Classifying things is tricky, especially when the things you’re trying to classify are people. The groups expand and contract, and the groupers don’t always get the memo. Maybe they missed that, in certain circles, Latino/Latina became Latinx, or that Native Americans also accept “indigenous,” or that L.G.B.T.Q. often takes an “I.A.” at the end.
But the evolution of how a particular group identifies itself is one thing; how we group all those groups is something else. And in the United States, that grouping tends be an either/or that sums up how this country envisions who’s who. It’s a system that, at least superficially, doesn’t hurt too much, because it seems pretty simple: In the United States, you’re either straight and white (and so on), or you’re in the minority. In fact, you are a minority. And that can be awkward.
Let’s say we’re having a conversation about the Oscars. We’re talking about how excited we are that this year’s Best Picture mix could include not only Alfonso Cuarón’s drama about a Mexican domestic worker (“Roma”), Spike Lee’s buddy movie about a black cop and the KKK (“BlacKkKlansman”) and Barry Jenkins’s family tragedy based on a James Baldwin novel (“If Beale Street Could Talk”), but also “Black Panther,” “Crazy Rich Asians” and a smash-hit biopic about the flamboyantly queer British-Zanzibarian Desi frontman of Queen (“Bohemian Rhapsody”). And in expressing all this excitement, I say the best part is that the Best Picture category could be mostly minorities.
Now, there’s a version of this conversation in which you say: “I know. Right?!” and then confess that you don’t really like half of those movies, and we do battle over what terrible taste one of us has. But there’s also a version in which you hear me say “mostly minorities” and stop listening for a moment. You stop because my math makes no sense: mostly minorities? The Best Picture field has as many as 10 slots and as few as five. There’s no configuration in which the six movies above would constitute anything but a majority. So the question is: a majority of what?
In matters of identity, “minority” is about as axiomatic as a designation can get: There are straight, white able-bodied people, and then there’s everyone else. But it can also represent a kind of derogation. That’s how the sociologist Louis Wirth saw it in 1946, when he published his study “Morale and Minority Groups.” Wirth wrote that the word applied to “those who because of physical or social or cultural differences receive differential treatment and who regard themselves as a people apart. Such groups characteristically are held in lower esteem, are debarred from certain opportunities or are excluded from participation in national life.” His assessment didn’t feature a lot of numbers, because it didn’t need them: Your people could be “apart” and marginalized even if you made up 60 percent of the population.
Wirth included some European immigrants and their descendants in that group: Once upon a time, Italians and Poles were minorities, too. But they slowly assimilated into whiteness, creating an even more substantial majority — a bloc that left everybody else on the far side of the moat, minoritized. In his 2016 book, “Stamped From the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America,” the historian Ibram X. Kendi sees this designation as nothing but trouble. “It made no sense as another name for Black people,” he writes, “since most Black people lived, schooled, worked, socialized and died in majority-Black spaces. The term only made sense from the viewpoint of Whites, who commonly related to Black people as the numerical minority in their majority-White spaces, and elite Blacks, who were more likely to exist as the numerical minority in majority-White spaces.”
During the civil rights era, as laws were reshaped to include and enfranchise more Americans, the accompanying science came to refer to nonwhite groups — or, in theory, any group that was less than half the population — as minorities. And doesn’t that sound as though it’s defusing something? It’s not a direct insult and not a pungent curse word. It’s simple math, couching your social status in a numerical tally. It sounds both apolitically right and politically correct. In America, it is now used interchangeably with “person of color” and “nonwhite,” and while there are those who will grumble, “minority” just isn’t that much of a feather-ruffler. I’ve never heard a white person, meanwhile, say, “I’m a majority.” Not unless a righteous sense of persecution is afoot — in which case you get upswells like the Moral Majority and the Silent Majority, blurring the line between “majority” and “supremacy.”
“Minority” sounds as if it’s rooted in data science and census results, but it has clearly busted free from the lab, carrying with it everything that’s ugly and presumptuous about what in this country belongs to whom. It’s so built into the language that you can make casual puns with it. Vice has a race-oriented online news show called “Minority Reports.” That’s a play on “The Minority Report,” a 1956 story from Philip K. Dick with a Dick-ishly ornate plot. A trio of oracles predict crimes that will happen in the future; when their predictions misalign, the state issues a majority report and a minority one. When two of these visionaries foresee a murder, the murderer-to-be goes looking for the minority report to clear his name. This is the simple-math way of thinking: In a democracy, the majority decides, and the minority dissents. Apply that tidy division to race, and there’s power math to do. The majority even gets to designate what kind of minority to be: model.
