually allowed in 2000: 849 thousand.
- INS estimate of annual increase in undocumented immigrant population: 500 thousand
- Total number of legal and undocumented immigrants entering in 2000: 1.35 million.
- Additional immigrants who would have been permitted to enter in 2000 if 1900 standard had been used: 3.38 million.
- Total number of undocumented immigrants in 2000: 7 million.
- Number of years it would have taken, using 1900 immigration standards, to make all these immigrants legal: 2 years and 2 1/2 days.
BLACKS DECLINING IN NEW YORK CITY FOR FIRST TIME SINCE THE CIVIL WAR
SAM ROBERTS, NY TIMES - An accelerating exodus of American-born blacks, coupled with slight declines in birthrates and a slowing influx of Caribbean and African immigrants, have produced a decline in New York City's black population for the first time since the draft riots during the Civil War, according to preliminary census estimates. An analysis of the latest figures, which show the city with 30,000 fewer black residents in 2004 than in 2000, also revealed stark contrasts in the migration patterns of blacks and whites.
While white New Yorkers are still more likely than blacks to leave the city, they are also more likely to relocate to the nearby suburbs (which is where half the whites move) or elsewhere in the Northeast, or to scatter to other cities and retirement communities across the country. Moreover, New York remains a magnet for whites from most other states. In contrast, 7 in 10 black people who are moving leave the region altogether. And, unlike black migrants from Chicago, Philadelphia and Detroit, most of them go to the South, especially to Florida, the Carolinas and Georgia. The rest move to states like California, Ohio, Illinois and Michigan with large black populations.
CENSUS JORN BARGER of Robot Wisdom has produced a remarkable collection of maps showing the density by county of religions ranging from Catholic to Quaker. This map shows shows the density of religious adherents as reported by 149 religious bodies. Note the large number of counties (two shades of tan) where less than half the population belongs to a religious group.
MOVIES TANKED WORLDWIDE LAST YEAR
AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE - Hollywood movie ticket sales around the world dropped by 7.9 percent last year to 23 billion dollars, with the US box office accounting for nearly 40 percent of the haul, a study showed. Movie ticket receipts in North America dipped by six percent in 2005 to nine billion dollars, according to a study by the ratings statistics firm Nielsen Entertainment/NRG that comes as movie-goers increasingly stay out of cinemas. . . The total number of films released in the United States increased by 5.6 percent from 2004. . . Most movie-goers in 2005 went out to catch family films, with movies rated PG-13, meaning that children under 13 must be accompanied by an adult, accounting for 85 percent of the most watched films in 2005.
WOMENS ENEWS - Census Bureau statistics released Jan. 25 indicate that women started businesses at double the national rate between 1997 and 2002. The number of female-owned companies increased by 20 percent during this five-year period. By 2002, 6.5 million, or 30 percent, of all non-farm businesses in the U.S. were owned by women. The majority of these businesses were single-person enterprises but the number of mid-size and large companies owned by women also rose.
WOMENS ENEWS - Only 5 of the 119 athletic directors of Division 1A universities and colleges in the United States are women, the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport at the University of Central Florida reported Jan. 25.
MEXICAN IMMIGRANTS COME TO BE WITH FAMILY, GET BETTER PAYING JOBS
RACHEL URANGA, LOS ANGELES DAILY NEWS - Most Mexicans do not cross the border because they are destitute and penniless, but because they have family in the U.S. and want better-paying jobs, a study found.
The report by the Washington, D.C.-based Pew Hispanic Center found that many recent immigrants had held steady jobs in their home country and were not simply unemployed or farm laborers who pursued life in the United States as their salvation. . .
The study, which surveyed 4,836 immigrants in seven cities including Los Angeles, New York, Fresno and Atlanta, said newer immigrants have more schooling than those who arrived 15 or more years ago. And 38 percent of those in the U.S. for less than six months were high school graduates or had some junior college or even university experience, compared with 27 percent of those arriving 15 years ago.
And once those immigrants have crossed the border - regardless of their immigration status or ability to speak English - they quickly snap up jobs in factories and fields, at construction sites and in retail stores. "It's significant that the immigration status has little to do with the likelihood of employment in the United States," Kochhar said. . .
About 54 percent of those who answered the 12-page questionnaire currently lived with a relative and about 80 percent knew a relative here before arriving. . . About 45 percent found jobs by talking with friends or family. Poor English skills or the lack of U.S. government identification, such as a green card or a driver's license, had little influence over whether they found a job.
IMMIGRATION HITS RECORD
USA TODAY - Despite tougher border scrutiny after 9/11, a total of 7.9 million immigrants have come to the USA since 2000, more than in any other five-year period in the nation's history, figures released Monday show. Almost half, or 3.7 million, entered illegally, according to an analysis of Census data by the Center for Immigration Studies, a Washington, D.C., group that advocates controlling the flow of legal and illegal immigrants. . .
The nation's immigrant population hit a record 35.2 million in March 2005, 2½ times the number at the peak of the last great immigration wave of 1910, says Steven Camarota, author of the report. Immigrants make up 12.1% of the U.S. population, compared with 14.7% in 1910, the report says. The analysis shows that 31% of adult immigrants have not completed high school. A third lack health insurance.
JUDITH WARNER, NY TIMES - Last month, a poll found that nearly 70 percent of Americans said they believed that people are ruder now than they were 20 or 30 years ago, and that children are among the worst offenders. (As annoyances, they tied with obnoxious cellphone users.)
In 2002, only 9 percent of adults were able to say that the children they saw in public were "respectful toward adults," according to surveys done then by Public Agenda, a nonpartisan and nonprofit public opinion research group. In 2004, more than one in three teachers told Public Agenda pollsters they had seriously considered leaving their profession or knew a colleague who had left because of "intolerable" student behavior. . .
BUSINESS WEEK - Spanish-language radio is at an all-time high, with more than 678 stations across the country, according to Arbitron Inc. "That number could double in two years," said Mike Henry, a Denver-based radio consultant. In 2000, the U.S. census counted 35.6 million Hispanics and that number has grown to 41.3 million. Estimates of Hispanic purchasing power now top $630 billion, up nearly threefold from $233 billion in 1990, and it's expected to reach $926 billion in 2007, according to Denver marketing firm Heinrich Hispanidad.
"When the population is over 40 million, people take notice, including advertisers and broadcasters," said Alfredo Alonso, a Clear Channel official hired to convert 20 to 25 of its 1,200 English-language radio stations to Spanish formats.
MOST AMERICANS THINK 'OLD'BEGINS AT 71
ZOGBY - A poll by the Met Life Mature Market Institute conducted by Zogby International finds that 60% of Americans believe "old" is age 71 and over, but that 65% also wish they were under 40.
The study indicates that even younger people, those between 18 and 24, have adjusted their idea of old. A majority, 59% in that age group, refers to old as someone over 60. Furthermore, though most people over 35 say they wish they were younger and there is a clear desire to be young, there are a significant number of older people, 31% of those over 70, who are content with their current age.
Thirty-two percent of respondents to the poll say the ages between 71 and 80 are old. Eighteen percent say 81 to 90 is old and 12% say old is between 41 and 60.
Respondents living in the west (37%) were the most likely to say old is 71 to 80, while southerners (23%) were most likely to put "old" in the 61 to 70 range.
Whites are slightly more likely than African Americans and Hispanics to choose a younger age as old. In general, single respondents are more likely than married ones to choose a younger age as old, while those who are married are more likely to choose an older age.
And, displaying a distinct difference between the sexes, men are more likely than women to say an age under 60 is old (22% of men vs. 8% of women).
Eighteen-to-29 year-olds are the most satisfied with their current age, or close to it, as 62% say they would like to be 21 to 30. Two in five (40%) 30-to-49 year-olds wish they were in their twenties, nearly twice as many of that age group who wish they were in their thirties. Fifty-to-64 year-olds are closely divided between wishing they were 21 to 30 (24%) or 51 to 60 (21%) and respondents 65 and older are closely divided in wishing they were 21 to 50 and 61 to 80.
BRUCE DIXON, BLACK COMMENTATOR - About half the nation's 2.2 million prisoners are black. With only 36 million of us, that's an astounding 3% of African Americans, counting all ages and both sexes, languishing behind bars, with a roughly equal number on probation, parole, house arrest or other court supervision. Almost one in three 18-year-old black males across the board is likely to catch a felony conviction, and in some communities nearly half the black male workforce under 40 have criminal records. A felony conviction in America is a stunningly accurate predictor of a life of insecure employment at poverty-level wages and no health care, of fragile family ties, of low educational attainment and limited or no civic participation, and a strong likelihood of re-imprisonment. Each month, tens of thousands of jobless, skill-less, stigmatized and often anti-socialized ex-prisoners are released back into communities that lack job and educational opportunities, where intact families are more the exception than the rule, and where upward social mobility is a myth. . .
So if you want to know where black families fare the worst, where the lowest wages and life expectancy are, where to find the highest unemployment and the greatest number of single parent households among African Americans, you don't need an online survey. You certainly don't count the black businesses or the black elected officials. You count the black prisoners, and the former prisoners, and the ruined communities they come from and are discharged into. That's what BC did, and here are the results.
Wisconsin leads the nation in the percentage of its black inhabitants under lock and key. Just over four percent of black Wisconsin, including the very old and the very young of both sexes, are behind bars. Most of the state's African Americans reside in the Milwaukee area, and most of its black prisoners are drawn from just a handful of poor and economically deprived black communities where jobs, intact families and educational opportunities are the most scarce, and paroled back into those same neighborhoods. So Wisconsin, and in particular the Milwaukee area justly merit the invidious distinction of the worst place in the nation to be black.
Iowa, with only a small black population, is not far behind. The crime control industries in Wisconsin and Iowa seem to have learned to make the most efficient use of the preferred human material available to them, locking up the few black inhabitants of those states at a rate 11.6 times higher than whites.
