Fast Facts
The average age of a Samoan in the US is 24.  Among Pacific Islanders we are the 2nd youngest group.  Additionally, compared to the total US population whose average age is 35, we are practically babes. These statistics indicate to us that we haven't even reached our prime!
 
Samoa Sa'o
NYC Follow Up
Written by Staff Writer   

NYC Polynesian Count

Data possibly skewed

We received some comments, which are highly welcomed, about our NYC report.  We quote:

"As any Polynesian knows when filling out forms, they always ask your ethnicity.  The box always reads Asian/Pacific Islander.  It is at this moment that we ask ourselves, "is that me?"  Some of can safely say yes.  The Ah Sus, the Wongs, the Ah Mus, etc.  Any Samoan who somewhere in their ancestry can trace one of their  progenetors to  Asia.  But, what of the Samoans who if there is an early non-Samoan progenetor they were of German or English descent.  Then, this form fails to capture accurate data."

Yes, we have all filled out this form from time to time. But, it appears that the census bureau took this into consideration.  As we pulled up the actual census form it was clear that the Feds broke up each ethnicity into their own category. 

Samoans are the second most numerous group of Polynesians in the US

As we looked into further into the cesus report  We found some more interesting facts about Samoans in the US.  About 1 out of every 4 Pacific Islander in the US is a Samoan (22.5%.)  Only Native Hawaiians are more numerous than Samoans.  As a result, Samoans have their own category on the census form. 

Other  facts of interest are that Samoan households average 4.43 persons.  The family income is around $41,000, and about 1/3 of the Samoan households own their house.

Source: Census Report 2000

Other Forms

This reader, who requested to remain annonymous, had a good point.  Since, many Federally funded programs which attempt to help Pacific Islanders, allot funds to certain programs according to ethnicity. Then, If these programs continue to inclue Asian with Pacific Islander, the programs may not be helping the Pacific Islanders as intended because the Pacific Islander population is significantly smaller that the Asian population.
 
Fa'asamoa Mai
Written by Afatasi   

Fa'asamoa Mai

Are we in danger of losing our language?

With each new generation we seem to be speaking less and less to our children.  I'm not talking about those still in the islands but those who have moved away from Samoa.  Even the 30-something generation is more familiar with English than Fa'asamoa.  As it has already been stated "language defines culture."  Since many of us are growing up in the English culture, it is probably the reason we use the English language to speak to others because it defines our lives. 

All of us are familar with the numerous cognates of the Samoan language.  Some we might have even thought were Samoan.  Take for example the word for bear (urosa).  That sounds nothing like bear.  But, that is because our culture didn't need a word for bear.  There aren't any in Samoa.  Initially it comes from ursa the latin word for bear.  (Ursa Major)  big bear or big dipper.  This word more than likely entered our language from the early missionaries to Samoa.  They would have taken the word from the Holy Bible and then translated it.

Today however, I have heard outrageous cognates like the use of the word sali.  Am I to assume that this is Samoan for sorry?  It is true we don't have a word for sorry but, that can be traced back to our culture (I address this in another article.)  So if we are borrowing English words and Samoanizing them are we really speaking Samoan or is it an unusual dialect of English?


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