Over the weekend I was catching up on some news and ended up on The Root’s website browsing through articles. John McWhorter’s provocatively titled article, “Let’s Stop Being Angry at Biracial People” instantly caught my attention.

As I read I anticipated McWhorter delving into the history of the one-drop rule or presenting a new idea to the trite topic that has been discussed ad nauseum. Instead, the accusatory tone coupled with a number of generalizations, left me floored. And by the article’s end I wondered, why does this problem continue to be left at the doorstep of Blacks as if we are marching in the streets with fluorescent signs that read, “Hey, biracial people, you have to identify as Black?”

McWhorter’s piece recounts his childhood experience with one of his biracial classmates considered black because that’s the way Whites would see him. Later McWhorter reflected on how his biracial godchildren, who have a White mother and Black father, would later have to identify as Black. Obviously this issue hits close to home for him. According to McWhorter’s presumptions, the line of reasoning Black people use when claiming biracials are Black, is that they will be treated as such by a White cop. Really? Then he tosses in Obama as an example and the “uproar” Black folks were in when Tiger Woods told the world he was “Cablasian.” Much of the article relies on his personal observations, the assumption that Black people even care about this issue and conclusions based on his assumptions. Talk about failed logic.

McWhorter writes:
A standard line on why degree and mixture are not supposed to matter for black-white hybrid folk is that the cops will always treat you as black. Even President Obama trotted out this line in defending his classification of himself as black rather than biracial…

One is that for black people to get angry at people like Woods for calling themselves something other than black means enforcing the old “one drop” rule as vigilantly as whites used to do…

The second reason is even sadder. The idea that if, say, a Troy doesn’t “know what color he is,” then he is to be giggled about at best and jumped on at worst is about shame. Why, after all, does someone who refuses to identify as black make some black people angry?

That anger comes from insult — specifically, a sense that Troy must think he’s better than they are. After all, why couldn’t they just allow that Troy has had a different life from their?

That tongue clucking and anger at the Tiger Woodses among us is about insecurity, a legacy of slavery and Jim Crow. To really know that black is beautiful means feeling not the slightest mental pinprick when café au lait people refuse to call themselves only “black.”

Although I understand McWhorter’s efforts, as much as I understand it is his right to write an Op-ed piece, for the life of me, I can’t understand why this is being presented to Black people as if it’s our issue. Nor do I know that enough Black people care about how someone self-identifies. I certainly don’t know anyone who does.

Black people were not the inventors of racism in this country; they were (and are) the victims of it. When will these articles be dropped off at the doorsteps of Whites? After all, it was our White founding fathers that created the “one drop rule” in the first place. Please let’s stop pretending there are not large numbers of White people who would be petrified if their son or daughter brought home a biracial baby. And in some cases, possibly disown their child and grandchild. I rarely hear of these stories happening in Black families. News flash- countless Blacks have biracial people in their family, and we don’t go stomping and pouting demanding they accept their “Blackness.”

The biracial issue is a lot less simplistic than it is conveyed in McWhorter’s article. I think the concern, if any, for some Blacks, lies not in how biracial people choose to identify, but the hope that they know the history of their Black side. Also, love and value it. And that it is not seen as inferior to their White half.

When conversations about Mariah Carey arose, who in the past allegedly went out of her way to claim she was White, the annoyance was that Mariah wanted to be Black when it was convenient in terms of her music career. The uproar wasn’t just that she didn’t say she was Black. Yes, there are Black people who will consider anyone whose skin is pigmented, including biracials, Black. And there are those who will insist biracial people consider themselves Black and only Black. But not enough for this to be considered a “Black issue.”

Further, please tell me what White person is looking at Tiger Woods and considering him white, Asian or biracial? The only reason White people like to point out the President is biracial is because, well, he’s the gotdamn President. It’s another way to take away the pride we feel in having the first Black President by saying, “Well really he’s biracial.”