Texas, the nation's second largest state, is the third worst place to be black in America, and is in a class by itself, first because its extraordinary rate of black incarceration affects such a large population. Only New York has more African Americans than Texas, and only the two relatively small states previously mentioned lock up a higher percentage of their black citizens. Though California has 50 percent more people, Texas has a slightly larger prison population and only a 5 to 1 ratio between its black and white rates of imprisonment. We may safely assume that since very few of its wealthy Texans are behind bars, Texas is just a very bad place to be poor, whether you're black or not.
PERCENT OF THOSE OVER 21
DRINKING BEER IN PAST MONTH
Milwaukee, WI 54%
Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN 53%
Denver, CO 51%
St. Louis, MO 50%
Buffalo, NY 50%
Albany/Schenectady/Troy, NY 50%
Boston, MA 50%
San Jose, CA 49%
El Paso, TX 49%
REUTERS - U.S. workers say they squander over two hours a day at the workplace, with surfing the Web, socializing with co-workers and simply "spacing out" among the top time-wasting activities, according to a survey. Most U.S. companies assume about an hour of wasted time. . . Of 10,044 employee respondents, 33 percent said they engaged in time-wasting activities because they didn't have enough work to do. Nearly a quarter of those surveyed said they squandered their work hours because they were underpaid.
All the money spent to support or oppose abortion over the past three decades has been of little avail. The public simply hasn't changed its mind. These Gallup poll figures show the support in percent for always legal and sometimes legal over the years:
RICHARD MORIN, WASHINGTON POST - Psychologists Linda M. Fleming and David J. Tobin can't tell you where to look for today's fathers. But they do know where not to look: on the pages of modern books on child-rearing. . . Daddies who change diapers, cart the little one to the pediatrician or help cook for Baby Dearest rate barely a mention in the typical child-care book, Fleming and Tobin of Gannon University in Pennsylvania claim in an article for the journal Psychology of Men & Masculinity.
Instead, they found that recently published guides to raising babies, when they mentioned dads at all, typically perpetuated outdated stereotypes that portray fathers as being little more than what these researchers termed the "parenthetical parent."
To measure what child-raising experts were saying about dads, Tobin and Fleming identified every child-care book published in English during the 1990s that was still in print in 2001. Then they selected books that concentrated on general issues of child-rearing in children from birth to age 6. From the resulting list of 66 books they randomly selected 23 for analysis and scanned the pages of each into a computer.
Then they scrutinized each of the 56,379 paragraphs in these books, counted those that mentioned father's roles in child-rearing, and performed additional analyses to determine how dads were portrayed.
They found that only 4.2 percent of the paragraphs in these books referred to fathers -- and nearly a third of these references were negative. (Because references to mom were so numerous and the tallying so labor intensive, the researchers did not do specific tallies for the maternal side of the partnership.). . .
NY TIMES - White men with prison records receive far more offers for entry-level jobs in New York City than black men with identical records, and are offered jobs just as often - if not more so - than black men who have never been arrested, according to a new study by two Princeton professors.
The study, the first to assess the effect of race on job searches by ex-convicts, also found that black men who had never been in trouble with the law were about half as likely as whites with similar backgrounds to get a job offer or a callback.
Black men whose job applications stated that they had spent time in prison were only about one-third as likely as white men with similar applications to get a positive response.
For every 10 white men without convictions who got a job offer or callback, more than 7 white men with prison records also did, the study found. But the difference grew far larger for black applicants: For every 10 black men without criminal convictions, only about 3 with records got offers or callbacks.
"It takes a black ex-offender three times as long to receive a callback or a job offer," said Devah Pager, an assistant professor of sociology and one of the study's two authors.
Top Ten Girls' Names
Top ten boys' names
Social Security Administration
AMERICA TURNING INTO FUNDAMENTALIST STATE?
SEVENTY-NINE PERCENT of Americans believe that, as the Bible says, Jesus Christ was born of the Virgin Mary, without a human father, according to a new Newsweek poll on beliefs about Jesus. Sixty-seven percent say they believe that the entire story of Christmas - the Virgin Birth, the angelic proclamation to the shepherds, the Star of Bethlehem and the Wise Men from the East-is historically accurate. Twenty-four percent of Americans believe the story of Christmas is a theological invention written to affirm faith in Jesus Christ, the poll shows. In general, say 55 percent of those polled, every word of the Bible is literally accurate. Thirty-eight percent do not believe that about the Bible.
93 percent of Americans say they believe Jesus Christ actually lived and 82 percent believe Jesus Christ was God or the Son of God. Fifty-two percent of all those polled believe, as the Bible proclaims, that Jesus will return to earth someday; 21 percent do not believe it. Fifteen percent believe Jesus will return in their lifetime; 47 percent do not, the poll shows.
Sixty-two percent say they favor teaching creation science in addition to evolution in public schools; 26 percent oppose such teaching, the poll shows. Forty-three percent favor teaching creation science instead of evolution in public schools; 40 percent oppose the idea.
AMERICANS DON'T BELIEVE IN EVOLUTION
[From a CBS poll]
CBS - Americans do not believe that humans evolved, and the vast majority says that even if they evolved, God guided the process. Just 13 percent say that God was not involved. But most would not substitute the teaching of creationism for the teaching of evolution in public schools. Support for evolution is more heavily concentrated among those with more education and among those who attend religious services rarely or not at all.
There are also differences between voters who supported Kerry and those who supported Bush: 47 percent of John Kerry's voters think God created humans as they are now, compared with 67 percent of Bush voters.
Overall, about two-thirds of Americans want creationism taught along with evolution. Only 37 percent want evolutionism replaced outright.
60 percent of Americans who call themselves Evangelical Christians favor replacing evolution with creationism in schools altogether, as do 50 percent of those who attend religious services every week.
EDITOR & PUBLISHER - A Gallup Poll released this morning reveals that the average American owns 1.7 guns, with the average gun owner possessing 4.4 of them. . . One out of three American women say they own a gun. That's not much below the overall mark of 40% for all American adults. . . More than half (53%) of Republicans own guns, compared with 36% of political independents and 31% of Democrats. Whites are more likely than nonwhites to own (44% and 24%, respectively), according to Gallup. Residents of the South are significantly more likely than those living in other regions to report owning a gun. More than half of those living in rural areas (56%) own a gun, compared with 40% of suburbanites and 29% of those living in urban areas. From 1959 through 1993, an average of 47% of Americans reported having a gun in their homes. Since that time, household gun ownership has dropped to an average of 40%.
FOOTBALL MORE POPULAR THAN BASEBALL BY 2 TO 1
HARRIS SURVEY - For the second year in a row, professional football leads baseball by 2-to-1 (30% to 15%) as the nation's favorite sport. Nineteen years ago, in 1985, when the Harris Poll first asked this question, professional football and baseball were in a virtual tie (24% to 23%) for first place. With a few small wobbles in the numbers, football (up six points since 1985) has steadily increased its following at the expense of baseball (down 8 points since 1985).
While baseball (15%) has slipped badly, it is still ahead of college football (11%), men's pro basketball (7%), auto racing (7%), and men's college basketball (6%).
Pro football has more fans among those aged 28-39, (42%), those with household incomes of $15,000 to under $25,000 and $50,000 to under $75,000 (both 40%), in the East (38%) and among African Americans (38%).
Baseball does best among U.S. adults who follow more than one sport with household incomes of between $35,000 and under $50,000 (22%) and with matures, aged 59 and over (20%).
College football is particularly popular in the South (19%), among college graduates (19%) and adults in more households with incomes of $75,000 or more (16%).
Auto racing (which includes NASCAR) does best in the two lowest income groups with incomes of $25,000 or less (each with 12%) and those who never went to college (11%).
[From the latest report of the Children's Defense Fund]
CHILDREN'S DEFENSE FUND - One in six children in the United States continues to live in poverty. One in eight children have no health insurance. Three out of five children under six are cared for by someone other than their parents on a regular basis. Only 31 percent of fourth graders read at or above grade level. An estimated three million children were reported as suspected victims of child abuse and neglect. Almost one in ten teens ages 16 to 19 is a school dropout. Eight children and teens die from gunfire in the U.S. each day.
Three out of four poor children live in families where someone worked and one in three poor children lives with a full-time year-round worker. More than 5.1 million children live in extremely low-income households spending at least half of their income on housing.
The richest one-fifth of households made 10.7 times as much in median income as the poorest one-fifth, the widest gap on record from the U.S. Census Bureau. Child Health
9.3 million children lack health insurance.
Infants born to black mothers are more than twice as likely to die before their first birthday as infants born to white mothers.
The number of overweight children has more than tripled since 1980. Almost nine million young people are overweight over 15 percent of children and adolescents under age 19.
Sixty-four percent of mothers with children under six and 78 percent of mothers with children ages six to 17 work outside the home.
In 48 states, the cost of center-based child care for a four-year-old is greater than tuition at a four-year public college.
The number of children participating in Head Start has more than doubled during the past three decades, but currently the program only serves three out of five three- and four-year-olds.
Seven out of ten fourth graders cannot read or do math at grade level.
Children in the poorest families are six times as likely as children in more affluent families to drop out of high school.
Three-quarters of the nation's public schools are in need of repairs, renovations, and modernization. The average school building is more than 40 years old. Yet states spend on average almost three times as much per prisoner as per public school pupil.
Three million children in a year are reported abused or neglected and referred for investigation or assessment; close to 900,000 of them are confirmed as victims of child maltreatment.
The 51,000 children adopted from foster care in 2002 is almost double the number adopted in 1995, but more than 126,000 children in foster care continue to wait for permanent families.
Two-thirds of youths in the juvenile justice system have one or more diagnosable mental health disorders. Girls are the fastest growing segment of the juvenile justice population: The arrest rate for females under age 18 increased more than 14 percent between 1993 and 2002, while the rate for males under age 18 decreased.
More than six million school-age children are left alone after school without supervision. The average child watches 28 hours of television a week and by age 18 will have seen more than 200,000 acts of violence and 16,000 simulated murders depicted on the TV screen.
