“Lies, dam* lies, and statistics,” is a phrase popularized by Mark Twain. I’m concerned with the latter and its implications for the former (I’ll forgo damning anyone’s falsehoods).
In Ms. Lempert’s article, “The reckoning: San Mateo then and now,” the data and its implications raise questions.
About San Mateo County she stated, “The Black population dropped from 6% in 1960 to 1.96% today as part of a Black exodus from the Bay Area between 2000-2010.” I went to the U.S. Census and compared data from 1960 versus 2019.
In 2019, the Black population in the county was 2.8%; in 1960, the Negro population (the term used in the census) totaled 2.4%. During this time, the Black population actually increased from 1,691 to 21,464.
Next, the Black population percentage decline slightly in the Bay Area over six decades from 8.6% to 7%. But that was not due to a mass exodus; in fact, the number of Blacks increased by about 100,000. While the overall Bay Area population exploded in six decades by 2 million, the Black population was fairly stable.
The mass exodus was among whites; almost a half million left (a decline from 88% to 39%). That is huge.
Asians and Hispanics, while totaling less that 100,000 in 1960, are now over 2 million. This influx is the demographic supernova changing the face of the Bay Area. These groups now comprise half of the population.
These are the facts from the U.S. Census. Are they lies, dam* lies, or statistics?
Boynton Beach, Florida