An interesting article was recently published in the New York Times by Timothy Egan about the burgeoning phenomenon of ethnically homogeneous, non white, counties and suburban cities that are sprouting up across the country. A primarily West Coast phenomenon, sociologists have termed these new areas “ethnoburbs” , with Egan inferring that they will become a new political force once electoral redistricting after the 2010 census takes place.
Just in case you were wondering where Egan’s political sympathies lie, he makes sure to alert us that this phenomenon is okay because white Americans at one time were also evil separatists with their own ethnic interests.
“As a general rule, I don’t think it’s good for any democracy to see itself, much less vote, strictly along ethnic lines. But the arc of American history is encouraging on this count. What were the suburbs of the 1950s and 1960s, especially in California, but all-white ethnoburbs?”
Have no fear, once we forget our traditions and folkways, we all become happy blue jean wearing, hamburger eating, TV addicted, true Uhhmericans.
“Immigrants start out seeing the world through the lens of their parents, then move on to a broader view. Those Little Italys, Germantowns and Gaelic-speaking neighborhoods have largely disappeared. The diasporas have spread and diffused, coming together around a dish or drink or sainted holiday, with gauzy recollections of a past when they were kicked around and shunned.”
Considering that most of the areas mentioned are primarily Asian and Hispanic in composition, one can only imagine that the national question on immigration is going to become increasingly more important in the coming decade.