Population: Alaskan Native (Inuit)
The Alaskan Native (Inuit) population is growing but at a rate that is slowing due to an aging population. There will still be significant growth in the Anchorage/Matanuska-Susitna area. But there are projected loses in the Southeast Region of Alaska. Currently the Inuit shares it’s population ranking with the American Indian and they account for only 2.4 percent of our total population but 1.5 percent of the 2.4 percent accounts for the combining with another race. Keeping that in mind that means 0.9 percent of our population is Inuit/American Indian. Social
When looking at the economic ramifications of the Inuit one has to look far beyond birth rates and population size and you have to examine products that the Inuit bring to the world market. With that being said the Inuit population hunts seal and whale but in 2009 the European Union issued a ban on seal products. Although there is an Inuit exemption written into the bill this has effectively killed the market for products containing seal. Seal is one of the Inuit's major products for the world market. If the Inuit can not earn a living they can not support their families and birth rates will slow while death rates stay at a steady rate. Environmental
The implications of the environment must be looked at when talking about the Inuit people since they are some of the last hunter/gathers of North America, still living much like they did before the westerners came to Alaska are forever changed this last frontier. With that in mind they still eat marine mammals, caribou and fish but now they contend with contaminants that weren’t there before. Dealing with these extra stressors has also had an impact on the population for they feel eating western food in dangerous. Cultural
The Alaskan Native has been around for thousands of years. And before the Russia came across the Bering Strait the Inuit people were thriving on their own. Currently the Alaskan Native only makes up 17% of Alaska’s population. This number is disturbing to me, where are the Inuit’s going? The environment has changed since the Caucasian settlers arrived which I discussed earlier. All these factors have to be considered when looking at the history of the Inuit people and their future. Although, Alaska is thriving her native people are not. Plagued with social problems and substance abuse the future of this culture seems to be holding on by a think thread.
The Alaskan Native see more teen pregnancies then those of there counterpart the Alaskan White teen. When compared it’s doubled the birth rate. This leads to an undereducated population further adding to the problems stated above. The trends show that this isn’t letting up and historically has always been a problem. Conclusion
Although it’s said that the population of the Alaskan Native is growing albeit slow still growing I am still left with concern when you look at the entire picture and not just population growth. We have a large problem all around with the Alaskan Native. Not only the substance abuse issues but the problem of trying to at least maintain a small population of “pure bloodlines”. This is important not only to the people to carry on their traditions and heritage but to the world as a whole. Their way of life needs to be preserved and shared with future generations and my fear is that with time it will be lost. Lost to alcoholism, drugs, crime, pollution of their food sources, bans of their means of income and premature death. Sources
6. Permanent Fund Dividend Division. (n.d.). Retrieved 2 14, 2014, from Alaska Department Of Revenue: http://pfd.alaska.gov/
7. Quinn, E. (2013, 11 29). Eye on the Arctic - Why the...
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