"survey says hindus thrive in u s"
http://suratiundhiyu.wordpress.com/ VIPUL M DESAI Survey Says Hindus Thrive in U.S. 1 Over half of Hindu Indian-American adults live in households earning at least $00,000$ annually, compared with 34% of non-Hindu Indian Americans, the study said. A study of the lifestyles and attitudes of Asian-Americans based on their religion has suggested that Indian-American Hindus are the most educated and best-paid group in the country. In terms of education and income, Hindus are at the top of the socioeconomic ladder not only among Asian-American religious groups but also among all the largest U.S. religious groups, the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, based in Washington, D.C., saidin a report. The researchers said it was the first comprehensive data collection from Hindus living in America, the vast majority of whom are of Indian descent. But Vinay Lal, professor of Asian-American Studies at the University of California and author of The Other Indians: Politics and Culture of South Asians in America, has criticized the study for presenting a narrow, nave and inaccurate portrayal of the situation for Indians living in the U.S. Mr. Lal told India Real Time that the survey provided a comforting picture of the nature of the American immigration experience that was highly inaccurate and masked the reality for thousands of Indian Americans who work in low paid and low skilled jobs in the country. As well as a professional elite, we have significant numbers of Indians who work in places like Dunkin Donuts or working where they are exploited, for instance in some ship yards, Mr. Lal said. The problem with these reports always is that they don't get into those differences it disguises some of the struggles within this community, he added. Mr. Lal also questioned the premise of a survey that uses religion as the main category for identifying respondents, calling it a colonial interpretation of the Asian community. It goes back 200 years, they [colonialists] held to the view that in the Indian Subcontinent religion was by far the most important identity before you are American you are a Hindu or a Muslim. Before you are anything else, your religion is what differentiates you. In his book, Mr. Lal gives examples of groups of Indians scraping a living in America, such as 2 taxi drivers in New York who must earn at least $ 50 a day just to cover costs of petrol and renting their cab. In the Pew Forum survey, those who identified themselves as Indian-American Hindus were significantly more likely to have studied to post-graduate level (58%)$compared to 36% of non-Hindu Indian-Americans and 12% of the general public. 1 Over half (51%)$of Hindu Indian-American adults live in households earning at least $00,000 annually, compared with 34% of non-Hindu Indian-Americans, the study said. Some commentators suggested that the prosperity of Hindus in the U.S. was a result of the success of higher caste Hindus in India who had moved abroad as highly skilled migrants. But Mr. Lal pointed out that although Indians who came to America after visa reforms in 1965 did so to pursue higher education; they later brought their families who were not so well educated. These people go into other businesses such as owning motels, he said. There might be eight to 10 family members who are actually working in the motel, many of them are not getting wages just board and lodging. These complications are not captured by grand statistics in this report, Mr. Lal said. The study is giving the broad parameters of this community and trying to show that this is the genius of America that people can come here from anywhere in the world and they can achieve, he added. Cary Funk, a senior researcher on the Pew Forum's study, said it was a representative survey of all U.S. Asians, which is pretty rare. We were analyzing the results among the largest religious groups with any group average it's always true that there is a diversity of experiences behind the average, Ms. Funk said. The report doesn't try to go into details of the reasons [behind the statistics] but we do try to recognize some of the major factors, for instance selective immigration, she added. The proportion of Asian Americans in the U.S. has increased from 1% of the population in 1965 to 5.8% in 2011, according to the latest census. Over half of Hindus surveyed (59%)$regarded themselves as very different from the typical American, compared to 53% of all Asian Americans questioned. The Pew Research Center found that Christians make up 42% of Asian Americans, followed by 26% who class themselves as unaffiliated (atheist, agnostic or nothing in particular). Buddhists account for about one-in-seven Asian Americans (14%), followed by Hindus (10%), Muslims (4%)$and Sikhs (1%), the study said. Followers of other religions make up 2% of U.S. Asians. Hindus were the group with the highest retention rate - 81% of those raised as Hindus told the researchers they remained Hindus, 12% were now agnostic, atheist or nothing in particular, and the rest had switched religion or did not give a current faith. Politically, a large majority of Hindus in the survey (72%)$lent towards the Democratic Party compared to 52% of all Asian Americans. The findings were based on telephone interviews with 3,511 Asian American adults across all states and included the six largest Asian groups in the U.S. population: Chinese, Filipino, Indian, Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese. Joanna Sugden is freelance journalist living in Delhi. Before coming to India in 2011$she spent four-and-a-half years as a reporter at The Times of London, covering religion and education.You can follow her on Twitter@jhsugden.