Sep 11, 2017 9:00 am

About a fifth of Americans cite 9/11 response as event that made them most proud of U.S.

A firefighter stands outside the FDNY Engine 10, Ladder 10 station near the September 11 Memorial site in New York City on Sept. 11, 2016. Services were being held to remember the 2,977 people who were killed in the 9/11 attacks in New York, the Pentagon and rural Pennsylvania. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
A firefighter stands outside the FDNY Engine 10, Ladder 10 station near the September 11 Memorial site in New York City on Sept. 11, 2016. Services were being held to remember the 2,977 people who were killed in the 9/11 attacks in New York, the Pentagon and rural Pennsylvania. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

About one-in-five Americans cite the country’s response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, as the time in their lives when they felt most proud of their country, according to a Pew Research Center survey conducted in summer 2016.

The survey, a collaboration between the Center and A+E Networks’ HISTORY, asked U.S. adults in an open-ended format to name the times or events during their lifetimes when they felt most proud of and most disappointed in the United States.

The most commonly cited moment of pride – volunteered by 19% of respondents – was the national response to the 9/11 attacks. Those who cited the 9/11 response offered a range of specific reasons for feeling proud, including the bravery of first responders and the way the nation united in the event’s aftermath, as well as the outpouring of sympathy for the victims of the attacks. (Other responses to the attacks, such as the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and the killing of Osama bin Laden, were counted separately in the survey.)

Overall, the survey found that the Sept. 11 attacks united Americans in a way that few other historical events have. About three-quarters of Americans (76%) named the attacks as one of the 10 events in their lifetimes that had the greatest impact on the U.S., a far larger share than for any other event, including the tech revolution, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and the moon landing. Regardless of gender, income or education level, or partisan affiliation, majorities of U.S. adults cited the 9/11 attacks among the 10 events that had the greatest impact on the country.

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Topics: Terrorism, National and Cultural Identity

Sep 11, 2017 6:59 am

Younger men play video games, but so do a diverse group of other Americans

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Young men make up a disproportionately large share of people who play video games in the United States. But about four-in-ten women and roughly a quarter of Americans ages 65 and older also say they play video games at least sometimes, according to a Pew Research Center survey conducted in March and April.

As with other types of technology, video games are most popular among young adults. Six-in-ten Americans ages 18 to 29 and 53% of those ages 30 to 49 say they play video games often or sometimes, compared with smaller shares in older age groups. The survey counts video games played on a computer, TV, game console or portable device, such as a mobile phone.

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Topics: Gender, Work and Employment, Lifestyle, Generations and Age, Internet Activities, Online Gaming

Sep 8, 2017 11:23 am

Key facts about Asian Americans, a diverse and growing population

The U.S. Asian population is diverse. A record 20 million Asian Americans trace their roots to more than 20 countries in East and Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent, each with unique histories, cultures, languages and other characteristics.

The 19 largest origin groups together account for 94% of the total Asian population in the U.S. New fact sheets for each of these Asian origin groups accompany this blog post. Each describes key demographic and economic characteristics of each group.

Here are some key findings about the nation’s Asian-origin population:

The U.S. Asian population grew 72% between 2000 and 2015 (from 11.9 million to 20.4 million), the fastest growth rate of any major racial or ethnic group. By comparison, the population of the second-fastest growing group, Hispanics, increased 60% during the same period.

Population growth varied across the 19 Asian origin groups in this analysis. Roughly half of the 19 groups more than doubled in size between 2000 and 2015, with Bhutanese-, Nepalese– and Burmese-origin populations showing the fastest growth over the period. Meanwhile, Laotians and Japanese had among the slowest growth rates among U.S. Asians in the past 15 years.

No single country-of-origin group dominates the U.S. Asian population, but the largest groups are of Chinese, Indian and Filipino origin. As of 2015, 24% of Asian Americans (4.9 million) were of Chinese origin, the largest single origin group. The next two largest origin groups are Indian-origin Asians, who accounted for 20% of the national Asian population (4.0 million), and Filipinos (19%, or 3.9 million). Those with roots in Vietnam, Korea and Japan easily clear the 1 million mark as well. The remaining 13 groups in this analysis account for just 12% of all U.S. Asians.