WIRELESS FLASH - According to a poll by Sears and Structure clothes, 12 percent of men admit they spend "no time" figuring out their wardrobe while 25 percent need only 60 seconds to decide. An additional 16 percent need about two minutes of indecision before deciding on an outfit. But while most guys don't spend the time on their attire, 87 percent insist they don't need a makeover. However, 31 percent of women say their man "isn't style savvy" and 24 percent confess their man needs a visit from the "fashion police." Finally, the average guy spends $713 on clothes annually but one out of five is a tightwad spending less than $200 on their outfits.
Rank 1999 Rank 2003 Rank 2004 New York Yankees 2 1 1 Chicago Cubs 3 7 2 Atlanta Braves 1 2 3 Boston Red Sox 8 6 4 Detroit Tigers 10 15 5 Philadelphia Phillies 16 12 6 San Francisco Giants 26 9 7 Baltimore Orioles 9 18 8 Los Angeles Dodgers 7 8 9 Pittsburgh Pirates 18 18 9 Houston Astros 22 20 9 Cleveland Indians 5 4 9 MOST POPULAR BASEBALL TEAMS ACCORDING TO HARRIS
JOEL MILLMAN, WALL STREET JOURNAL: Much has been made of the economic lifeline provided to Latin America by the billions of dollars transferred home by immigrant workers each year. But according to a new study, more than 90 cents out of every dollar earned by immigrants stays in their adopted communities, creating a huge boost to local economies. The study, scheduled for release today by the Inter-American Development Bank and titled "Sending Money Home," estimates that the 16.7 million U.S. workers born in Latin America had a combined gross income of $450 billion last year, of which 93% was spent locally. . .
Guest workers in the top six states --- California, New York, Texas, Florida, Illinois and New Jersey --- remit well more than $1 billion home annually from each location, while remittances from North Carolina and Georgia fall just short of the $1 billion-a-year mark.
SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION'S LIST OF TOP CHILD'S NAMES
CHICAGO SUN TIMES - Twenty-five percent of the 2,500 people Orbitz surveyed leave wet towels on the ground [at hotels]. Nine percent eat in bed, and 13 percent keep the television on when they leave. . . Among the items that "mistakenly" make their way into guests' luggage are towels (18 percent), ashtrays (14 percent), bathrobes (2 percent) and bathmats (2 percent).
More than 60 percent of those surveyed say they take the toiletries supplied in the bathroom, but about one in three men ages 18 to 34 admits to raiding the housekeeper's cart in the hallway when the attendant isn't looking. . . Only about 70 percent of travelers dare touch the minibar, the $5 for a bag of nuts being just too steep.
BANGOR NEWS - While the number of wireless phone subscribers continues its climb in Maine to 519,000 in January, the number of land-based phones is dropping. Cell phone subscribers in the state now exceed the number of Verizon telephone lines running into Maine homes, according to spokesman Peter Reilly. Cell phone use in Maine is increasing rapidly even though it is one of the least-covered states for cell phone use. Only Alaska, Vermont and North and South Dakota had less mobile phone coverage, according to a Federal Communications Commission checkup at the end of 2002.
USA TODAY -Americans are increasingly gloomy about the state of the economy and the direction of the country, a Gallup Poll has found. That state of mind is a warning flag for President Bush as his re-election campaign begins in earnest. In the poll, 60% said they were dissatisfied with "the way things are going in the United States at this time." Except for a survey two weeks before the invasion of Iraq a year ago, that is the most negative reading since 1996. ~~ Most of the survey had been completed before the terrorist bombings in Madrid on Thursday.
AP - By 2050 minority groups will be 49.9 percent of the population, the Census Bureau says. Asians and Hispanics will see the most dramatic increases between now and mid-century, when the U.S. population will have grown by almost 50 percent to reach 420 million, according to bureau projections being released Thursday. America will get older, too. Nearly 21 percent of its residents will be age 65 or older, compared with 12 percent now.
Whites now represent 69 percent of the population, but their growth is slowing because of low rates of birth and immigration. Their total will grow 7 percent to 210 million, or 50.1 percent of the population, in 2050. . . Between 2040 and 2050, the Census Bureau expects the non-Hispanic white population actually will decline slightly because of a large number of expected deaths of baby boomers, who by 2040 will be at least 76. . .
The Asian population is expected to more than triple to 33 million by 2050. Hispanics will increase their ranks by 188 percent to 102.6 million, or roughly one-quarter of the population. . . The bureau expects the black population will rise 71 percent to over 61 million, or about 15 percent of the population, compared with nearly 13 percent now. Blacks would remain the second-largest minority. Asians would comprise 8 percent of the population in 2050, compared with 4 percent now.
TOM PAINE - 44 million Americans, 15 percent of population, including 8.5 million children, don't have health insurance.
Two million fewer jobs than when Bush took office. Tax cuts promising 300,000 new jobs a month never reached one-third of that goal. In December 2003, only 1,000 new jobs created. New jobs pay less than those lost.
No Child Left Behind law $7 billion short.
Landmark environmental laws weakened. Allowable levels of mercury from power plants tripled. Superfund clean-up costs shifted from polluters to public. Clean Air Act rules for dirtiest power plants relaxed.
States face largest budget crises in decades. Federal deficit has hit a new high. $87 billion spent on Irag as U.S. non-defense domestic spending plummets. Meanwhile, White House pushing for new space program, costing estimated hundreds of billions.
No WMD found. No link between Iraq and Al Qaeda found. Osama bin Laden still at large. Rebuilding Iraq marred by terrorism, corporate profiteering and failure to restore basic services.
INDEPENDENT, UK - 232: Number of American combat deaths in Iraq between May 2003 and January 2004. . .
0: Number of American combat deaths in Germany after the Nazi surrender to the Allies in May 1945. . .. . .
0: Number of funerals or memorials that President Bush has attended for soldiers killed in Iraq
100: Number of fund-raisers attended by Bush or Vice President Dick Cheney in 2003. . .
2: Number of nations that Bush has attacked and taken over since coming into the White House
9.2: Average number of American soldiers wounded in Iraq each day since the invasion in March last year
1.6: Average number of American soldiers killed in Iraq per day since hostilities began
16,000: Approximate number of Iraqis killed since the start of war
10,000: Approximate number of Iraqi civilians killed since the beginning of the conflict. . .
92%: Percentage of Iraq's urban areas that had access to drinkable water a year ago
60%: Percentage of Iraq's urban areas that have access to drinkable water today. . .
10: Number of solo press conferences that Bush has held since beginning his term. His father had managed 61 at this point in his administration, and Bill Clinton 33. . .
28: Number of days holiday that Bush took last August, the second longest holiday of any president in US history (Record holder: Richard Nixon)
13: Number of vacation days the average American worker receives each year
$10.9 million: Average wealth of the members of Bush's original 16-person cabinet
88%: Percentage of American citizens who will save less than $100 on their 2006 federal taxes as a result of 2003 cut in capital gains and dividends taxes
$42,000: Average savings members of Bush's cabinet are expected to enjoy this year as a result in the cuts in capital gains and dividends taxes
$42,228: Median household income in the US in 2001
$116,000: Amount Vice President Cheney is expected to save each year in taxes
DREAM UPDATE CONT'D
GALLUP - In 2003, only 37% of blacks said they were "very satisfied" with their lives as a whole, compared to 42% of Hispanics and 55% of non-Hispanic whites. A large number of blacks were "somewhat satisfied," bringing the total satisfaction level up to 82%, but even this is lower than whites' total satisfaction, which registers 92%. Only 17% of blacks say they are dissatisfied with their lives, similar to the 14% of Hispanics who say this, but double the rate seen among whites (8%).
This deficit in blacks' overall satisfaction is reflected in subdued black perceptions of many specific aspects of their lives. A majority of black adults say they are very satisfied with their family life and their personal health, and a majority of employed blacks are very satisfied with the job or work they do. But less than half of blacks are very satisfied with their education, housing, safety from physical harm or violence, their communities as places to live, their opportunities for success in life, or their financial situations.
JUDITH GRAHAM, CHICAGO TRIBUNE - Disparities in health care for blacks and whites widened in Chicago during most of the 1990s, even as they began to narrow nationally, according to a groundbreaking new study. More blacks than whites in Chicago were diagnosed with tuberculosis and died of cancer, heart disease, stroke and other causes, while fewer blacks received prenatal care in the first trimester of pregnancy, the report found.
Breast cancer death rates for black women in the period soared over similar rates for white women by almost 20 percent. Motor vehicle death rates for blacks topped rates for whites by nearly 70 percent. Overall, the discrepancies translate into lower life expectancies and higher health risks for blacks, and the difference is growing. . .
The study, published in the January issue of the American Journal of Public Health, is believed to be the first to examine the health of blacks and whites in a major urban center over time and put findings in the context of national trends. It shows that an especially troubling feature of the U.S. health-care system - persistent disparities in the kind and quality of medical care received by different racial and ethnic groups - appears to be a worsening problem here.
The study looked at data from 1990 to 1998. Data for 2000, which was not included, indicate the trends remained consistent through the end of the decade. "This is a huge issue. Unfortunately, providers are not blind to the color and economic circumstances of our patients," said Dr. Hugo Alvarez, an internist who works largely in the Pilsen neighborhood.
UNITED FOR A FAIR ECONOMY - Progress has been made in narrowing the divide in per capita income, poverty, homeownership, education, life expectancy and median wealth, but so slowly that the gaps would take decades or even centuries to close at the current rate. . .
- The typical black family had 60% as much income as a white family in 1968, but only 58% as much in 2002.
- One in nine African Americans cannot find a job. Black unemployment is more than twice the white rate -- a wider gap than in 1972.
- Black infants are almost two-and-a-half-times as likely as white infants to die before age one -- a greater gap than in 1970.
- White households had an average net worth of $468,200 in 2001, more than six times the $75,700 of black households. In 1989 (the oldest comparable data available), average white wealth was five-and-a-half times black wealth.
- At the slow rate that the black-white poverty gap has been narrowing since 1968, it would take 150 years, until 2152, to close.
