Quick Hits

Here are a few other news stories and interesting reads.

Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey, currently running third in the state's Republican gubernatorial primary race, has noted that he is not sure that Islam is a religion and that thus he's not sure if Constitutional guarantees of freedom of religion apply to Muslims. The full story with video from Talking Points Memo.

President Barack Obama is scheduled to visit on the Whoppi Goldberg hosted and female oriented daytime talk show "The View" on Thursday. Executive producers Barbara Walters and Bill Geddie said in making Monday's announcement that it will mark the first time a sitting U.S. president has visited a daytime talk show. Obama's interview will touch on topics including jobs, the economy, the Gulf oil spill and family life inside the White House. It is scheduled to be taped on Wednesday.

The Denver Post reports that former GOP Congressman and immigration zealot will run for Governor of Colorado on the American Constitution Party ticket.

BP CEO Tony Hayward is to step down by the end of the year. He will also get an immediate annual pension worth about £600,000 ($930,000) when he leaves according to the BBC. Meanwhile, the Miami Herald reports that Hayward will take a new job with a BP joint venture in Russia. Also see Nathan's expanded post.

The National Journal has a story on the nation's rapidly changing demographics entitled The Gray And The Brown: The Generational Mismatch. A snippet:

At the root of the generational mismatch are federal policies that severely reduced immigration from the 1920s until Congress loosened the restrictions in 1965. With immigration constrained, whites remained an overwhelming majority of American society through the mid-20th century, including the years of the post-World War II Baby Boom. (Demographers date the Baby Boom from 1946 to 1964, the year before the restrictions on immigration were eased.) The result was a heavily white generation of young people.

"Most Boomers grew up and lived much of their lives in predominantly white suburbs, residentially isolated from minorities," Frey wrote this spring. They are now graying into a senior generation that is four-fifths white, according to census figures.

Since 1965, however, expanded immigration and higher fertility rates among minorities have literally changed the face of America, particularly on the playground. As recently as 1980, minorities made up about one-fifth of the total population and one-fourth of children under 18. Today, the Census Bureau reports, racial minorities represent about 35 percent of the total population and 44 percent of children under 18. Whites make up 56 percent of young people and 80 percent of seniors. The 24-point spread between the white percentage of the senior and the youth populations is what Frey calls the cultural generation gap.

This split has widened rapidly over the past quarter-century. In 1980, it stood at just 14 percentage points, according to calculations performed by the Census Bureau for National Journal. The gap expanded to 18 points by 1990 and 23 points by 2000. Today, it is visible across a wide swath of the U.S. In 31 states, the difference between the white share of the senior and youth population is at least 19 percentage points.

The article goes on to discuss the political implications of this racial and generational divide. Another somewhat related story below.

Climate refugees are already a fact of life. But a new study suggests that the number is to grow exponentially. As many as 7 million Mexicans could migrate to the U.S. by 2080 as climate change reduces agricultural production in Mexico, according to a new study being published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. More from the Los Angeles Times.

Tags: Right Wing Extemism, The View, Tony Hayward, US Demographics, tennessee, global climate change, Tommy Tancredo, Colorado Governor's Race (all tags)


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