Despite the best efforts of gamblers in Atlantic City and stock anaylysts on Wall Street, no one has mastered the skill of predicting the future with 100% accuracy. We can, however, make educated guesses based upon trends and current statistical information.
With the release of 2010 census findings, current information is now available about America's second largest city and its outlying areas, and it's certainly not good (See http://tinyurl.com/4nmuhln )
The population in the areas east of Los Angeles has boomed, and this growth has been fueled by Latinos. And, of course, when one talks about "Latinos" and population on the west coast, that mostly equates to "illegal aliens from Mexico and Central America, former illegal aliens, and their offspring."
Well, what do we know about these newcomers, as a group? For starters, they earn less than other folks so they don't pay as much in taxes. Additionally, they aren't as likely to graduate from high schools and colleges as the people they are replacing, although they're far more likely to have kids earlier, more frequently, and out-of-wedlock.
Insofar as the state is concerned (aside from changing demographics), we know it's a mess. California is broke. We have a state deficit that is over twice the size of any other state's budget deficit.
Keeping these things in mind, the staff of DerailAmnesty.com (Long-time Californians and college grads, all!) sat around, shot the breeze, and tried to wrap our collective heads around the implications of all this. More specifically, what is it reasonable to expect during the next 15 or so years in our beloved southland?
Here are some of the trends we foresee. Needless to say, this is hardly scientific, and based upon a lot of speculation.
TRENDS ON THE ROAD TO 2025
- Private schools will be a growth industry. In roughly a generation, the Los Angeles Unified School District went from a point of state pride to a "drop-out factory" saturated no-man's land, to which middle class parents largely refuse to sentence their children. Having kids in L.A. is now roughly the same as having them in New Orleans or the United States Virgin Islands; if you're white, you shell out for private schools as a matter of necessity rather than luxury. As the same Latin American population that fueled L.A.'s boom in the 80's and 90's is spreading to the Inland Empire, there's no reason to expect we won't see the same story with public education repeat itself in the decade to come.
- The California State University system will suffer in terms of quality and reputation. Poor and working class Hispanic kids don't usually wind up at Stanford and Cal-Berkeley. They are often the first in their families to pursue college degrees, and they're far less likely to obtain four year diplomas than Asians and Whites. As approximately two thirds of the Golden State's population under 18 is Hispanic, these are the folks who will arrive, in far greater numbers, with laptops and aspirations, on the campuses of our country's largest university system. Unfortunately, statistics reveal that they're more likely to require remedial Math and English courses, and successfully matriculate in much smaller numbers. Simply put, what CSUN and Cal State L.A. have become, in terms of academics, many of the other CSU campuses will become, as well.
- Private security will be a growth industry. Haves like Have Nots at a distance and controlled. That's how we roll here in the U.S. of A. Suburbs evolved in our country for a reason. Gated communities will become as common in Riverside and San Bernardino as they are in their better-known sister county to the immediate west. Guys running around in uniforms and patrol cars make the middle class breathe easier, and always find employment when the poor get a little too close for comfort.
- The next L.A. race riot will extend east of the San Gabriel Valley. The people who fueled much of the looting and burning in the wake of the Rodney King verdict had children. A lot of those children, and illegal aliens who arrived since that time, can be found in an Inland Empire that is no longer lacking substantial population.
- State and city governments will grow even bigger. Poor and working class minorities in the U.S. historically vote for liberal candidates. So do people reliant upon generous government services. Further, folks from Mexico and Central America come from societies where "limited government" is simply not practiced. As bad a reputation as L.A. has given local government, there's no logical reason to think what caused city bureaucracy expansion in the City of Angels won't take root in an Inland Empire that is beginning to look like L.A.
- "Social Justice" will become a commonly heard term. Currently, "social justice" (an academic buzz word for "Socialism") is heard in college classrooms where Chicano Studies, social science courses, and History are taught. In an area of the country where more people of limited means are supplanting middle class residents, the appeal that "wealth sharing" always enjoys among Have Nots will become more pronounced.
Do you think we missed any major ones? Drop us an e-mail or comment and let us know.
By the way, when (not "if") California requires a federal financial bailout in the next few years, if the state doesn't receive it, what is written up above goes right out the window. If such monetary assistance is not forthcoming, lots of folks now in California are likely to be headed to a community near you.