- For every dollar of white per-capita income, African Americans had 55 cents in 1968 -- and only 57 cents in 2001. At this pace, it would take blacks 581 years to get the remaining 43 cents.
- While white homeownership has jumped from 65% to 75% since 1970, Black homeownership has only risen from 42% to 48%. At this rate, it would take 1,664 years to close the homeownership gap -- about 55 generations.
- If current rates of incarceration continue, one out of three African American males born today will be imprisoned at some point during their lifetimes.
- At the current pace, blacks and whites will reach high school graduation parity in 2013, six decades after the Brown v. Board of Education school desegregation decision. And college graduation parity wouldn't be reached until 2075, more than 200 years after the end of slavery.
MARCELLA BOMBARDIERI AND WALTER V. ROBINSON, BOSTON GLOBE - In 2001 alone, private foundations gave $28.7 billion to charities. . . In large part, the biggest beneficiaries of foundation giving are the nation's wealthiest nonprofit institutions. To be sure, some charitable foundations focus their philanthropy on programs to help the disadvantaged. But the largest foundations parcel out a surprisingly high proportion of their grants to already well-endowed colleges and universities and other elite institutions.
Indeed, the most prestigious universities on each coast, Harvard and Stanford, attracted hundreds of millions of dollars more than other recipients between 1992 and 2001, according to a study of foundation grant-making patterns done for the Globe by the Foundation Center, a research and education organization based in New York.
The study, which examined giving by 1,000 of the country's largest foundations, found that another 14 of that decade's top 20 grant recipients were also elite universities, among them Columbia, Yale, the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Chicago, and Duke. In 2001, more than one of every four dollars donated by more than 1,000 of the largest foundations went to colleges and universities. Also on the preferred donor list at many foundations: major teaching hospitals, large museums, and symphony orchestras.
By contrast, nonprofits identified in the study as human service providers received about 1 in 10 foundation dollars in 2001.
UPI - For the first time since tracking began 20 years ago, U.S. women outnumber men in higher paying, white collar managerial and professional occupations. . . Bureau of Labor Statistics data indicates that, as of Nov. 30, women represent 50.6 percent of the 48 million employees in management, professional and related occupations. In 1983, the first year the government began recording gender data for its occupational statistics, women accounted for 40.9 percent of managers and professionals.
1. Elvis $40 million
2. Charles Schulz $32 million
3. J.R.R. Tolkien $22 million 4. John Lennon $19 million
5. George Harrison $16 million
6. Dr. Seuss $16 million
7. Dale Earnhardt $15 million
8. Tupac Shakur $12 million
9. Bob Marley $9 million
10. Marilyn Monroe $8 million
A recent Websense Inc. survey discovered that 49% of employees said they surf the Web for topics unrelated to work. News sites came in first, cited by 77% of respondents as their top in-office Web read. Personal e-mail, with 52%, and online shopping, with 51%, took the number two and three spots, respectively. As for employers, 48% said they were concerned about employees' non-work surfing.
A RECENT FOX News poll reported that 47 percent of respondents disapprove of people downloading music over the Internet compared with 35 percent who approve. But in the 18-34 age group, the group most likely to take part in file sharing, 61 percent of respondents approved. . . By Sept. 29, 52 of the 261 lawsuits were settled with payments ranging from $2,500 to $7,500 each, and Nielson/Net Ratings found a 41 percent drop over the last three months in the use of Kazaa, the leading music file-sharing program. [U-Wire 10/03]
ONE IN SIX AMERICANS HAS TATTOO - AGENCE FRANCE PRESS - Around 16 percent of adult Americans have at least one tattoo, believing the body art makes them feel sexier, more rebellious and even, in some cases, more intelligent, according to a poll published. The poll carried out by Harris Interactive probed the tattoo trend from just about every angle, from sexual orientation to political affiliation. Democrats it seems are more likely to have tattoos (18 percent) than supporters of other parties, although Republicans ran them a close second with 14 percent. Among those with tattoos, 34 percent said they felt sexier, especially women, while 29 percent professed to feeling more rebellious. . .The fact that tattooing has become a conscious style choice rather than a drunken mistake was reflected in the fact that 83 percent of people with tattoos voiced no regret about having them. Among those who did acknowledge having made a mistake, the reason cited most often was "because of the person's name in the tattoo."
MODESTO BEE - Nearly one in five Americans speaks a language other than English at home, the Census Bureau reported Wednesday - a surge of nearly 50 percent during the past decade. Most speak Spanish, followed by Chinese, with Russian rising fast. . . In California, nearly 12.5 million people - 39.5 percent of those 5 and older in the state - spoke another language.
There also were more people considered "linguistically isolated" because of limited English, a situation that some analysts say can prevent people from assimilating fully into American society and hinder activities such as grocery shopping or communicating with police or fire officials. The Spanish-speaking population rose by 62 percent during the period to 28.1 million; slightly more than half also reported speaking English "very well."
The Jewish population of New York City has fallen by 5 percent since 1991, dipping below one million for the first time in a century. But Jews who left the city seemed to stay in the area, because the Jewish population has risen by a corresponding amount in three suburban counties in New York state. . . The growth in Westchester's Jewish population is particularly striking, climbing 40 percent since 1991. [NYT, IJA-Federation NY]
About a third of Americans persist in believing that homosexual relations -- even between consenting adults - should be illegal. Those most likely to believe this way include the following groups in American society:
Attend church weekly or more often 55%
65 yrs. of age and older 51
Live in rural area 49
H.S. education or less 46
Live in South 46
ANDREA K. WALKER, BALTIMORE SUN - About 45 black-owned commercial banks and thrift institutions survive today in the United States, fewer than half the number in business about 40 years ago, according to the Mbank Council, formed in San Francisco in 2001, which tracks minority financial institutions.
AMERICA'S MOST LITERATE CITIES
A study from the University of Wisconsin
FULL REPORT & RANKINGS
OVERALL RANK EDUCATION LEVEL LIBRARY SERVICE & CIRCLUATION NEWSPAPER CIRCULATION PUBLICATIONS
Motorboats sold in 1981 - 340,400
Motorboats sold in 2001 - 320,300
Sailboats sold in 1981 - 77,100
Sailboats sold in 2001 - 26,200
GALLUP - A majority of Americans accept the idea that homosexual relations between consenting adults should be legal and that homosexuality is an acceptable way of life. The acceptance of homosexuality as legal is now at the 60% level, up from 52% last year and 43% when Gallup first began asking about it in 1977. The recent survey also finds that almost 9 out of 10 Americans agree that homosexuals should have equal rights in terms of job opportunities, although opinions on allowing homosexual couples to legally form civil unions, giving them some of the legal rights of married couples, are evenly divided. A plurality of Americans believe that homosexuality is something that is a result of one's upbringing or environment, rather than being a genetic trait with which a person is born, although opinion on this has been somewhat inconsistent over time.
[The author is the head of a polling firm that does surveys for Republicans.]
DAVID B. HILL, HILL NEWS - For several decades, polls have shown strong majorities of Americans, 70 percent and more, opposed to discrimination against homosexuals in employment or housing. And growing public acquiescence to something called the "homosexual lifestyle" is also evident in polls. But a closer examination of trends unearths some equally important data that are not changing.
Gallup polls show that the percentage of Americans who say that homosexual relations "should not be legal" (42 percent to 43 percent) is about the same as it was two and three decades ago. Majority opposition (in the 50- to 55-percent range) to same-sex marriages has also stayed constant over the few years in which the question has been asked. And the percentage of Americans who say that homosexuals should not be hired as teachers at elementary schools has steadily hovered in the low-40-percent range since 1996. . .
A Gallup poll taken last year found that 55 percent of Americans consider homosexual behavior to be "morally wrong" while just 38 percent found it "morally acceptable." Whenever issues such as sodomy and same-sex marriage are considered in a moral context, as opposed to a lifestyle or rights context, the gay movement is stymied in the court of public opinion. . .
Among the 57 percent of Americans who said that homosexuality is unacceptable and inconsistent with their values and morals, a majority (52 percent) cited explicit religious objections rather than a violation of natural laws (22 percent), lifestyle (9 percent) or finding homosexuality disgusting (5 percent).
- 72% OF Americans support assisted suicide.
- 73% of Americans believe the 2nd Amendment guarantees the right of individuals to own guns.
18 to 29 YEAR OLD TALK SHOW FAVORITES
Most popular animal names
1. Max 16. Jake 2. Sam 17. Bandit 3. Lady 18. Tiger 4. Bear 19. Samantha 5. Smokey 20. Lucky 6. Shadow 21. Muffin 7. Kitty 22. Princess 8. Molly 23. Maggie 9. Buddy 24. Charlie 10. Brandy 25. Sheba 11. Ginger 26. Rocky 12. Baby 27. Patches 13. Misty 28. Tigger 14. Missy 29. Rusty 15. Pepper 30. Buster
There are now 1,600 film festivals around the world and 650 in the United States. [LA Times]
CHERYL WETZSTEIN, WASHINGTON TIMES - The overall teen birthrate - including all age levels and ethnic groups - fell to its lowest level in six decades last year, marking the 10th straight year of declines, the federal government said. Black teen-agers and high school girls between the ages of 15 and 17 saw a significant 8 percent drop in their birthrates, slightly more than the overall 5 percent decline.
66% OF ADULT AMERICANS say they have occasion to use alcoholic beverages such as beer, wine or liquor, while 34% say they totally abstain from alcohol. This trend has been extraordinarily consistent since Gallup began asking the question in 1939. The largest percentage of Americans who said they were alcoholic beverage drinkers -- 71% -- was found in 1976, '77, and '78. The smallest percentage -- 55% -- was found in 1958.
GALLUP - About two-thirds -- 65% -- of Americans say they approve of marriage between blacks and whites, while 29% say they disapprove. In 1958, just 4% of the public approved of marriage between blacks and whites, while 94% disapproved.