I don’t mind the discourse around some of the more serious issues biracial people face in this country. But I certainly am tired of the accusations as if Black people en masse hate biracial people, give them hell and demand them to own their Blackness. If I never read another article similar to McWhorter’s, it would be too soon.

  • EmpressDivine

    I know y’all gotta do it but LOL @ the disclaimer at the end!

    I’m just a commenter so I can go in! John McWhorter is an asshole plain and simple. He’s a self-hating idiot that kowtows to the conservatives. I don’t respect a damn thing he has to say.

    As for the article, I believe that Bene has a point. Black folks have historically been more accepting of biracial and multiracial people with Black blood. I think this is mostly because of the one-drop rule (created by whites) and the fact the majority of the time we were the ones taking care of them. They lived in our communities and were raised as black people. They were also treated as black people by the outside world. When black people do get upset by mixed people not “claiming” to be black, I think it is largely due to hurt and feelings of rejection. It’s difficult to prop someone up the majority of their life and then they pretend you don’t exist or are beneath them. It happens time and time again to black folks even by people who are not mixed. People are black when it suits them and when they reach a certain level of success they want to leave it all behind.

    Just my 2 cents…

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jessica-R-McJunkins/1492749007 Jessica R McJunkins

    Yeah, um, Empress Divine, that’s bullsht.

    I’m biracial, and I grew up feeling like I couldn’t win. The white side of my family accepted me with open arms, and the issu of race was something we were encouraged to talk about. My white grandmother took a tremendous amount of pride in her brown-skinned grandchildren, and dared anyone to say otherwise. My grandfather loved golf, but would not play on a single course that wasn’t integrated. And this was in NC.

    By contrast, my black cousins singled my sister and I out for ‘talking white’ or having ‘good hair.’ It wasn’t until I had graduated from college did I truly feel comfortable around them, and that was because I simply didn’t give a shit about what they thought anymore, and they could see that.

    There were times growing up when I had self-righteous teachers/mentors etc try to tell me that I was ‘all black’ and that I had no business even doing any research into the Caucasian side of my heritage. Those teachers got handed the business by both my mother and my father.

    With that said, I have experienced bigotry from both sides of the racial divide. My hair pisses people off, my skin makes people angry, and some of my colleagues still, in 2011, can’t seem to get it through their thick heads why I wouldn’t want anything to do with their parents because of said parents’ opposition to interracial dating.

    Empress Divine, not sure where you’re getting your info, but suffice it to say, it’s inaccurate. I would encourage anyone who has a pre-concieved notion of what it’s like to be bi-racial in America to read the book Mulatto America. You’ll learn a lot.

    This kind of view is incorrect and spreading an entirely incorrect message about the bi-racial experience. Black folks have NOT always been the ones to accept bi-racial people, and it has been my experience, in the south, where racism is alive and well in many places, that it comes from whites and blacks.

    Bi-racial people also do not need to be ‘propped up’ by blacks. Are you kidding me? What an incredibly condescending thing to say. Most of the time, bi-racial people find it hard to find acceptance from either side of the racial split, and consequently learn to turn to themselves for support more often than not. That was certainly my experience.

    And as far as Tiger or Mariah is concerned, who the hell are we to judge? We don’t know the individual circumstances of each person, and to reference Tiger specifically, it would be doing his mother a tremendous disservice to not recognize his Asian heritage, especially since he references much of the Asian spiritual tradition to stay emotionally and spiritually healthy. Part of the problem with Tiger probably has a lot to do with resentment towards him for that as well. So much of the time, if you ain’t a church goin, gospel lovin Christian, you’re ‘denying your heritage.’ I’ve experienced this as well. I hate it. A large part of the reason why I don’t go to church, why I’m happy not devoting my time to a scam.

    I am so incredibly sick of this kind of rhetoric being slung around in society. When will America wake up and realize that most of us are ‘mixed’ anyway?! When will people stop letting their resentment get in the way of a child’s emotional health?! Most importantly, when will people mind their own damn business?! Everyone’s experience is different, and I’m tired of the ignorant generalizations!

