Austin, Texas (PRWEB) July 03, 2012
With a report released by the Pew Research Center just two weeks ago detailing the growth of the diverse Asian community, it is no wonder that this segment of society is beginning to flex itself in the political arena as well. The report showed that for the first time, Asians have now taken over Latinos as the largest group of new arrivals each year to the United States. In Travis County, Asians make up 6% of the population, and the numbers continue to grow.
"We can count on continued growth with this demographic," states Vik Vad, an Indian American, who is currently a candidate for Travis County Tax Assessor/Collector. "When my family moved to Austin in 1977, we knew almost every Indian family in town. Today, that's an impossibility, though we still engage in many community events and programs." Vad was the first in his family to be born in the United States, and is proud to call himself an American. "Tomorrow is Independence Day - a day in which we all come together as Americans to celebrate our freedom, whether our ancestors came here 20 years ago, or 200," he exclaims.
The Pew report explains that the term "Asian-American" encompasses a broad category of people whose origins come from an array of countries, including China, Japan, Korea, Philippines, Vietnam, and India. The report also showed that these immigrants tended to value education, and very quickly surpassed the median income and household wealth of average Americans, as a whole. The exhaustive survey even found Asian Americans to be more satisfied with their lives and finances than other Americans, as well as placing a greater value on traditional family values and strong work ethic.
Because of these trends, the first and second generation Asian communities are slowly becoming more active politically as well. Most are aware of politics in general, and individuals within these communities span the breadth of the political spectrum. "I've seen some Asians from each of the sub-groups that lean very strongly Republican or Democratic," remarks Vik Vad. "But for the most part they are true Independents, switching political allegiance based on the candidate." Mr. Vad believes that this is a positive sign though. "It really shows how well integrated Asians are into American society, rather than being polarized in one direction, which can be very unhealthy. In Austin, Asians are even dispersed geographically all over the city - another strength, in my opinion."
The Asian American population is sure to redefine politics in the coming decades, as the population continues to grow both by immigration and by birth.