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A survey released on Tuesday showed that Asians have overtaken Latinos as the largest group of new immigrants arriving each year in the United States.
Asian-Americans are not only the fastest-growing racial group in the country, but they also have the highest incomes and are the best-educated, according to The Rise of Asian Americans, a comprehensive Pew Research Center survey report.
They are more content than the general public with their lives, finances and the direction of the country, and they place more value on marriage, parenthood, hard work and career success, according to the survey.
The survey — based on 3,511 interviews with Asian-Americans — includes 728 Chinese-Americans. It was conducted from Jan 3 to March 27 in all 50 states, including Alaska, Hawaii and the District of Columbia.
"It is a great opportunity for the United States to have more Asians come over, because they bring both new capital and new ideas," Vernon W.C. Ching, former president of the Honolulu chapter of the US-China Peoples Friendship Association, told China Daily.
For example, economic development in China is happening so fast, and the Chinese-Americans would "indirectly help the economy of US", he said. "It is a development with profound political and economic implications."
As a Chinese-American born in Hawaii, Ching said an enhanced image of Chinese-Americans has been created by the increasing number of Chinese seeking higher education in the country.
Chinese immigrants first came to the US in significant numbers more than a century and a half ago — mainly as low-skilled laborers working as miners, peasants and railway builders, he said.
They endured generations of officially sanctioned racial prejudice, including the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, which barred all new immigration from China.
"One hundred years later, they are no longer the minority. They are well-educated and the most in demand hard workers right now," he said.
"The identification as an American-Chinese becomes an advantage for me because more and more Asians are coming to the US with investment and business opportunities," 27-year-old Jerry Chen of Palo Alto, California, told China Daily. "I understand the culture of both sides, and can speak fluent English and Mandarin."
Chinese-Americans not only play an important role in economic activities but also in politics.
"The American-Chinese has a better understanding of China's policy," Ching said.
Politically, Asian-Americans are more satisfied with the nation's direction, and generally rate Obama's performance as positive; they favor Democratic candidates and prefer bigger government than other Americans, according the survey.
Though many Asian-American don't like the "Tiger Mom" image of pushy, demanding Asian-American parents, 62 percent respondents said American parents are too soft on their kids.
"Socially, Chinese-Americans are very typical examples for placing a higher value on marriage and parenthood," Konghua He, chief of the American Chinese Women Federation, told China Daily in California.
"Most Chinese-Americans believe they have today's social status because of higher education and hard work, so they want their children to emulate their success mode," she said.
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