Thursday, March 25, 2010

Something I don't understand

I've been reading and listening to a lot of stories about the census lately. Most of them focus on the undercount estimates from the 2000 census and the communities that ended up underrepresented.

I know that the census was established in the Constitution of the United States.  I know it was established so that as the population grew, there would be an attempt at proportional representation for states in the House of Representatives.

What I don't understand is why it is so important to count a person's ethnicity. If we can put a bi-racial man in the White House and say we don't care about race, why do we count it on the census forms?  The answer is obviously that huge pots of money are tied to different ethnic communities based on their population. In what way is that color blind?

The Bible says in Galatians 3:28, "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus."  And in the story of the Samaritan woman at the well, Jesus crossed cultural boundaries by speaking with and extending grace and mercy to a woman who was from a 'corrupted' branch of Judaism. That's exactly what He does for us.

So why do we continue to separate from each other? Money? Power?


The Bug said...

I wish I understood. Almost everywhere I look there's an us vs. them dynamic going on. And some of those "us's" have a lot more power than the "thems" & that means the "thems" need protection in some way.

My niece is a mixture of several ethnicities. Her brothers are lily-white. Our immediate family doesn't care, but we have extended family members who are bothered by it. So sad.

Anonymous said...

Interesting fact that they include that on there. I wonder the same thing. Who cares. Aren't we just getting how many live within our borders? Seems like something else is brewing and happening that we will never find out the true answer to :)

Sweet Tea said...

I hadn't even given that a thought.
Good point.

quilly said...

The "us" and "them" mentality is an age old human flaw. In order to know who we belong to, we have to also know who we don't belong to.

Susan at Stony River said...

Good one!

There was a great discussion going on on Twitter yesterday or recently about the Census and its demographic questions. People wanting to scribble them out and put random ones in like Celtic-meso-Cherokee etc. I think it is beginning to look too antiquated -- although I believe I've heard minority groups claim that without the Census, they'd be underrepresented. But they might get lucky and be over-represented without the Census LOL