by Ray Hayes

The city of Houston is home to the Houston Rockets, Mayor Annise Parker, Drive-through liquor barns, Space Center and much more. Nicknamed the nation of Texas, Houston has a new banner to hang at this year’s state fair. It has recently become the most diverse city in America surpassing New York for the honor. 

The state of Texas does not have a rich history when it comes to welcoming diversity, but Houston has since helped to change that. The city of Houston has a Democratic minority mayor and has a strong pro-immigrant population. According to the LA Times, it has also, “potentially become one of the battlefronts in Texas over the city’s ‘don’t ask’ ‘sanctuary policy,’ which prohibits police from inquiring about the immigration status of a person who hasn’t been arrested.”

Beginning in the 1970’s the city saw its first major population shift when large numbers of Vietnamese entered the city.  In the ‘80’s and 90’s the Latino population exploded with people searching for cheaper housing and employment opportunities. By 2010, the Latino population had more than doubled becoming the ethnic majority surpassing the White population. Now the Hispanic population is almost more than the Black and White population combined.  Many demographic experts have reported that Houston is the roadmap to what you can expect U.S. cities to look like in the coming decade “as whites learn to live as minorities in the American heartland.”

Let’s take a look at the changing demographics in Houston from 1970 – 2010

Source: Minnesota Population Center, National Historical Geographic Information System

Although the state of Texas is not as diverse as Houston, we can expect things to change as time goes on and more minorities moving into other cities in search for more opportunities.