  • Coolie

    Actually no, it’s not bullshit. I am biracial as well, of Afro-Jamaican and Indian descent, and can definitely relate to where you’re coming from. While I sympathize with you and have experienced many of the things you’ve brought up, I believe Empress Divine has a valid point, a slight generalization but a valid point nonetheless. I’ve seen it amongst class mates and co-workers who cling to or deny their “blackness” when it’s suitable for them and it’s disheartening, so don’t knock her down for her opinion because these things DO happen.

  • Ciderkiss

    All I gotta say is co-sign.

  • EmpressDivine

    I’m sooo don’t want to get into a back and forth with you about this. I’ll address the points that were directed at me and then I’m leaving this alone.

    1. No it’s not bullshit. You just don’t wanna hear something that differs from your personal experience.

    2. It’s wonderful that the white side of your family was open-minded but that doesn’t make you or them any less of an anomaly. While it is true today that more and more white folks are accepting of mixed children, the majority still would rather not have mixed grandchildren (especially half-black). Even if they love and accept the mixed child, that often does not extend to the non-white half’s group.

    3. Pre-Civil Rights era, who do you think was by and large raising these bi-racial kids? They certainly weren’t being raised in all-white enclaves in segregated neighborhoods. Were they going to all-white schools? Working at all-white establishments? Things have slowly changed in the last 40 years but black people have been caring for bi-racial kids WAY longer than whites.

    4. The last part of my comment about propping people up was mostly in reference to celebrities and not really regular folks. I’ll definitely take the charge for not being more clear with my original statements. Sidenote: I’ve never heard of Mariah going out of her way to say she was white but then again I was a kid when she came out.

    5. I’m definitely not gonna discount the fact that bi-racial people get attacked from both sides. I’ve seen and heard the insults you mentioned directed at mixed people and people who “appeared” to be mixed. As far as your hair pissing peopel off and your skin making people angry, I’m sure most black people in general can say this albeit for different reasons than you but still…

    I wasn’t trying to be condescending. If my words weren’t clear, like I said, I’ll take the charge. I still stand by statement that black folks have been more accepting of biracial people than whites. That is not to discount that we have our own issues with taunting and bullying.

  • S.

    Black this… Black that…

    Empress, Jessica, Coolie… You are ALL right!

    The Black community is NOT a monolithic group! We all have individual minds, experiences and reactions.

    Do you think ALL Black people wanted their biracial halves to be called “Black” for the last few hundred years? Do you think that exchange was a peaceful one? I doubt it! Especially with White people willing to give a slightly better treatment to the “light skin” and “good hair” ones because they were of their blood and ‘less’ (bad) African.

    Even today when advertisers are trying to fill their “Black” quota they will use mixed-race looking Black women (light skin, curly hair) almost *always* instead of African-looking American women.

    This is how White people have always used labeling who is Black and who is biracial. It ALWAYS works to THEIR advantage… not ours and certainly not biracials’.

    Just ask yourself, WHY are White people, AFTER 400+ YEARS OF CALLING BIRACIALS “BLACK”, just now caring so much???? How DARE they come at Black people at point the finger at us for making the free-spirited biracial a “vigilante” for wanting to be recognized as such.

    Black people are NOT peachy innocent, I KNO this, BUT when will Whites OPENLY take responsibility for years of shutting biracials out of “their” community?????

    Black Americans, we are the victims (yet again) and the perps! Victims because we had NO CHOICE but have people who were not US be recognized as us and constantly compared and placed above us for hundreds of years, creating multiple mentalities that still exist today. We are the perps because many of us have become bitter towards the fact, jealous and insecure toward the way biracials identify themselves. I say LET THEM BE. Even if your 100% sure that they label themselves this to escape their “blackness”, SO WHAT! What is THEIR self-hatred to you!

    But what people need to understand is WHY this is a hotter issue in the Black community. MOST of us are descendants and family members of biracials than Whites are. We have lived in closer proximity to biracials for much longer than Whites have. So it is MORE complicated and agitating to Black folks when Whites PUSH an agenda that they historically have ignored or opposed! Not to mention, their timing is SUSPICIOUS!!!