[Contrary to myth, the group of Americans that has done the worst in recent decades is the young male. The earnings of everyone under 25 - black, white, latino, male and female - have declined over the past twenty years, about 5% for the most part. But the earnings of black and white males under 25 are down 17 to 21%. A typical white male is earning $97 less a week in real dollars than 20 years ago. Added to this is the huge increase in young male imprisonment over the past few decades. These issues are not addressed in the Post story but undoubtedly are involved.]
MICHAEL A. FLETCHER WASHINGTON POST - At colleges and universities across the United States, the proportion of bachelor's degrees awarded to women reached a post-war high this year at an estimated 57 percent. The gender gap is even greater among Hispanics -- only 40 percent of that ethnic group's college graduates are male -- and African Americans, who are now seeing two women earn bachelor's degrees for every man. The trend, which began in the mid-1980s, has sparked concern among everyone from business leaders to demographers, who applaud the growing academic success of women but maintain that the lopsided graduation rate may foretell significant problems . . . Some researchers say the trend could herald a shift in the nation's social dynamic, with educated women unable to find mates of equal educational backgrounds. Business groups are beginning to worry about a possible dwindling share of men to fill top corporate jobs. Last week, the Business Roundtable, an organization of chief executives of some of the nation's top corporations, commissioned a study on the subject.
In India, some 70 per cent of drinkers consume hard liquor, with whisky and rum leading the popular spirits. In the United States, beer accounts for 67 per cent of the alcohol consumption. Annual per capita beer consumption in the US is 23.95 gallons, placing it 11th in the list of beer guzzling nations (Germany tops with 38.67 gallons) . . .[Times of India]
Things 20-somethings say
they can't live without
- Visits to parents 11%
- Health insurance 11%
- Cell phone 10%
- Premium cable 9%
- Car 8%
- Music/CDs 4%
[Integer Group and Business Week]
1997 1998 1999 2002 % % % % Follow 30 35 42 35 Do not follow 70 65 58 65 DO YOU FOLLOW COLLEGE FOOTBALL?
Rank 2002 Rank 1997 1998 1999 2002 1 Notre Dame 1 1 1 1 2 Florida State 6 2 2 2 3 Ohio State 7 6 5 3 4 Penn State 3 3 4 4 5 Nebraska * * * 5 6 Texas * * 10 6 7 Oklahoma * * * 7 8 Michigan 5 4 3 8 9 UCLA * * * 9 10 Florida * 7 9 10 *Not in Top 10 FAVORITE COLLEGE FOOTBALL TEAM
GALLUP - In 1950, just 29% of Americans said they took a bath or shower at least once a day during the winter. When the question was asked more recently, three-quarters of Americans said they took a bath or shower at least once a day during the winter.
Among book-reading men, 52% say they read the books they do mostly to learn something, and 25% say they read mostly for entertainment. Among women who read books, it's more evenly divided, with 42% reading to learn something and 38% reading for entertainment.
74% of nonwhites say religion is extremely or very important in their lives, compared to 63% of whites.
When asked which sport is their favorite to watch, more Americans name football than any other sport. Specifically, 37% say football, compared to 13% who mention basketball, 12% who say baseball is their favorite, and 5% who name auto racing.
WOMEN'S E-NEWS - Women now hold 15.7 percent of corporate officer positions in Fortune 500 companies, up from 12.5 percent in 2000. This is one of the largest increases in the past few years, according to a recent census report by Catalyst, a New York City-based organization that studies women and business trends. The numbers were just 8.7 percent in 1995, when Catalyst first began tracking them. . . 429 of the Fortune 5000 companies have at least one female corporate officer, up from 410 companies in 2000 and 385 in 1995. Women also are 5.2 percent of top-earning corporate officers, compared to 4.1 percent in 2000 and 1.2 percent in 1995.
WASHINGTON TIMES - The Statistical Abstract of the United States for 2002 indicates that 44 percent of U.S. adults provided volunteer services in 2000, down from 55.5 percent two years earlier. More encouraging was the findings that the 44 percent who did volunteer in 2000 contributed an average of 15.1 hours per month, compared with 14 hours in 1998.
AMERICANS' VIEW OF QUEEN ELIZABETH [GALLUP]
HUMPHREY TAYLOR, HARRIS - That very large majorities of the American public, and almost all (but not all) Christians believe in God, the survival of the soul after death, miracles, heaven, the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and the Virgin birth will come as no great surprise. What may be more surprising is that half of all adults believe in ghosts, almost a third believe in astrology, and more than a quarter believe in reincarnation - that they were themselves reincarnated from other people. Majorities of about two-thirds of all adults believe in hell and the devil, but hardly anybody expects that they will go to hell themselves.
The survey also found that women are more likely than men to hold both Christian and non-Christian beliefs. African-Americans are more likely than whites and Hispanics to hold Christian beliefs, as are Republicans. The level of belief is generally highest among people without a college education and lowest among those with postgraduate degrees. The 90% of adults who believe in God include 93% of women, 96% of African-Americans and 93% of Republicans but only 86% of men, 85% of those with postgraduate degrees, and 87% of political independents.
68% of the public believes in the devil, and 69% believe in hell.
51% of the public, including 58% of women, and 65% of those aged 25 to 29 but only 27% of those aged 65 and over believe in ghosts.
31% of the public believes in astrology including 36% of women and 43% of those aged 25 to 29 but only 17% of people aged 65 and over, and 25% of men.
27% believe in reincarnation, that they were once another person.
One of the more intriguing findings is that not all people who call themselves Christians believe all the conventional Christian beliefs. For example, one percent of Christians do not believe in God, 8% do not believe in the survival of the soul after death, 7% do not believe in miracles, 5% do not believe in heaven, 7% do not believe in the Virgin birth and 18% do not believe in hell.
Even more surprising is that some people who say they are not Christian believe in the resurrection of Christ (26%) and the Virgin birth, Jesus born of Mary (27%).
The 2002 Most Livable State Award ALPHA ORDER RANK ORDER 2002 RANK STATE LIVABILITY RATING 2001 RANK CHANGE 2002 RANK STATE LIVABILITY RATING 2001 RANK CHANGE 48 Alabama 18.12 46 -2 1 Minnesota 33.91 1 0 28 Alaska 24.86 37 9 2 Iowa 32.26 3 1 40 Arizona 21.67 36 -4 3 New Hampshire 31.81 13 10 47 Arkansas 18.88 44 -3 4 Virginia 31.47 4 0 33 California 23.88 32 -1 5 Massachusetts 30.98 9 4 7 Colorado 30.29 2 -5 6 Nebraska 30.84 10 4 9 Connecticut 29.63 6 -3 7 Colorado 30.29 2 -5 19 Delaware 25.93 21 2 8 Wyoming 29.72 12 4 39 Florida 21.95 40 1 9 Connecticut 29.63 6 -3 35 Georgia 23.42 33 -2 10 New Jersey 29.60 11 1 43 Hawaii 20.53 34 -9 11 Wisconsin 29.37 8 -3 21 Idaho 25.56 20 -1 12 Utah 29.07 5 -7 31 Illinois 24.00 31 0 13 Kansas 29.02 7 -6 20 Indiana 25.79 21 1 13 South Dakota 29.02 16 3 2 Iowa 32.26 3 1 15 Maine 28.53 17 2 13 Kansas 29.02 7 -6 16 North Dakota 28.23 25 9 42 Kentucky 21.07 43 1 17 Maryland 28.09 14 -3 49 Louisiana 17.02 49 0 18 Vermont 27.63 15 -3 15 Maine 28.53 17 2 19 Delaware 25.93 21 2 17 Maryland 28.09 14 -3 20 Indiana 25.79 21 1 5 Massachusetts 30.98 9 4 21 Idaho 25.56 20 -1 23 Michigan 25.51 27 4 21 Washington 25.56 18 -3 1 Minnesota 33.91 1 0 23 Michigan 25.51 27 4 50 Mississippi 17.00 50 0 24 Pennsylvania 25.49 30 6 26 Missouri 25.37 19 -7 25 Ohio 25.40 24 -1 32 Montana 23.98 39 7 26 Missouri 25.37 19 -7 6 Nebraska 30.84 10 4 27 Oregon 25.33 23 -4 34 Nevada 23.77 26 -8 28 Alaska 24.86 37 9 3 New Hampshire 31.81 13 10 29 Texas 24.37 29 0 10 New Jersey 29.60 11 1 30 Rhode Island 24.26 28 -2 46 New Mexico 19.93 47 1 31 Illinois 24.00 31 0 37 New York 22.72 35 -2 32 Montana 23.98 39 7 36 North Carolina 22.88 42 6 33 California 23.88 32 -1 16 North Dakota 28.23 25 9 34 Nevada 23.77 26 -8 25 Ohio 25.40 24 -1 35 Georgia 23.42 33 -2 38 Oklahoma 22.60 41 3 36 North Carolina 22.88 42 6 27 Oregon 25.33 23 -4 37 New York 22.72 35 -2 24 Pennsylvania 25.49 30 6 38 Oklahoma 22.60 41 3 30 Rhode Island 24.26 28 -2 39 Florida 21.95 40 1 41 South Carolina 21.30 38 -3 40 Arizona 21.67 36 -4 13 South Dakota 29.02 16 3 41 South Carolina 21.30 38 -3 43 Tennessee 20.53 45 2 42 Kentucky 21.07 43 1 29 Texas 24.37 29 0 43 Hawaii 20.53 34 -9 12 Utah 29.07 5 -7 43 Tennessee 20.53 45 2 18 Vermont 27.63 15 -3 45 West Virginia 20.14 48 3 4 Virginia 31.47 4 0 46 New Mexico 19.93 47 1 21 Washington 25.56 18 -3 47 Arkansas 18.88 44 -3 45 West Virginia 20.14 48 3 48 Alabama 18.12 46 -2 11 Wisconsin 29.37 8 -3 49 Louisiana 17.02 49 0 8 Wyoming 29.72 12 4 50 Mississippi 17.00 50 0 FOR THE SIXTH YEAR IN A ROW, the Minnesota is the nation's most livable state according to a ranking by Morgan Quitno Press, a Lawrence, Kansas-based publishing and research company. Also making a repeat appearance in the award spotlight - but at the opposite end of the scale - is Mississippi, which ranks #50 for the fourth consecutive year. The ranking is based on 43 factors. Rounding out the top five spots are Iowa, New Hampshire, Virginia and Massachusetts. Bringing up the opposite end of the scale with Mississippi are Louisiana in 49th, Alabama in 48th, Arkansas in 47th and New Mexico in 46th place. IF YOU HATE BEER, MOVE TO UTAH BEST AND WORST STATES FOR WOMEN
FROM THE LATEST REPORT OF THE INSTITUTE FOR WOMEN'S POLICY RESEARCH
BLAINE HARDEN, NY TIMES, Vacherie, LA - For children growing up in this bayou town, the cultural imperative is clear: Don't set up housekeeping where you have to call your mama long distance. . . Carved out of sugar cane fields and crowding the Mississippi River about 30 miles west of New Orleans, Vacherie is a stupendously static exception to the American rule of wander. With an almost total absence of population mobility, it is the most rooted town in the most rooted state in the country. . . Americans do tend to roam. In the 1990's, at least one in four was on the move, according to the 2000 census, with 73 million people moving across state lines and another 13 million immigrating from other countries. In Nevada, by far the most transient state, nearly four out of five residents were born in another state or country. In Louisiana, the least transient, only one in five residents was born elsewhere. Ninety-eight percent of Vacherie's 5,787 residents were born in Louisiana and 80 percent live in the houses they occupied in 1995, according to the census. Nationally, 60 percent of Americans live in the state where they were born and 54 percent live in the house they occupied in 1995.
