The concept of demographic threat (or demographic bomb) is a term used in political conversation to refer to population increases from within a minority ethnic group in a given country that are perceived as threatening to alter the ethnic identity of that country.
Thousands of Bahraini Shia Muslims protested in March 2011 against the Bahraini government's naturalisation policy of granting citizenship to Sunni Muslims from other countries serving in the military of Bahrain.
There was a demographic competition during 19th and 20th centuries, between a French-speaking Catholic minority and an English-speaking Protestant majority.
In Estonia, one of the causes of the Singing Revolution was the concern over the demographic threat to the national identity posed by the influx of individuals from foreign ethnic groups to work on such large Soviet development projects as phosphate mining.
Mass immigration from Arab and Muslim countries, and the high fertility rate among these immigrants are described by many conservatives as posing a demographic threat to Europe, especially France. Some of those conservatives have claimed that today about a third of newborns in France have Muslim parents.
Many Hindu Indians see Muslims as a "demographic threat" because of their large population growth due to high fertility rates and because of the high rate of illegal immigration from Bangladesh.
In the 1950s, Shoham Melamad found that the high fertility rate of Arabs was viewed as a demographic threat to the Jewish nation. Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, however, stated that Arabs in Israel should be treated equally to any other Israeli citizens and be allowed to have children just like any other citizen. A 1967 Maariv editorial suggested that Jews should be encouraged to have large families, while Palestinians in the West Bank, Gaza Srip and in Israel should be encouraged to adopt birth control measures. Schnitzer also advocated for the adoption of an open policy encouraging Arabs to emigrate from Israel.
In 2003, Benjamin Netanyahu opined that if the percentage of Arab citizens of Israel rises above its current level of about 20 percent, Israel would not be able to retain a Jewish demographic majority, the basis of Israel's self-definition as a "Jewish democratic state". Netanyahu's comments were criticized as racist by Arab Knesset members and the Association for Civil Rights in Israel. In May 2009, Michael Oren wrote an article in Commentary in which he discussed the "Arab Demographic Threat" as one of "Seven Existential Threats" facing Israel. In 2005, Shimon Peres told US officials that Israel had "lost" land in the Negev "to the Bedouin" and would need to take steps to "relieve" the "demographic threat". In 2010, Netanyahu warned in a government meeting that a Negev "without a Jewish majority" would pose "a palpable threat". In February 2014, then Israeli finance minister Yair Lapid said failure to establish a Palestinian state would leave Israel facing a demographic threat that could undermine its Jewish and democratic nature.
In Northern Ireland, Protestants are more likely to favour continued political union with the UK, while Catholics are more likely to favour political union with the rest of Ireland. When Ireland was partitioned in the 1920s and Northern Ireland came into existence, Protestants were roughly 60% of the population, as a result of higher fertility rates among Catholics, this has come down to less than 50% in the 2011 census for the first time, while Catholics make up slightly less than 50% and slightly less than Protestants. There is debate over whether and to what extent this trend will continue and it's possible impact on the political situation.
Russia fears the "demographic threat" posed by the potential for "large-scale Chinese immigration" to its thinly populated far east. Illegal immigration of Chinese nationals is a special concern.
Mormons were repeatedly expelled from communities, partly because of their bloc voting.
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- Shenhav, 2006, p. 191.
- Does A High Arab Birthrate Threaten Israel?
- Masalha, 2000, pp. 200-202.
- Sedan, Gil (18 December 2003). "Netanyahu: Israel's Arabs are the real demographic threat". Haaretz.
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- "Seven Existential Threats". www.commentarymagazine.com. Archived from the original on 2009-05-08. Retrieved 2009-05-13.
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- Masalha, Nur (2000). Imperial Israel And The Palestinians: The Politics of Expansion. Pluto Press. ISBN 0-7453-1615-8
- Shenhav, Yehouda (2006). The Arab Jews: A Postcolonial Reading of Nationalism, Religion, and Ethnicity. Stanford University Press. ISBN 0-8047-5296-6
- Pat Buchanan, The Death of the West (2001)