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Topics: Asia and the Pacific, Demographics, Race and Ethnicity, Population Trends, Asian Americans

Sep 7, 2017 12:01 pm

Democratic voters are increasingly likely to call their views liberal

Seven months into President Donald Trump’s administration, nearly half of all Democratic and Democratic-leaning registered voters describe their political views as liberal. The share of Democrats who describe themselves this way has steadily risen and is now 20 percentage points higher than in 2000.

Through the first half of 2017, more Democratic voters identify as liberal (48%) than as moderate (36%) or conservative (15%), based on an average of Pew Research Center surveys. In 2008, 41% of Democratic voters called themselves moderate, while 33% said they were liberal and 23% said they were conservative. And in 2000, Democratic voters who called their views moderate outnumbered liberals by 44% to 28%, while 23% said they were conservative.

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Topics: Political Attitudes and Values, Political Party Affiliation, Political Typology

Sep 7, 2017 10:01 am

Americans’ online news use is closing in on TV news use

The gap between the share of Americans who get news online and those who do so on television is narrowing.

As of August, 43% of Americans report often getting news online, just 7 percentage points lower than the 50% who often get news on television, according to a Pew Research Center survey conducted in August. This gap between the two news platforms was 19 points in early 2016, more than twice as large.

The share of Americans who often get news from TV – whether from local TV news, nightly network TV news or cable news – is down from 57% in early 2016. At the same time, the portion of Americans often getting news online, either from news websites/apps or social media, grew from 38% in early 2016 to 43% today.

What’s more, the decline in television news use occurs across all three types of TV news asked about in the survey – local, network and cable – but is greatest for local television news. As of August 2017, 37% of Americans said they often get local TV news, compared with 46% in early 2016.

The other two platforms asked about in the survey – radio and print newspapers – are about on par with last year in terms of reported consumption. A quarter of Americans often get news from radio and 18% do so from print newspapers.  Read More

Topics: Digital Media, News Media Trends, Internet Activities, Television, State of the News Media, Local News

Sep 6, 2017 2:00 pm

More Americans now say they’re spiritual but not religious

Some people may see the term “spiritual but not religious” as indecisive and devoid of substance. Others embrace it as an accurate way to describe themselves. What is beyond dispute, however, is that the label applies to a growing share of Americans.

About a quarter of U.S. adults (27%) now say they think of themselves as spiritual but not religious, up 8 percentage points in five years, according to a Pew Research Center survey conducted between April 25 and June 4 of this year. This growth has been broad-based: It has occurred among men and women; whites, blacks and Hispanics; people of many different ages and education levels; and among Republicans and Democrats. For instance, the share of whites who identify as spiritual but not religious has grown by 8 percentage points in the past five years.

To be clear, the survey did not directly ask respondents whether the label “spiritual but not religious” describes them. Instead, it asked two separate questions: “Do you think of yourself as a religious person, or not?” and “Do you think of yourself as a spiritual person, or not?” The results presented here are the product of combining responses to those two questions.

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Topics: Religion and Society, Religious Affiliation, Religious Beliefs and Practices, Religiously Unaffiliated

Sep 6, 2017 11:00 am

5 facts about Millennial households

Millennials are the largest living generation by population size (79.8 million in 2016), but they trail Baby Boomers and Generation Xers when it comes to the number of households they head. Many Millennials still live under their parents’ roof or are in a college dorm or some other shared living situation. As of 2016, Millennials (ages 18 to 35 in 2016) headed only 28 million households, many fewer than were headed by Generation X (ages 36 to 51 in 2016) or Baby Boomers (ages 52 to 70).

Even so, the latest available Census Bureau data indicate that Millennial-run households represent the largest group in some key categories, such as the number of households living in poverty.

