We’re talking about Asian Americans as a bloc. Here’s how incredibly complicated it is 2022-05-01 08:08:54


Here’s a look at how diverse Asians are in America and why we can’t talk about them as one group.

The term “Asian American” is an umbrella term for dozens of ethnic groups of Asian descent. It was First used in 1968 by UC Berkeley graduate students as the name of an organization that aims to unite Chinese, Korean, Japanese, and Filipino Americans, among others, to struggle for political and social action.

United States Census data indicates that an estimated 22 million Asian Americans live in the United States, approximately 7% of the total population. Those who self-identify as being of Chinese, Indian, or Filipino descent make up the three largest Asian groups in the United States, but neither ethnicity constitutes a majority.

For decades, Asians were grouped with Pacific Islanders by government officials and preachers. There are currently an estimated 1.6 million Pacific Islanders living in the United States, including many who identify as Native Hawaiian, Samoan, Guamani, or Chamorro.

About a third of Asians in the United States live in California

Most Asians live around large cities in four states—California, New York, Texas, and Hawaii—but for the most part, these cities are not home to a single ethnic group.

About a third of Asians in the United States live in California, with a large Chinese population in Los Angeles County along with Filipino, Korean, Japanese, and Indian communities. Meanwhile, Asians in Texas are Indians, Vietnamese, Chinese, Filipinos, Koreans, and Pakistanis.

The Asian diaspora across the country is as diverse as the reasons why people immigrate to the United States.

There are approximately 309,000 Hmong people in the United States. The largest share was in Wisconsin and Minnesota, where many settled as refugees in the 1970s.

In southern states such as Louisiana and Mississippi, Vietnamese make up the largest proportion of the Asian population. They settled in the area after the Vietnam War.

They have the largest division of income between racial and ethnic groups

A study by Pew Research found that Asian Americans are the most divided racial or ethnic group in the United States in economic terms. High-income Asian Americans near the top of the income ladder earn 10.7 times as much as those on the other end of the income spectrum.

While Asian Americans have the highest levels of education compared to blacks, Hispanics, and whites, their economic and educational levels are very diverse. Some work in white collar jobs and others work in low-wage service sectors. For example, they account for 57% of the 449,000 “various personal appearance factors,” a category that primarily includes nail salons, according to US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The highest-income Asians among those with a college degree over the age of 25 are Indians and Taiwanese, with a median household income of more than $100,000 per year. Meanwhile, the median income of a Burmese and Nepalese family is less than $46,000 and $63,000, respectively.

Koen Dinh, CEO of Southeast Asia Resource Center. “Because of the stereotype that all Asian Americans do well, those struggles have become invisible.”

Dinh said income disparities are driven by many factors, including how Asians got to the United States and the challenges that already exist in the communities in which they have settled.

“People like my parents who left as people from Vietnam left nothing more than T-shirts on their backs so that today I am free versus someone who might be from another country who immigrated with a master’s degree to their countries,” Dinh said.

They are key players in the immigration debate

While some Asian Americans have resided in the United States for generations, others have come over the years under different circumstances, including refugees and asylum seekers.

It is estimated that two-thirds of Asian Americans and one-sixth of Pacific Islanders were born outside the country Asian Americans Develop Justice – AAJC.

Asians make up a large proportion of immigrants in the United States, but they are often overlooked in the debate over immigration reform. Of the more than 11 million illegal immigrants in the United States, 1.5 million are from Asia, according to the Migration Policy Institute. This represents about 13% of the total undocumented population in the United States.

There are thousands of Asian illegal immigrants who were brought to the United States as children, a group often described as dreamers. Theresa Leea South Korean-born Brazilian pianist, is credited with inspiring a majority in the Senate Whip Dick Durbin to co-sponsor in 2001 the proposed DREAM Act, which offered legal status in exchange for attending college or joining the military.

They occupy about 3% of the seats in Congress

Asian Americans are often underrepresented in elected office across the United States, although some gains have been made in recent years.

There are 18 members of Congress who are considered part of the AAPI community, and they make up about 3% of the seats. The AAPI diversity deficiency In senior positions in President Joe Biden’s administration are also under scrutiny.
Connecticut Attorney General William Tongwho is the first Asian American to be elected to the position, says AAPI’s representation in the public service at all levels is “unacceptably low”.

“There are many more members of Congress than I did when I was a kid. We have the first vice president of AAPI in our country’s history in Kamala Harris, but our voice still isn’t enough, and in many ways, Asian Americans are still invisible in our audience,” Tong told CNN.

Tong says AIPA’s elected officials are committed to serving even if they often face stereotypes and are among the few people of color in the room.

“People still find it difficult to see and perceive Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders as good elected officials,” he said.

Voter turnout among Asian Americans is at an all-time high in the 2020 presidential election, and recent events such as escalating anti-Asian attacks and government voter suppression efforts will keep voters motivated to participate, said Kristin Chen, co-founder and CEO of Kristen Chen. Civic Engagement Group APIA Rating.
While the largest Asian population tends to be democratic, Representatives Yong Kim and Michelle Steele She became the first Korean-American Republican woman to serve in Congress after he ousted the Democrats for a single term in Southern California.