There are lots of songs written about moving to the country. They usually talk about the clean air, the slow pace of life, the beauty of nature, and the friendly people. They over-romanticize the true reality of rural life. They also give the impression that everyone really wants to leave the city behind and get back to the land. The fact is, however, that is not what most people want to do. According to the latest census data, most people are doing just the opposite: moving to the city.

The 2010 census data shows that the overall population increased, but it was only large urban areas that saw their population grow.

This shift in population is not a new trend, but it represents a continuing problem for rural communities. Not only does a declining population limit economic activity and reduce the labor force, it lessens a rural area’s political power at both the state and federal level. The census data released last week will be used to redraw state and federal Congressional districts. But the loss of rural residents is also a problem for urban areas.

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