BETH SHAPIRO, 365 GAY - A new Gallup Poll shows that Americans believe 20 percent of the general population is gay or lesbian. . . Roughly a quarter of those surveyed thought that more than 25% of the population is gay. Gallup also noted that male respondents tended to give lower estimates of both the gay and lesbian populations than female respondents did, and that both sexes believe there are more gays of the opposite sex than of their own sex. At least one in six respondents did not offer an estimate. . . In the 1950s the Kinsey Institute shocked Americans when it said ten percent of the American population was gay.
Women as a percent of all farm owners
1. New Hampshire, 17.60%
2. Alaska, 17.34%
3. Hawaii, 16.85%
4. Massachusetts, 16.61%
5. Rhode Island, 15.65%
6. Florida, 15.47%
7. Connecticut, 15.00%
8. New Jersey, 14.90%
9. Nevada, 14.35%
10. Oregon, 14.11
A NATIONWIDE POLL recently conducted of lower-income parents and guardians released today by the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the U.S. found that parents and guardians overwhelmingly support comprehensive sex education programs that teach young people all aspects of sexuality, including how to use birth control to prevent unintended pregnancy and how to protect against sexually transmitted diseases. This tremendous support cut across ethnicities - White, African American, and Hispanic. . . All parents agree across ethnicities that a comprehensive approach is preferable to one that only instructs about the dangers of sex and postponing sex until marriage.
STEVEN A. CARAMOTA, NATIONAL REVIEW - The number of Middle Eastern immigrants in the U.S. has grown nearly eightfold from 1970 to 2000, and expected to double again by 2010. . . We defined the Middle East broadly as running roughly from Morocco to Pakistan. While the overall size of the foreign-born population has tripled since 1970 and now stands at 31 million, the number of immigrants from the Middle East has grown more than twice as fast - from fewer than 200,000 in 1970 to nearly 1.5 million in 2000. Immigrants from the Middle East are one of the most highly educated groups in America, with almost half having a bachelor's degree Another positive sign is their high rates of citizenship: Half are U.S. citizens compared with 35 percent of immigrants overall.
DEBRA NUSSBAUM COHEN, JEWISH WEEK - In a new national survey, Gary Tobin, president of the San Francisco-based Institute for Jewish Community Research, reveals that 6.7 million Americans say that Judaism is their primary religious or ethnic identification. That is significantly more than the 5.5 million people in the "core Jews" category reported by the 1990 National Jewish Population Survey. Tobin's study found an additional 2.5 million respondents who he terms "Jewishly connected non-Jews." Those people said, among other things, that they practice Judaism as a secondary religion; that their spouse or other household member is Jewish; that they have one Jewish parent but do not themselves identify as Jews; or that they simply feel "Jewish in their hearts," Tobin said. That totals 9.2 million people - 1 million more Jews and non-Jews who live with Jews than were found by the 1990 NJPS. In addition, Tobin's study estimates that another 4.1 million Americans report having some Jewish blood, though they are not Jewish themselves, because they have a Jewish grandparent or other relative (besides a parent). . . More than the numbers themselves, Tobin's survey, which is likely to spark much controversy, sets the stage for a debate over whom should be counted as a Jew; the community's perception of itself as either withering or thriving; and the crucial communal policy and funding decisions made by Jewish organizations and private foundations that will flow from the demographic data.
DEIRDRE FLEMING, PORTLAND PRESS HERALD - The number of Americans age 16 and older who hunt and fish has gone down in the past five years, and they are spending less as a group, according to a 2001 national survey. It also found that an increasing number of wildlife watchers are spending more. Since 1996, the number of hunters and anglers across the nation dropped from about 40 million to 38 million, and they spent $70 billion last year compared to $72 billion in 1996, according to Nicholas Throckmorton with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. . . Meanwhile, the number of wildlife watchers nationally increased from 63 million to 66 million in the past five years. They spent about $29 billion in 1996 and $38 billion last year, according to the service.
ORGANIC GROWERS remain a small minority of the 2 million U.S. farmers, but their ranks appear to be growing. Recent data found 7,800 farmers who grow foods organically, up from about 6,600 in 1999, according to the Organic Farming Research Foundation. . . Retail sales of organic foods have grown 20 percent or more annually since 1990, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Organic products are now available in about 20,000 natural food stores around the United States and are sold in 73 percent of all conventional grocery stores. Organic food sales amount to an estimated $11 billion a year now, and are projected to hit $20 billion by 2005. - ABC
TAMAR LEWIN, NY TIMES - Over the past decade, the percentage of high school students who say they are virgins has ~ outnumbered those who had engaged in sexual intercourse, 54 percent to 46 percent. A decade earlier, the percentages were the opposite. Among sexually active students, 58 percent said they had used condoms when they last had intercourse, up from 46 percent a decade earlier. There was also a decline in the percentage of high school students who had had four or more sex partners, with 14 percent reporting such experience in 2001, compared with 19 percent in 1991.
% of US births delivered to unwed mothers, 1957: 5%
% of US births delivered to unwed mothers, 2000: 33%
GALLUP - Politically speaking, there is little question that Jews are the most Democratic of the major religious groups in America today, but they are by no means monolithically so. Of the 408 respondents who identified their religious affiliation as Jewish in 21 separate Gallup surveys conducted over the past year and a half, exactly half give their political orientation as Democratic. About a third say they are independents, and 17% are Republicans. Protestants tilt slightly more Republican than the national average, while Catholics are slightly more Democratic. Those who say they have no religious affiliation are much more likely to say they are independent than is the average American adult. The party identification of Jews appears to be remarkably stable. An analysis of over 30,000 Gallup Poll interviews conducted from 1992 to 2001 shows almost exactly the same distribution of party identification among the Jewish population as is the case in the most recent year and a half: 50% Democrat, 32% independent, 18% Republican.
Most analyses show that the Jewish vote in presidential elections is strongly likely to go to the Democratic ticket, and that was particularly the case in 2000. The Voter News Service and Los Angeles Times exit polls from the 2000 presidential election show that about eight out of 10 Jewish voters nationally voted for the Gore-Lieberman ticket (compared to about 48% of the national popular vote that went to Gore-Lieberman).
The Jewish population in America -- while comparatively more liberal than the national average -- is still not overwhelmingly so. Over half of the Jewish population in America over the past decade identifies itself as either conservative or moderate.
Percentage of U.S. college students who say they would try to evade the draft if one were called today: 37%
Market share of sodas
Coca Cola: 44%
Pepsi Cola: 32%
Dr Pepper & Seven Up: 16%
D'VERA COHN WASHINGTON POST - One in five Americans were born in another country or have at least one parent who was, according to a Census Bureau report. The number of first- and second-generation Americans with roots outside the United States is the highest in the nation's history, fueled by changes in U.S. immigration laws that began three decades ago. The ranks of U.S. residents born abroad have tripled to 28.4 million, or 1 in 10 U.S. residents. Still, their proportion in the population is far lower than it was at the beginning of the last century, when more than 1 in 3 U.S. residents were of foreign origin. MORE
JOYCE HOWARD PRICE WASHINGTON TIMES - Use of cellular phones in the United States has climbed more than 20-fold - from 5 million to 110 million subscribers - since 1990, the U.S. Census Bureau disclosed in the Statistical Abstract for 2001. Other information in the new Statistical Abstract includes:
- In the spring of 1999, 46 million adults said they attended a musical performance sometime in the previous year; 35 million said they surfed the Internet, 32 million did crossword puzzles, 11 million played bingo, and 7 million flew a kite
- U.S. consumption of red meat and poultry rose from 63 billion pounds in 1990 to 76 billion pounds in 2000, a 21 percent increase.
- More than 19 million drivers were stopped by police at least once in 1999. Major reasons were speeding (51 percent); vehicle defects (11 percent); and record checks (9 percent).
- About 1 million people were involved in violent acts with intimate partners (current or former spouses or boyfriends or girlfriends) in 1998, down from more than 1.2 million such acts five years earlier. MORE
Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA)
CATHOLIC CHURCH STATS 1965 2001 Total priests 58,632 45,191 Priestly ordinations 994 509 Graduate-level seminarians 8,325 3,483 Religious brothers 12,271 5,508 Religious sisters 179,954 78,094 Parishes 17,637 19,143 Without a resident priest 549 3,151 Catholic population 45.6 m 60.6 m Percent of US population 24% 22%
A NEW STUDY by the Institute for Women's Policy Research lists Connecticut and Virginia as the best states for women, based on such issues as electoral participation, healthcare, and economics. Runners up are Washington state, Hawaii, Colorado, New Hampshire and Minnesota.
