Minorities Might Not Play in Hollywood, but They Dominate L.A. Business

As we've pointed out before, Los Angeles' most high-profile industry, Hollywood, might as well exist in the era of apartheid. The latest research from UCLA shows, for example, that minorities captured only 6.5 percent of the lead roles on major-network scripted TV programs.

In the film and television biz, 94 percent of CEOs and chairs of studios were found to be white and 100 percent of them were male, the school found. 

The rest of the world, as you well know, is quite different. All you have to do, Hollywood, is look out the nearest window.

Los Angeles is about three-quarters nonwhite. About half of us here have some Latino heritage. And just-released U.S. Census data reveals that a majority of businesses in Los Angeles County are minority-owned.

Sort of.

You see, while 55 percent of businesses in L.A. are owned by people of color, Latinos now compose the largest ethnicity in California. So you could say many are majority owned.

But that's a discussion for another time.

The Census says we also led the nation in the number of Asian-American–owned firms. We came in second place for the number of African-American–owned businesses.

"Collectively, Los Angeles County was home to 631,218 minority-owned firms: 332,967 Hispanic, 213,203 Asian, 81,563 black or African-American, 11,081 American Indian and Alaska Native, and 3,798 Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander," the Census said in a statement. "Consequently, with 3.2 percent of the nation’s total population (according to the Census Bureau’s July 1, 2012, population estimates), the county was home to 7.9 percent of its minority-owned businesses in 2012."

Nearly a third of the businesses in the county are Latino-owned, the bureau says. Nearly one in five is owned by Asian-Americans.

The Census says there's been a 46.3 percent increase in the number of Latino-owned businesses nationwide between 2007 and 2012.

Now, if only Hollywood could open its eyes and stop pretending it exists inside a white fortress.


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