Looking at households is important because many economic and spending decisions, such as whether to own or rent a home, tend to revolve around the household rather than the individual adult. Here are five facts about Millennial households:

1More Millennial households are in poverty than households headed by any other generation. In 2016, an estimated 5.3 million of the nearly 17 million U.S. households living in poverty were headed by a Millennial, compared with 4.2 million headed by a Gen Xer and 5.0 million headed by a Baby Boomer. The relatively high number of Millennial households in poverty partly reflects the fact that the poverty rate among households headed by a young adult has been rising over the past half century while dramatically declining among households headed by those 65 and older. In addition, Millennials are more racially and ethnically diverse than the other adult generations, and a greater share of Millennial households are headed by minorities, who tend to have higher poverty rates. Millennial heads of households are also more likely to be unmarried, which is associated with higher poverty.  Read More

Topics: Generations and Age, Household and Family Structure, Poverty, Homeownership, Millennials

Sep 1, 2017 1:00 pm

DACA has shielded nearly 790,000 young unauthorized immigrants from deportation

Nearly 790,000 young unauthorized immigrants have received work permits and deportation relief through the federal government’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program since it was created five years ago by President Barack Obama, according to the latest data released by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

The program, known as DACA, was created through an executive action Obama signed in August 2012.

It gives unauthorized immigrants who came to the U.S. before age 16 – a group sometimes called “Dreamers” – a chance to stay in the U.S. to study or work, provided they meet certain conditions such as being enrolled in high school or having a high school degree or GED equivalent, and not having a serious criminal conviction. Those approved for the program are given a work permit and protection from deportation for two years, and these benefits can be renewed.

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Topics: Education, Immigration, Unauthorized Immigration, Domestic Affairs and Policy, Immigration Trends, Generations and Age, Citizenship

Sep 1, 2017 10:00 am

Strong religious beliefs are only one part of Muslim American identity

Muslim women attend a prayer service celebrating Eid al-Fitr, the end of the Ramadan month of prayer and fasting, on June 25 in Stamford, Connecticut. (John Moore/Getty Images)
Muslim women attend a prayer service celebrating Eid al-Fitr, the end of the Ramadan month of prayer and fasting, on June 25 in Stamford, Connecticut. (John Moore/Getty Images)

Nearly all Muslim Americans (97%) say they take pride in being a member of the Islamic faith. But their devotion to core religious beliefs and practices is only part of a religious identity that also includes concerns about social justice and the environment.

The vast majority of U.S. Muslims say belief in God is essential (85%) to their religious identity, according to a Pew Research Center survey of 1,001 U.S. Muslims conducted between January and May of this year. An additional 10% say belief in God is “important but not essential.”

By comparison, the vast majority of American Christians also said believing in God is essential to their religious identity (86%), according to a 2014 Pew Research Center survey. And an additional 10% of U.S. Christians said this belief is important (though not essential) to what being Christian means to them.

For many, being Muslim also is tied to love for the Prophet Muhammad (72% say this is essential to what being Muslim means to them). About six-in-ten consider as essential the commitment to observe the religious teachings in the Quran and Sunnah (59%), two important sources of guidance for the Islamic faithful.

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Topics: Religious Affiliation, Religious Beliefs and Practices, Muslims and Islam, Asian Americans

Aug 31, 2017 11:02 am

Smartphones help blacks, Hispanics bridge some – but not all – digital gaps with whites

This is the fourth in a series of posts about how different demographic groups in the U.S. have fared in the digital age.

Blacks and Hispanics remain less likely than whites to own a traditional computer or have high-speed internet at home, according to a Pew Research Center survey conducted in fall 2016. But mobile devices are playing important roles in helping to bridge these differences.

Roughly eight-in-ten whites (83%) report owning a desktop or laptop computer, compared with 66% of blacks and 60% of Hispanics. There are also substantial racial or ethnic differences in broadband adoption, with whites more likely than either blacks or Hispanics to report having a broadband connection at home. (There were not enough Asian respondents in the sample to be broken out into a separate analysis.)

But despite these inequalities, blacks and Hispanics have mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers in shares similar to whites. There are differences between Hispanics born inside and outside the U.S.: 88% of native-born Hispanics own a smartphone, compared with 62% of Hispanics born abroad. About three-quarters of whites and blacks own a smartphone.

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Topics: Race and Ethnicity, Digital Divide, Mobile