Maine, Washington and California are the best for political participation. DC, Maryland and Alaska are tops in employment and earnings. Hawaii, Utah and Vermont are tops in health.
- The District of Columbia, California, Colorado, Washington, and several New England states score well in terms of the wage gap, the level of female earnings, and women's representation in professional and managerial occupations. The fourth component of this index, women's labor force participation, exhibits slightly different trends. The percentage of women in the labor force is highest in many states among the Mountain and northern Midwestern regions.
- Although women in the United States are more likely to register to vote than men, a gap of almost 33 points divides the state with the highest registration rate for women (North Dakota, 91.2 percent) and the state with the lowest (California, 58.5 percent). Several of the top states concentrated in the northern part of the country (including North Dakota, Maine, Minnesota, Wisconsin) have either automatic or same-day voter registration. In two states, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island, men register to vote at a higher rate than women. In three states-California, Kansas, and Maine-women have filled both Senate seats. As of October 2000, six states - Alaska, Delaware, Iowa, Mississippi, New Hampshire, and Vermont - have never sent a woman to Congress.
- In state legislatures, the proportion of female representatives ranges from 7.9 in Alabama to 40.8 percent in Washington. MORE
Number of Muslims in U.S.
- Study based on Census figures of persons with ancestry from Muslim countries: 4 million
- 2000 Mosque Study Project: 6-7 million
- National Opinion Research Center: 1.7 million
- City University of New York: 1.8 million
- Statistical Assessment Service: 2 million, give or take a few hundred thousand MORE
- Forty percent of the 6.8 million U.S. residents who checked off more than one box for race [on the Census] live in the West. That compares with 27 percent in the South, 18 percent in the Northeast and 15 percent in the Midwest.
- More mixed-race people are under 18 than in the overall population. Among those of two or more races, 42 percent were under 18; among those of one race - 275 million - only 25 percent were minors.
- California, the most populous state and the most diverse on the mainland,
has the most mixed-race people: 1.6 million, about three times the number of its closest competitors, New York and Texas.
- Proportionally, Hawaii dominates, with 21 percent of the population of two or more races, followed by Alaska at 5.4 percent and then California at 4. 7 percent.
- When it comes to cities, the four biggest - New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Houston - have the most mixed-race people. San Diego, the seventh biggest, ranks fifth. And San Jose, 11th largest, places seventh when it comes to people of two races or more.
[San Francisco Chronicle]
72 percent of Americans went online in 2001. [UCLA]
American charity with the biggest annual income: Harvard U ($2.8 billion)
Also rans: Salvation Army ($2.1 billion),Red Cross ($1.8 billion), American Cancer Society ($511 million)
Harvard's rank among charities for annual private support: 11th ($313 million)
Behind (among others) the Salvation Army ($1 billion in private support); American Red Cross ($480 million) and American Cancer Society ($426 million)
[1999 figures. Wall Street Journal, World Book Almanac]
Number of hours the typical American spends each week hunting and gathering in stores: 3 [Consumer Reports]
- Rank of importance of physical attraction for men in choosing a wife in 1939: 14
- Rank of importance of physical attraction for men in choosing a wife in 1996: 8
- Rank of importance of physical attraction for women in choosing a husband in 1939: 17
- Rank of importance of physical attraction for women in choosing a husband in 1996: 13
[Family in America magazine]
NOTE THAT THE PERCENT OF BLACKS IN COLLEGE PEAKED IN THE LATE 1970s AND THAT THE GAP BETWEEN THE PERCENT OF WHITES AND BLACKS IN COLLEGE HAS ACTUALLY WIDENED OVER THE PAST THIRTY YEARS
WASHINGTON TIMES: Increasingly, Americans are well-educated, with D.C. residents leading the way. The assertion is based on data from the Census 2000 Supplementary Survey, a trial survey designed to provide detailed data annually, instead of every decade, for use by the business community and federal, state and local policy-makers. The survey, released by the Census Bureau, reveals that last year 82 percent of persons 25 years old and older had graduated from high school, up from 75.2 percent a decade ago. And last year 25 percent of the people in that age group had at least a bachelor's degree, up from 20.3 percent in 1990 . . . [The survey also found that]
* Nine percent of the U.S. population has a professional degree (up from 7 percent in 1990), while the portion of the population having less than a ninth-grade education fell from 10.4 percent in 1990 to 6.9 percent in 2000.
* Eighteen percent of the U.S. population ages 5 years and older spoke a language other than English at home last year. The figure was 14 percent in 1990.
* There were 115,904,651 housing units in the nation in 2000 530,658 of them lacked plumbing and 625,602 lacked kitchen facilities.
Average age of marriage, male, 2000: 27
Average age of marriage, male 1970: 23
Average age of marriage, female, 2000: 25
Average age of marriage, female 1970: 20 [CNN]
Just 12% of Americans now say baseball is their favorite sport to watch, down from a high point of 39% in 1948 when baseball was far and away the top category in response to this question. Today, football is the number one sport to watch, so named by 28% of Americans, followed by basketball at 16%. Older Americans are most likely to mention baseball as their favorite sport to watch. Baseball is also bigger in rural areas.
Almost no Americans mention tennis spontaneously as their favorite sport to watch, but 19% say they are fans of professional tennis. Tennis skews somewhat upscale; those with college degrees are more likely to be fans than are others, and Americans making $75,000 and up are more likely to be fans than are those with lower incomes.
56% of Americans say that they are third generation Americans or more, meaning that their grandparents, parents and themselves were born in this country. Blacks have been in this country the longest - 75% are 3rd generation or more. Hispanics have, on average, been here the shortest period of time. Only 13% are third generation, with 47% saying that they were born in another country. Between 60% and 73% of those living in the Midwest and in the South are 3rd generation or more, compared to just about four out of 10 of those living in either the East or the West.
Institutions that get less than a 50% approval rating for their service to consumers:
Health insurance companies: 38%
Tobacco companies: 28%
Oil companies: 27% [Harris]
Republicans are four times as likely to have mud rooms as are Democrats [Michael Feldman Show]
CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR: The 2000 census reveals that, for the first time this century, the black population in the South grew faster than in any other region in the 1990s. While the migration southward began as early as the 1970s, it has accelerated rapidly in recent years. The region gained more than 3.5 million blacks in the 1990s. During that time, every other region of the country reported a net out migration of African-Americans . . . The great pilgrimage South reverses a 20th-century trend that drew millions of blacks to a less racially divided North. During the 1960s in particular, in an era of racial tension and violence, blacks fled to northern cities like Detroit, New York, and Cleveland.MORE
- Number of 20-34 year old singles living with their parents: 18 million
Percent of all singles: 38% [American Demographics]
Percent of Americans who say they have a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in "faith based charitable organizations:" 37% [Gallup]
Percent of women who say they are feminists: 25%. Percent in 1992: 33% [Gallup]
Percent of Americans of Spanish or Latin American origin who prefer to be called Hispanic rather than latino: 67% [Few say they are significantly bothered by either term] [Gallup]
In 2000, nearly 15 percent of households were made up of single women and another 10.7 percent were made up of single men. This is an increase from 1970, when 11.5 percent of households were of women living alone and 5.6 percent of households were of men living alone . . . Other kinds of "non-family" households, such as roommates or cohabiting couples, grew from 1.7 percent in 1970 to 5.7 percent in 2000. [Washington Times]
Since 1990, the Hispanic population of the United States has ballooned by more than 60 percent. Following typical immigration patterns, most of the newcomers initially migrate to inner cities. As a result, the nation´s largest cities have experienced a 43 percent increase in Hispanic residents from a decade ago. . . . Within the next 10 years, some 25 percent of America´s teen-agers will be Hispanic. Marketers are busily working up strategies to target this well-defined core group. Their standard position is that these immigrant offspring will cling to their cultural roots and only half-heartedly embrace all things American. "Wrong. They are no different than any other class of immigrants and will not be immune to the constant bombardment of mainstream advertising and pop culture´s homogenizing effect. The images and icons they buy into will have a Hispanic-American flavor, but they will have an Anglo look and be as American as apple pie. - Gerald Celente, Trends Journal
Drop in hardcover sales last year: 13%. Paperback: 14%
Increase in children's book sales last year: 10% [U.S. TODAY]
The birth rate for teenaged American women is now at a record low, down 20% from 1991 [Washington Post]
Percent of American men 50 or older who are veterans: 59%
Percent of American men under 50 who are veterans: 13%
53% of Americans are very worried or somewhat worried about a worldwide disaster. 37% are not very worried and 9% are not worried at all. 60% of woman said they are very worried or somewhat worried about a worldwide disaster compared to 46% of men.
82% of Americans think children's manners are worse today than when they were children. Only 3% say children's manners are better today
Shopping center square footage per American 1986: 14.7
Shopping center square footage per American 1999: 20 [National Research Bureau]
According to the survey firm NDP Group - which tracked the everyday habits of thousands of people through the 1990s - this country is reading printed versions of books, magazines and newspapers less and less. In 1991, more than half of all Americans read a half-hour or more every day. By 1999, that had dropped to 45 percent. [Washington Post]
In 1996, 56 percent of children, compared with 51 percent in 1991, lived in what the bureau called a "traditional nuclear family," with their married, biological parents and no one else. The data match other recent trends suggesting that the dramatic social changes that swept American families during the 1970s and '80s may have slowed during the past decade. [Washington Post]
GALLUP: 83% of Americans say that gays and lesbians should be given equal job opportunities and -- unlike the clergy and education where the public has some objections -- most Americans (74%) say homosexuals should be hired for presidential cabinet positions.
GALLUP: polling finds that most Americans (82%) identify with a Christian religion - either Catholic, Protestant, Mormon, or other Christ-based faith. Gallup polling finds 2% identifying as Jewish. An additional 3% name another specific religion, such as Islam or Buddhism; 5% indicate they are religious but are not specific about what faith; while 8% say are atheistic, agnostic, or otherwise not religious. Not everyone who identifies with a religion is ardent or practicing. While 92% indicate they are religious in some way and 86% say they believe in God, just 65% say religion is very important in their lives, and only 41% attend their place of worship on a weekly or nearly weekly basis.
