Black History Month highlights not only past achievements, but continued progress in the African-American community. There are just under 2 million black-owned businesses, representing a gain of more than 60 percent in just 5 recent years. These businesses employed more than 920,000 people — a growth of more than one-fifth in the same period. Retail trade, health care and social assistance sectors account for 27 percent of black-owned business revenue, which totals more than $137 billion. Among cities, New York has the most black-owned businesses, at just over 8 percent of the U.S. total, followed by Chicago, Houston, and Detroit. You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau, online at <www.census.gov>.
Sunday, February 17th. This month — and some sources cite this date — is the anniversary of the 1766 birth of Thomas Malthus in Dorking, England. Given that birthplace, he perhaps naturally became an economist, demographer and statistician. He’s remembered for “The Principle of Population,” a 1798 essay foretelling widespread famine caused by population growth far outstripping the food supply. While the forecast remains unrealized, his theory of demand-supply mismatches was a precursor to later theories about the Great Depression. When Malthus wrote his essay, the world population was a little under 1 billion. Currently, the global population is about 7.1 billion people. Profile America is in its 16th year as a public service of the U.S. Census Bureau.
Saturday, February 16th. Los Angeles was the first municipality to establish a publicly owned veterinary hospital. The spay and neuter center opened this week in 1971. Veterinary medicine goes far beyond reproduction control, of course. Veterinary organizations have established February as National Pet Dental Month, focusing on the problems our animal companions can experience through poor oral health. In fact, they track quite closely with the negative health consequences in our own haphazard dental hygiene. Across the nation, there are over 28,000 veterinary offices where Americans can brush up on pets’ oral health. You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau, online at <www.census.gov>.