Newport Beach-Red, Blue, or mostly White?

Last month on LA Eastside, Browne Molyneux posted an article sparked by another article by the LA Times.
While it was done in satire, it does bring up some valid points. Why if certain cities or neighborhoods are held to higher standards of diversity as compared to those areas that are mostly white? Is the fact that some of these cities have more money and influence to make their cities look multicultural?
Browne makes remark:

“I discovered that Newport Beach wasn’t as white as you could get, Newport Coast was as white as you could get. Apparently in Newport Coast there are lots of Starbucks and lots of shopping opportunities and even more if you go to Newport Beach.”

As a counter, Gustavo Arellano, a writer for the OC Weekly, make the point:

“Newport Coast ain’t as white as you get in Orange County. It has a bunch of Persians and Asians. As white as you get is Balboa–the Island and the Penninsula.”

You know what? I agree with them. It was something I never thought about until reading this article. I lived on Balboa Island for 9 years, and guess what? My neighbors were white, and I honestly don’t recall much ethnic diversity on Balboa Island unless you count the the workers at the restaurants or gardening or construction. It sounds kind of harsh, but it is true. Same goes for the Peninsula. Again most of the ethnic diversity is relegated to those that provide services to those that live there, or the beach going tourists.
Does Newport Beach lack diversity? According to 2005-2007 Census study, 89% of the population of Newport Beach was white. The second highest was Asian at 6.5%.
Not very diverse or multicultural. Unless one counts surfing, sailing, roller blading, tennis, shopping, and golfing as other cultures.

2 Comments so far

  1. frazgo on January 24th, 2009 @ 9:33 am

    Interesting, and to be truthful I never paid much attention to it. My cousins all grew up in Anaheim and over the years it has become increasingly diverse. I spend a lot of time there or in Cypress on weekends with my youngest for basketball game, or Bolsa Chica for boogie boarding in the summer and my impression has been the area is as diverse as the rest of So Cal. No matter where you go there are pockets where one group tends to congregate because of similar backgrounds and familiarity in a new home. I don’t see it as segregation as from where I sit there is a lot of blending, co-mingling and intermarriage of ideas and culture. I do believe the latter two is why So Cal is such a vibrant place to live.


  2. browne on January 28th, 2009 @ 10:45 pm

    "No matter where you go there are pockets where one group tends to congregate because of similar backgrounds and familiarity in a new home, " Frazgo.

    This is true, but the only time it’s viewed as negative is when people are poor (rural white people) or ethnic in urban areas. No respect is given to neighborhoods of one stripe when they don’t fit in the "golden" demographic: white and middle class. To me that doesn’t seem fair. I like Newport Beach BUT I like Eastlos too, they are both beautiful places, why must this tragic slant always be put on ethnic neighborhoods? Why the back handed compliments? In this case of this article on Compton:
    http://www.latimes.com/news/local/crime/la-me-outthere23-2009jan23,0,6500846.story

    Yeah a headline of homicide rates plunge is really going to help with the PR of that neighborhood.

    Why can’t it just be a cool up and coming or just discovered place by the mainstream?

    The problem is the double standard by people in power to lift up some places and tear down others.

    I’m glad you saw my point fejsez, no disrespect to the OC. The few times I’ve been out there (mainly in Costa Mesa) the people were very cool. It is like OC is what Long Beach wants to be, but can’t. I think Long Beach has idenity issues it isn’t sure if it wants to be Orange County or Los Angeles.



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