UPI: New data from the 2000 Census and other sources suggest the government has long underestimated the number of illegal aliens living in the United States. The Immigration and Naturalization Service had figured the number of illegal aliens as 6 million. Scholars at Boston's Northeastern University are now suggesting that the actual number might run as high as 13 million.
Increase in latino population in Colorado over past decade: 73% up to 736,000.
- Number of people who identified themselves as African-Americans who checked at least one other box on the Census former: 1.76 million
- Percent of those over 50 who checked African-American and another box: 2%
- Percent of those 18 and younger who checked African-American another box: 8%
[William Raspberry, Washington Post]
- Percent of high schoolers who say they have lied to teachers in past year: 92%
- Percent of high schoolers who say they have lied to parents in past year: 78%
- Percent of high schoolers who say they cheated on an exam in past year: 71%
- Percent of high schoolers who say they hit someone in anger in past year: 68%
- Percent of high schoolers who say they have stolen from a store in past year: 35%
- Percent of high schoolers who say they have been drunk in school in past year: 15%
[Josephson Institute of Ethics]
[The Census Bureau has figured out how long it took various new technologies to be used by 60% of the American public]
Telephone: 30 years
Radio: 10 years
Television: 5 years
Cable TV: 27 years
VCRs: 10 years
Computers: 15 years
Internet: 2 years
Number of people who rode trains in Germany in 2000: 1.7 billion
Number of people who rode trains in America in 2000: 23 million
Land area of Germany: 137,000 square miles
Land area of America: 3,718,000 square miles
Population of Germany: 83 million
Population of America: 284 million
[Amtrak, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung]
AMITAI ETZIONI: One out of 12 marriages in 1995 (8.4 percent) were interracial/ethnic marriages. Intermarriage between Asian Americans and whites is particularly common; marriages between Hispanic Americans and whites are also rather frequent, while marriages between whites and blacks are the least common. In 1998, out-marriage by Hispanics . . . totaled 16.7 percent, while non-Hispanic Asians out-married at a rate of 15 percent and non-Hispanic blacks out-married at a rate of 5 percent. . . . 'In 1990, 84 percent of all married black people over the age of 65 were in both-black marriages, but only 53 percent of married blacks under 25 were,' according to the Statistical Assessment Service. And the Census Bureau finds that . . . the number of marriages between blacks and whites has more than quadrupled, increasing from 65,000 in 1970 to 296,000 in 1994. . . . A study from the University of Michigan reports that in the 1940s about 2 percent of black men married white women, whereas by the 1980s about 8 percent did so." - Amitai Etzioni, from his new book "The Monochrome Society"
Americans have consistently indicated in polls more of an agreement with the theory of creationism than with evolution. In a 1999 poll, two-thirds said that they believe creationism should be taught along with evolution in public schools. [Gallup]
- Number of offices in the Department of Health and Human Services devoted to women's health: 5
- Number of offices in the Department of Health and Human Services devoted to men's health: 0 [Men's Health Network]
- 85% say Christmas is too commercialized
- 42% would enjoy Christmas more if there were no presents or gifts
- Almost six out of 10 say they do not enjoy Christmas shopping [Gallup]
- 36 million Americans plan to buy a natural Christmas tree
- 46 million Americans plan to use an artificial Christmas tree
- 22 million Americans plan to use no Christmas tree
- 85% of the trees are bought between Thanksgiving and the first weekend in December. [National Christmas Tree Assn.]
WASHINGTON POST: Researchers at Ohio State University who examined the study habits and academic performance of 79 college students ~ found that each additional hour of study a week translated into a tiny .025 increase in a student's quarterly grades, as measured on a four-point scale. In other words, a student would have to hit the books an average of 40 extra hours a week to raise a C to a B.
Members of the DC Bar in 1972: 10,925.
Members of the DC Bar in 2000: 74,081
NY TIMES: For the first time since the Census Bureau began tracking the numbers, families in which both parents are working have become the majority even among the most traditional families: married couples with children . . . Even married or single mothers of very young children were likely to work at least part time: 59 percent of the women with babies younger than a year old were employed in 1998, compared with 31 percent in 1976. And the numbers are even higher for those with older children. Of the 31.3 million mothers ages 15 to 44 whose children were older than a year, 73 percent worked in 1998, and 52 percent worked full time. NY TIMES
REUTERS: Americans had sex most often this year, while older teens and young adults in Japan did it the least, a global survey by a British condom maker said Tuesday. Americans were also the quickest to lose their virginity but it was the French who boasted of having the most sexual partners, said SSL International, which manufactures Durex condoms. "On average, people globally are having sex 96 times a year," said the company in its survey of 18,000 adults aged between 16 and 25. "The Americans claim to be enjoying the most sex at 132 times a year followed by the Russians (122), the French (121) and the Greeks (115)." The survey said young Japanese made love the least often at 37 times a year while Malaysians did it 62 times a year and the Chinese 69 times a year . . . Americans were the earliest to have sex at an average age of 16.4 years, followed by Brazilians at 16.5 and the French at 16.8. The French also seemed to have the most sexual partners, claiming an average of 16.7 each. The Greeks were second with 15 partners each, followed by the Brazilians at 12.5 and Americans at 11.8. Indians were the most faithful to their partners, with 82 percent saying they have had sex with just one person.
INFORMATION WEEK DAILY: Almost one in 10 new words in the newly released fourth edition of The American Heritage Dictionary of The English Language relate to computers . . . Pickett says he pointedly avoids including nouns that have been needlessly "verbed" (productized and incentivized being two criminal examples).
UPI: A new study by researchers at the University of Georgia shows that the consumer buying power of America's four largest minority groups almost doubled during the 1990s and will reach $1.3 trillion by next year. The study concludes that the consumer buying power of blacks, Hispanics, Asians and American Indians grew at a far faster rate than overall US buying power since 1990.
Percentage of California that is white: 49.9%
Percentage of California that is latino: 31.6%
Percentage of California that is Asian: 11.4%
Percentage of California that is black: 6.7%
POLITICO: The Census Bureau says between 1990 and 1999, the nation's Asian and Pacific Islander population grew 43 percent to almost 11 million people. The Hispanic population grew almost 40 percent to more than 31 million people. California, Texas and New York continue to have the highest number of minorities, but Nevada, Georgia and North Carolina had the biggest percentage increases. In Nevada, new hotels and casinos have brought an influx of Asians and Hispanics eager to fill construction and service-industry jobs. That also made Nevada the fasting-growing state from 1990 to 1999.
Nationally, the country's white population increased 7 percent between 1990 and 1999 to 225 million. Blacks remained the country's largest minority group, experiencing a 14 percent spike during the same period to 35 million, while the American Indian and Alaska Native population increased 16 percent to 2 million . . . South California had the biggest Hispanic population with 10 million. Over 3 million Hispanics moved into the state between 1990 and 1999, a 36 percent increase
Satisfaction with the way things are going in the US has dropped from 71% in February to 55% today. This is still considerably better the low of 12% that Gallup found in July of 1979.
Other recent Gallup stats:
* 86% of parents of school-aged children (in kindergarten through grade 12) send their child to public school; 10% send them to private school, while 4% send them to parochial school.
* 52% of Americans have a favorable view of the National Rifle Association, while 39% have an unfavorable view.
* 46% of Americans have a favorable view of NRA president Charleton Heston, while 30% have an unfavorable view.
In the 1950 census, America was 89% white and 10% black. Other races hardly got a look-in. Now Latinos account for around 12% of the population. Within the next five years, they will overtake blacks to become the largest minority group. If current trends continue, they will be the majority in Los Angeles County in ten years. In 20 years, they will dominate Texas and California. By 2050, one in four of the 400 [million] people who will then be living in the United States will be Latino-and if you add in Asians, their joint share will be one in
-- Average households watching major league baseball in 1995: 10.6 1999: 7.2
-- Average households watching NFL games in 1995: 13.8 1999: 12.8
-- Average households watching NBA games in 1995: 6.9 1999: 5.8
-- Average households watching NHL games in 1995: 2.4 1999: 1.8
-- Number of minutes an adult spends reading, watching, or listening to advertising each day: 60 [Bloomington Pantagraph]
-- Number of baseball teams with top ten payrolls that had losing 1999 seasons: 2 (Los Angeles, Baltimore)
-- Number of baseball teams with bottom ten payrolls that had losing 1999 seasons: 9
-- Difference in payroll for top paying team (New York Yankees) and bottom paying team (Florida): $73 million. [Baseball Commissioner, Washington Times]
-- Percent of Americans who belief discrimination against gays and lesbians should be illegal: 56%
-- Percent of Americans approving marriages between two women: 16% Two men: 15% [Harris Poll]
-- Number of barbershops in 1972: 33,000
-- Number of barbershops in 1999: 9,400 [Bureau of Labor Statistics]
Harvard University named the first black member to its seven-person executive governing body, the oldest corporation in the Western Hemisphere.
Number of independent bookstores in Harvard Square in early 1980s: 5
Number of independent bookstores in Harvard Square today: 2
Proportion of books not sold at bookstores: over half
Percent of adult consumer books sold online: 2%
Decline in sales of adult books in US in past year: 3%
-- Number of books banned from Texas schools in 1997-98: 55
-- Percent of books on the Modern Library's list of the 100 greatest books in English that have been targets of censors: 50%
-- Some books on the list of those most frequently challenged in 1998: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, The Hunt for Red October, American Indian Myths and Legends, Women on Top: How Real Life Has Changed Women's Fantasies, Beloved, Death of Salesman. [Authors Guild]
-- Time American teenagers spend watching TV during a year: 1500 hours
-- Time American teenagers spend in school during a year: 600 hours
-- Time American teenagers spend conversing with their parents during a year: 33 hours
[Character Education Partnership]