    Jessica R McJunkins

    Your story is not uncommon this day and age but it IS a fairly *new* story. It would be hard pressed to find White people who would stick their neck out for their biracial relatives just 40-50 years ago!

    It’s EASY for White people this day and age to “act” like they are the ‘good o’l folks’ who embrace their “beautiful” caramel/olive toned curly-haired sometimes light-eyed biracial children/grandchildren and claim African Americans are EVIL for trying to hog you all to ourselves. lol They only care about you NOW because the world understands how valuable you are (and have been). Seriously, this storyline is hilarious!

    All I have to say is, EVERY “Black” issue in America starts with White People but because they are so privilege, they have the ability to ignore it for as long as they want.

  • Alexandra

    I agree and disagree. While race is still an issue amongst some people, there comes a time where we have to find a solution to move on. I do find it annoying these topics are blamed on Blacks.
    And I disagree with the notion we are all ‘mixed anyway’. That’s BS.
    If that’s the case Jessica, you wouldn’t have been taunted for your hair texture.

  • Chrissy

    Ummm EmpressDivine’s generalization was not ignorant at all. Just because you don’t like something doesn’t mean it’s bullsh*t.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tomi-Ogundayo/531816497 Tomi Ogundayo

    Well… I agree with Jessica… mostly.
    It’s only black people that tell me I can’t be Nigerian and Brazilian at the same time because I’m too dark.

    “Nigga you black LOL”

    Also on the other hand I’m not going to say whites are more tolerant of biracial kids than blacks, and vice versa. Don’t you think most families would prefer it if their children married within their race? That’s what they’re comfortable with. That’s the culture they know and understand. It’s only practical to want the best for your children and their children. I’m sure the sentiments might change once the children are born; you can’t exactly decide the skin color of the ones you love, and it’s foolish to exile someone for what they didn’t choose to become….

    Basically I’m saying not all whites are going to flip their shit over a partially black baby, and not all blacks are going to embrace a partially white baby.

    Please stop classifying us as separate, but monolithic groups of people. It doesn’t make sense.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tomi-Ogundayo/531816497 Tomi Ogundayo

    But we are all mixed anyway… at least blacks in America.
    Find me one black family that doesn’t have a Caucasian/Asian/Hispanic/Native American ancestor. Then I’ll believe you. Some of us just LOOK more ethnic than others.
    [I blame the Punnet Square.hahaha =)]
    Ethnicity is a matter of perception and identification. Please go try and tell those Dominicans that they’re black. You will be shocked by their righteous indignation.

  • Lulu

    Finally an article that makes sense.

  • Lulu

    And it’s interesting how if you go to a predominately white/Asian/etc site, you will NEVER see as many topics written by biracials about their “woes” as you would on sites like Clutch.

    Why is that?

  • http://labombebaby.wordpress.com LA BOMBE

    The only problem that I have with the bi-racial issue within the black community and within American society as a whole is I’ve come of age with the perception that black is all right, as long as it looks a little bit white, or something else. That is the only thing that provokes an emotional reaction out of me, the fact that I was brought up in a culture that showed me in more ways than one that I was an inferior to the other members of my ‘diaspora’ that possessed a particular phenotypic profile, usually due to the fact that one of their parents was of a different ethnic background. I’m an intelligent woman and sometimes I sit back and look at my own reservations about racial identity and self worth and think to myself “dang, I’m messed up.” It all goes back to the field/house nigger syndrome in my opinion. Honestly, and you may not agree, but I wish bi-racial people or anyone for that matter wouldn’t use the one-drop rule. I understand you have the right to identify with whatever group you choose but I feel like if you started claiming your heritage, ALL of your heritage, proudly and defiantly that would be like throwing a wrench in this archaic system that has us all screwy in the first place. I wasn’t mad at Tiger at all for creating his own name for his ethnic identity. He took all the parts of himself and said “No, THIS is what I am.” At least he didn’t let somebody or something as stupid as the one-drop rule dictate to him what he should be. It’s 2011 though, and as a black woman I’m trying to rise above the conflicted messages the media and society is sending me. I’m black, wide nose, brown skin, thick lips, thick hips and I’m glorious.