Sometimes majority is so ingrained that you can call people “minority” even when the minority is you. Just this fall, the movie “Widows,” an overwrought yet underrated heist thriller, pulled some rich irony out of this arrangement and built it into an almost throwaway moment: A white Chicago politician unveils a new business initiative for the ladies of his almost entirely black district, standing on a platform beneath a banner that reads “Minority Women Owned Work,” or “MWOW.” The crowd is thin, but in this neighborhood, it’s clearly the politician who is in the minority. The movie understands that the word isn’t a numerical distinction. It’s a matter of existential domain.
“Minority” sounds too official to do much harm. It’s not buzzy or obviously fraught. Kids aren’t greeting each other with it. Men haven’t injected it into barbershop arguments; nobody’s ever said, “Minority, please,” before disagreeing with me. It persists because the math feels loosely sound: Since this nation’s founding, “White/Caucasian/European” has been its most sizable racial category. Getting there required the slaughter of lots of those indigenous folks, but who’s counting? Well, white people are — the preservation of that majority has entailed everything from genocide to the invention of stuff like antimiscegenation laws.
This is how “minority” becomes a designation of passenger status in a car somebody else is always driving — even as more and different minorities ride in the back seat, even as the car becomes “majority-minority.” That’s the term used to describe, say, cities or districts where white people make up less than 50 percent of the population. More significant, it denotes the nearish point — the Census Bureau has it at about 2044 — when the whole country’s white population is expected to fall below 50 percent. Having grouped everyone else together as a single thing — “minorities” — white Americans may soon find themselves outnumbered by it.
The bureau made that announcement in 2014. A few years later, Sabrina Tavernise of The New York Times checked in with some demographers who were bracing for an intense backlash. The former bureau director, Kenneth Prewitt, confided that he was “really worried.” “Statistics are powerful,” he told her. “They are a description of who we are as a country. If you say majority-minority, that becomes a huge fact in the national discourse.” To the doomed majority, the pending reversal seems to spark feelings ranging from nostalgia to rage.
It has always been possible, of course, for a small minority to hog the driver’s seat. Ethnic minorities dominate nations all over the world. The American electoral system would certainly allow for something similar here: Already, the party that received fewer votes controls the presidency, the Senate and several state legislatures — a situation countless news outlets, like The Washington Post, Slate, Vox and The Atlantic, have described as “minority rule.”
