Health Care

1 in 6 newlywed spouses are of different race or ethnicity

1 in 6 newlywed spouses are of different race or ethnicity

The Supreme Court that year ruled in the landmark Loving v. Virginia case that marriage across racial lines was legal throughout the United States.

The findings mark a social turnaround from 1967, when a mere 3 percent of new marriages was interracial.

Asians were most likely to intermarry in 2015, with 29 percent of newlywed Asians married to someone of a different race or ethnicity, followed by Hispanics at 27 percent, blacks at 18 percent and whites at 11 percent.

A February poll by Pew found that 39 percent of respondents say marrying someone of a different race is good for society. Since 1980, the number of blacks who chose to marry someone of a different race or ethnicity rose from 5 per cent to 18 per cent. Whites also have become more accepting of intermarriage, with the rates increasing from 4 per cent to 11 per cent during that same time period.

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But black-and-white couples are not leaders in USA intermarriage, according to the Pew analysis. Those rates go up even higher for those born in the USA - to 46 percent for Asian newlyweds and 39 percent for Hispanic newlyweds. Only 10 per cent of white women married outside their race or ethnicity, while only 12 per cent of black women were involved in intermarriage - half the rate of black men.

When it comes to explaining this urban-rural divide, there are many possible factors.

According to a new study released on Thursday, more and more Americans are marrying people of different races and ethnicities. Only 24 percent of people living in rural areas agreed with that statement.

The most common or ethnic pairing among newlywed intermarried couples is one Hispanic and one white spouse (42 percent).

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Pew had analyzed figures from the U.S. Census Bureau and found that 2015 showed a fivefold increase of spouses of different races or ethnicities over 1967.

Differences in racial composition of metropolitan and non-metropolitan populations may also account for some of the gap: 83 percent of newlyweds in non-metro areas are white, compared to 62 percent in metro areas. "Asian newlyweds with some college are somewhat less likely to be immigrants, and this may contribute to the higher rates of intermarriage for this group", the Pew report suggests. Most Republicans (60 percent) say the rise of interracial marriages doesn't make much of a difference.

Las Vegas and Santa Barbara follow a similar pattern. Blacks and whites were intermarried at 18% and 11%, respectively.

One one hand, Asheville, North Carolina, where only 3 percent of newlyweds are intermarried and 85 percentof the population is white, fits with the idea that diversity-or lack thereof-drives intermarriage rates. "I can't know for sure what explains that, but we do know that acceptance of intermarriage does tend to be lower in the South and in the Midwest, and I suspect that might be playing a role there".

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