  • Clnmike

    Good article, I have been arguing this point for awhile, these conversations need to be had with the white counter parts as well. Instead black people have to endure the woe is me complaints as if there is a concerted effort by blacks to box in mixed people.

  • binks

    @S co-sign!
    Amen for this article because I have been saying this for a while. I ‘am so sick and tried of this boo hoo issue and debate that is only extended to black people when it isn’t presented fairly enough to the other communities at large. Let’s cut the bs, black people aren’t the only one who have an opinion about biracial people and their self identification because if you think we do then take off the rose colored glasses asap. And another fact that isn’t presented fairy enough, individual biracial people’s view on the matter! Biracial people aren’t singular either and hold their own views and opinions on this matter or even force the self identification issue on other biracial people themselves so again let’s stop the cop out that black people are solely responsible for this divide because we aren’t. Instead of being quiet like a church mouse take your grievance and issues to the white community, Asian community, etc. because guess what their are a LOT of people in those communities as well that still look at someone who is biracial just black or that you aren’t truly apart of their community so they place them into the black community by default. So instead of trying to stop the flooding go to the source of the flood… oops I forgot it is easier to hit a turkey that is open than one hiding

  • omg

    the ones with black in them always seem to have the most issues. i think they just have problems with blackness.

    it’s also funny that asians tend not to regard mixed kids, especially with black, as asian. i’ve noticed that some younger ones do but most don’t.

    whites never consider them white.

    and why does clutch post things like this? you have figured out that clutch thrives on starting mess and bringing up controversial topics? lmao. if these articles didn’t get traffic and comments, they wouldn’t post them. simple as that.

  • http://www.clutchmagazine.com Clutch

    @OMG: “you have figured out that clutch thrives on starting mess and bringing up controversial topics? lmao. if these articles didn’t get traffic and comments, they wouldn’t post them. simple as that”

    Thanks for your comment! Clutch strives to have a progressive dialogue about topics that relate to us and our culture(s). We can’t predict comments and would love to have readers comment on all the articles such as “United We Stand”. We don’t strive for anything but a place for women (and men) like us to come and have a online community that is dedicated to us.

    Thanks again for your comment OMG :)

    Clutch

  • Najat

    I think calling Empress’s comments “bullshit” is hardly accurate. Your anger is misplaced, I didn’t see any definitive “this is the experience for all mixed people in America” comments in her statement at all. Every person’s experience is different. But if you want to look at history, you will see more often than not, black family members raised mixed children. Not to say there weren’t screwed up comments or favoritism or exclusion practiced. Black people have always had issues with race, same with white people, in this country.

    What I am offended by in your comments is the generalizing of African Americans as “Church goin, gospel lovin’ Christians.” Sorry if you felt that you not having a connection to the church made you unaccepted by blacks. But there are black Muslims, Jews, etc. and it is a stereotype YOU are placing on blacks that christian=black. By saying this claim you are being nothing more than a hypocrite in this post, plain and simple.

    And as you say, your experience meant that you did not have support from either side. But it is not “condescending” in the least to say that mixed people have gotten support from black people, which they have, especially if raised by a black parent/grandparent/etc.

  • Ato

    Bene,

    It may surprise you to know that in Africa we do not award biracial people the wonderful priviledge of being black. We call it like we see.

  • Mimi

    True, now thats a stereotype I haven’t heard…christian=black=BAD. Really…, fighting a comment you find negative with another negative stereotype. You discredit everything you just said

  • new moon

    S. , your opinions and facts are dead on with mine. Especially “so, it is more complicated and agitating to Black Folks when whites push an agenda that they historically ignored or opposed! Not to mention, their timing is SUSPICIOUS!!!”. Soo true.