Louis Wirth’s 73-year-old study might seem a little musty now, but he had his finger on the pulse of the problem. “Certain groups,” he wrote, “tend to develop a conception of themselves as inferiors, as aliens and as persecuted groups, which significantly affects their roles in the collective enterprise in the nation.” Some white people are acting as if they’re already there: keenly concerned about irksome moral math, as nonwhite people have been for a long time. They’re starting to think not only about who’s counting but also about who counts.B:
【没】【了】【乌】【雅】【丹】【的】【捣】【乱】，【宴】【会】【按】【计】【划】【进】【行】【着】，【金】【政】【民】【的】【态】【度】【摆】【得】【很】【低】，【赢】【得】【北】【地】【不】【少】【大】【臣】【的】【好】【感】。 【黄】【裕】【章】【甚】【至】【与】【身】【旁】【的】【傅】【正】【文】【低】【语】【感】【叹】：“【高】【丽】【这】【位】【皇】【子】，【不】【是】【个】【简】【单】【人】【物】。” “【可】【惜】【了】，【听】【说】【不】【得】【宠】。”【傅】【正】【文】【淡】【然】【一】【笑】，【深】【邃】【的】【眼】【睛】【逡】【巡】【在】【宴】【会】【厅】【中】，【与】【傅】【跬】【的】【神】【色】【倒】【是】【有】【七】【八】【分】【相】【像】。 【金】【政】【民】【在】【高】【丽】【确】【实】
【两】【个】【人】【吃】【饱】【了】【喝】【足】【了】，【张】【嫂】【和】【张】【叔】【也】【走】【了】，【就】【剩】【下】【夜】【凌】【曦】【和】【夜】【凌】【渊】【两】【个】【人】。 【夜】【凌】【渊】【擦】【了】【擦】【唇】【角】【看】【着】【夜】【凌】【曦】，【这】【么】【多】【年】【过】【去】【了】，【没】【想】【到】【还】【能】【吃】【到】【家】【人】【亲】【手】【做】【的】【食】【物】。 【夜】【凌】【渊】【心】【中】【还】【真】【是】【有】【些】【感】【慨】。 【只】【不】【过】…… “【曦】【曦】，【你】【以】【前】【可】【是】【只】【会】【用】【热】【水】【泡】【方】【便】【面】【的】【主】，【现】【在】【居】【然】【会】【煮】【馄】【饨】【面】【了】？【还】【真】【是】【让】【哥】【哥】【刮】【目】
【三】【名】【渡】【劫】【期】【修】【士】【看】【到】【那】【小】【型】【阵】【法】【尽】【皆】【狂】【喜】【不】【已】，【随】【后】【以】【闪】【电】【一】【般】【的】【速】【度】【冲】【了】【过】【去】，【想】【看】【看】【里】【面】【究】【竟】【是】【何】【物】。 【只】【不】【过】【那】【阵】【法】【散】【发】【着】【七】【彩】【之】【光】，【又】【能】【屏】【蔽】【神】【识】，【三】【人】【围】【着】【阵】【法】【看】【了】【半】【天】【也】【看】【不】【出】【一】【点】【端】【倪】。 【陈】【沉】【跑】【的】【倒】【是】【不】【快】，【反】【正】【有】【一】【层】【阵】【法】【在】，【这】【三】【人】【飞】【的】【再】【快】【也】【冲】【不】【破】【阵】【法】。 【前】【面】【一】【个】【阵】【法】【无】【心】【圣】【母】【都】【要】老奇人高手论【叶】【天】【确】【实】【挺】【郁】【闷】【的】，【但】【队】【长】【强】【调】【了】，【特】【种】【兵】【就】【高】【要】【求】【自】【己】，【当】【一】【下】【女】【人】【没】【什】【么】，【利】【用】【女】【性】【的】【特】【点】，【这】【样】【更】【能】【隐】【瞒】【叶】【天】【的】【能】【力】。 【叶】【天】【的】【原】【则】【是】【不】【吃】【亏】，【不】【装】【女】【人】，【所】【以】，【打】【扮】【得】【比】【较】【中】【性】，【只】【是】，【经】【过】【多】【次】【万】【物】【精】【华】【改】【造】【后】，【给】【高】【胜】【寒】【等】【人】【的】【印】【象】【就】【是】，【震】【撼】！ “【菜】【鸟】，【你】【现】【在】【是】【我】【们】【火】【凤】【凰】【的】【金】【字】【招】【牌】。【不】【愧】【是】
【出】【现】【在】【秦】【非】【和】【赵】【桀】【面】【前】【的】【人】【形】【怪】【物】【身】【高】【大】【概】【在】【两】【米】【左】【右】，【身】【上】【穿】【着】【碎】【成】【布】【条】【的】【衣】【服】，【双】【眼】【血】【红】，【身】【上】【的】【血】【管】【全】【都】【暴】【起】，【右】【手】【臂】【比】【左】【手】【臂】【粗】【了】【一】【大】【圈】，【手】【已】【经】【没】【有】【了】【手】【应】【该】【有】【的】【样】【子】，【完】【全】【是】【一】【只】【巨】【大】【的】【怪】【物】【爪】【子】 “【嗷】！！！” 【怪】【物】【张】【嘴】【大】【吼】【了】【一】【声】，【向】【着】【秦】【非】【和】【赵】【桀】【扑】【了】【过】【来】，【挥】【起】【右】【手】【的】【大】【爪】【子】【向】【着】【二】【人】【抓】【了】
【郭】【卿】【梦】【的】【背】【后】【有】【郭】【家】【和】【陆】【家】【的】【扶】【持】，【从】【小】【到】【大】【没】【受】【过】【什】【么】【挫】【折】【也】【没】【人】【敢】【欺】【负】【她】，【一】【路】【顺】【风】【顺】【水】【地】【长】【大】。【唯】【独】【在】【感】【情】【上】，【她】【叛】【逆】【了】，【爱】【上】【了】【自】【己】【两】【位】【哥】【哥】【的】【把】【兄】【弟】。 【两】【人】【秘】【密】【地】【谈】【了】【半】【年】【的】【地】【下】【恋】，【谁】【都】【不】【敢】【主】【动】【把】【对】【方】【介】【绍】【给】【自】【己】【家】【的】【长】【辈】。 【温】【烨】【今】【年】【三】【十】【三】【岁】，【早】【已】【经】【过】【社】【会】【的】【打】【磨】。**【上】【到】【温】【老】【爷】【子】【下】【到】