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Monday, Nov. 24, 2014

Uncertainties increase as America changes

Sunday, January 15, 2006

About the only thing you can count on is change. As much as we resist, change is inevitable - both for the good and the bad. As you begin to pile years on the calendar, I believe, you yearn more for the slower pace of yesteryear because change is not often easy and not always kind.

The United States of America - like everything else under the sun - is changing, too. The census bureau says that this October, a child will be born and become the 300 millionth American. If statistics are an indicator, the child will be born in the South or West and most likely will be a white Anglo-

Saxon Protestant or Hispanic. The population today stands at 297,700,000.

The census bureau has an amazing amount of information, as you would expect, and in some ways, that information is sobering. In short, the America that we've known in our lifetime will soon disappear. As I said earlier, you can count on change.

But with that change comes some uneasy questions. Will we still have a common language in the decades ahead? How will our culture change with the gain of a new immigrant entering our country every 31 seconds on average? And what will change in just 40 years when there is no majority in this country?

It was just 1967 when our population topped 200 million. We'll top 400 million in under 40 years from now. That population will surely put additional burdens on government and taxpayers. In fact, at some point in the not-too-

distant future, the burden will overwhelm this nation and the government will be forced to take over many of the services that today are in the private sector.

I assume every generation echoes the same, sad refrain but in reality, I am glad I won't be around for the changes on the horizon. I doubt I could adapt to the multiculturalism that seems inevitable. You can put my opinions in whatever corner of philosophy you want. I'm just being honest.

One expert in the field of population makes the following prediction:

"The 300 millionth will be a Mexican Latino in Los Angeles, with parents who speak Spanish at home and with siblings who are bilingual," says demographer William Frey. Gateway cities like Dallas, Los Angeles and New York will end the era of white majority, suburban boomers.

Another expert has the following prediction:

"By the time the 300 millionth individual gets to adulthood, many of the cities today we consider small and nice to live in won't be so nice."

I now have a granddaughter who will face the challenges of these changes. Her world will be different. Her children will find a world that is simply beyond my imagination. Yet I fear - and I chose the word fear very carefully- that the United States toward the end of this century will lack the strength of character and communal determination that has carried us thus far. What follows is unknown.

This country has managed to grow and prosper for 230 years. But today, we're changing the rules that fostered that prosperity. There is no one in the leadership of this country who has the courage to address these changes. And when history is written, it will be the failure of their leadership that will chart our eventual destination.



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Michael Jensen
Michael Jensen