  • http://www.uncagedbirds.wordpress.com Trina Roach

    There are so many things I would say about this article and the opinions expressed in the comments. Unfortunately, I don’t have the time to go into detail right now. There are some quick points I’d like to make, however:

    1.) Why do we believe white people when they define what’s white (see: “one drop rule”, but don’t believe black (i.e. African) people when they define who’s black?

    2.) Why – in the 21st Century – have black Americans become the guardians of an old Jim Crow standard? Why do we feel we have to be Inspector Poirot and scout out anyone who we feel may have a sliver of blackness somewhere in the thickage of their family tree and “out” them?

    3.) We talk about people in the past who “passed for white” and vilify them for choosing an “easier” route. Shouldn’t we also be questioning those people in the 21st Century who are “passing as black” – i.e. are only black according to the aforementioned “one drop rule” – simply because the pressure is on them to do so? Because – yes, you know Barack Obama is of Afro-European parentage when you see him, but that certainly isn’t true of all bi-/multiracial people.

    4.) I personally believe there is a difference between someone *identifying* as black and someone being *biologically/genetically* black. Very few black Americans are really “black”. Yes, slavery/the “one drop rule”/Jim Crow decreed we are, but calling Kraft sandwich slices “cheese” doesn’t make it so.

    5.) Finally: The American perspective on race isn’t the only one. And (oh horror), it may not be the most important, let alone the most “true”.

    Btw: I think this conversation IS being held with/by white (and other!) counterparts as well. Maybe not (yet) as loudly or openly, but as more and more children are being born into mixed race families, it’s becoming more and more relevant for BOTH sides of the table.

  • Tiffy

    I’m African American but I grew up in an interracial household my mom is black and my stepfather is German, my little sister is biracial and various close family members are either multiracial or have multiracial kids. For the most part the world runs on these racial constructs and a biracial person might be half white but society doesn’t see that. They can twist it, turn it, explain it, analyze it all they want, but it all comes down to perception and their usually perceived as “black”.I don’t think its complicated its just people have a hard time excepting it. White people see a biracial person and they think “black” because the person is obviously not white or full white and that fact will always be noted by whites. They feel you can’t be one of them because part of being “white” is being white. Like many commentors said it was Whites who made this rule not Blacks and biracial people should call white people out on this history however they wont care because they’re White!!

  • Delila

    Mcwhorter is right. Black people love to racial police the identity of others.

  • Caramel996

    Praise the Lord and pass the Afro pick!

  • TR

    Culture is at play here as well. We have a tendency to reject people we feel are not “culturally” black enough. Tiger Woods is a perfect example. Let’s be real. His comments about his identity notwithstanding, most black people never saw him as black to begin with. He was born and raised in conservative Orange County, California. He played golf. And he was clearly not identified with the Hip Hop generation in any way. Most blacks never took to him.

    Biracial or not, we have a tendency to reject the “blackness” of people based on cultural factors. We can talk about white people all day. However, we African Americans too often like to play the “qualify your blackness” game which seems to be a central part of this issue.

  • mrsmommy

    Oooooh, girl! You just handed their azzes some Ru Paul Shemail!

  • mrsmommy

    I say everybody else just leave everybody else alone. If you can’t stand the look, the feel, or the sound of biracial people—no need to hate. You too, can undergo several cosmetic treatments like any of the stars, or even go down to the nearest Korean beauty shop to get your latest Beyonce on.

    Very soon, Sammy Sosa’s whitening skin cream (which is a success), will be at a drug store near you.

    Finally, nirvana!

  • choklitgirlwonder

    With all due respect Tomi, Nigeria and Brazil are countries. Nigerian and Brazilian are your nationalities, not your race. It’s just like black Dominicans who say “I’m not black, I’m Dominican!” Nationality and race are two separate things. So yes, you can be of both Nigerian and Brazilian descent and STILL be black.

