Americans Are Once Again Divided by Race

Like a lightning flash in a stormy sky, the Trayvon Martin case has illuminated the depth of the impasse between white and nonwhite America. But a similar dynamic looms less visibly behind Washington’s standoff between a Democratic coalition that relies on overwhelming support from minorities and a Republican coalition still almost entirely dependent on the votes of whites, especially older ones. …

The diversity remaking America could be a source of rejuvenation and innovation, but today it is reinforcing our ferocious partisan polarization. The Martin case and the Washington stalemate both capture the escalating collision of perspectives and priorities between a growing, mostly younger minority community and our aging white population—what I’ve called the brown and the gray. [cont.]

Ron Brownstein, National Journal