LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Published on .

Jews and Muslims

In the Pulse story “Jews and Muslims� (March 2003), the accompanying chart compares the demographics of religious and nonreligious Jews, but sources other than CUNY's 2001 American Jewish Identity Survey were not identified.

CUNY and the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) have been promoting the number of Muslim Americans as 1.1 million to 2.8 million. But the former has used a faulty methodology, which even before Sept. 11 was unlikely to arrive at an accurate count. As for the latter, its lowball of the number is based upon not counting African American and other converts; immigrants from India, sub-Saharan Africa and East Asia; and refugees from regions like the former Yugoslavia, Somalia and Chechnya. If you apply this methodology, my wife (East Asian), son (American born) and I (convert) are automatically exempted. I think that unpublished commercial research is demonstrating that the range of 6 million to 7 million is valid. I am very concerned that CUNY and CIS are engaged in politics, not demographics. And that should be reported, or their counts disqualified.

ABDULKADER THOMAS

Founder and publisher

American Journal of Islamic Finance

www.ajif.org

Frequent Shoppers

In the feature story “Race, Ethnicity and the Way We Shop� (February 2003), you presented a chart, titled “Frequent Shoppers,� that does not contain the values for the bars shown for each ethnic group. The source of this graph is Simmons Market Research. Can you provide the values for each bar on this graph? As a producer of windows and doors that are sold through home improvement outlets, we are interested in this information.

STEVE NORRIS

Pella Corporation

Pella, Iowa

Dear Steve:

We're glad you found the information useful. Here are the values for the graph:

FREQUENT SHOPPERS

Whites are the most likely of all racial groups to have visited a home improvement store frequently in the past three months. But they are the least likely of all groups to have visited a home electronics or home furnishings store.

INDEX* OF AMERICANS WHO HAVE GONE TO THE FOLLOWING TYPE OF STORE FIVE OR MORE TIMES IN THE PAST THREE MONTHS, BY RACE AND ETHNICITY:

WHITE BLACK ASIAN HISPANIC
Home improvement 107 65 65 89
Home electronics 85 176 195 140
Home furnishings 96 115 132 115
*The national average is 100. For example, whites are 7 percent more likely than the average American to have made five or more trips to a home improvement store in the past three months, but they are 15 percent less likely to have shopped at an electronics store as frequently.
Source: Simmons Market Research, 2002
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