  • OPY

    Yep..Need to Qualify your “Blackness” these days! Sounds just like the old south…Just replace “White” with “Black”

  • QueenofNewcastle

    Here in the UK there are just too many bi racial people. They go by mixed race generally. I dont feel rejected when someone identifies as mixed because that is quite literally who they are. I dont know why blacks have this obesssion with claiming everyone and everything from mixed race people to the Pharoahs. It just isnt that serious.

  • isolde

    @trina

    *************************************************************************************
    “Why – in the 21st Century – have black Americans become the guardians of an old Jim Crow standard?”
    *************************************************************************************

    . . . because whites don’t still hold bi-racials/mixed race people to that same standard? Doesn’t the assertion that blacks are the guardians of Jim Crow strike you as being a little disingenuous?

    *************************************************************************
    Btw: I think this conversation IS being held with/by white (and other!) counterparts as well
    *************************************************************************

    Could you post some links or cite some references to substantiate your claim? I would like to read these articles in white forums where bi- racials and mixed race people take whites to task as McWhorter did blacks in his essay. I would also like to know if there is a trend within how authors of these articles approach identity politics in their work. How would an article authored by a bi/mixed race person pleading whites for acceptance be any different from that of a non bi/mixed race black person doing the same? Would that bi/mixed person be somehow more entitled to equality because of how white they are?

  • isolde

    ******************************************************************************
    5.) Finally: The American perspective on race isn’t the only one. And (oh horror), it may not be the most important, let alone the most “true”.
    *************************************************************************************
    You know, Clutch, this right here is a good essay topic, if it hasn’t already been done. Exploring how even though the US has one of, if not, the largest population of middle/upper class blacks in the world, we still have much to learn from other countries, where blacks are minorities, regarding race relations. And on some level, I’m being facetious, btw. I’m just waiting for someone to pull the Brazil card, and tell me, “oh everyone’s Brazilian in Brazil.” Yeah, everyone is Brazilian once you get past the defacto economic and political apartheid oppressing Brazilians that are the least white.

    I’ve traveled and studied abroad and visited the fam back in the old country, but I haven’t lived anywhere outside of the US long enough to say that people from xyz country have better policies, attitudes, or opportunities available for racial minorities than the US. So I’m really curious as to where these alleged places are and how they do it better.

  • QueenofNewcastle

    “I personally believe there is a difference between someone *identifying* as black and someone being *biologically/genetically* black. ”

    Spot on. There does seem to be a lot of ideology behind this “everyone is black” mantra in the black community. The socalled one drop rule is racist so why hold onto it? You should read some of the comments being made about the daughter of Halle Berry and Gabrielle Aubry in the black blogosphere. Everyone keeps saying she looks black, therefore she is. God forbid she needs bone marrow. We will see who is the best match for her.

  • http://www.uncagedbirds.wordpress.com Trina Roach

    @Isolde: Why do you care what “whites” do? Why do you give them so much power that you do what you think they *would* do before they do it? I won’t deny that *some* whites still think like that, just as I won’t deny that being aware of the impact institutional racism still has on our lives is imperative. But I have long given up thinking that *white people* are a homogenic group (because we certainly aren’t), just as I have long ago stopped letting other people formulate the core of my identity.

    You’ll excuse me if I leave the due diligence regarding how non-black blogs deal with this question up to you. If you are really interested in the level and tenor of discourse going on out there, you are either already (at least partially) aware of it or will have no problem putting in the time to do a little research to get a cross-section of opinion.

    Btw: “pleading for acceptance”? Really?

  • http://www.uncagedbirds.wordpress.com Trina Roach

    @Isolde: “I haven’t lived anywhere outside of the US long enough to say that people from xyz country have better policies, attitudes, or opportunities available for racial minorities than the US. So I’m really curious as to where these alleged places are and how they do it better.”

    I don’t know if it really has to do with having “better” policies, etc., or how you define that “better”. I think it has to do with “different” – and by contemplating the palette of differences realizing that the American way isn’t necessarily best and also might not travel well.

  • D-Chubb

    The old nature vs. nurture dichotomy is at work, here. Those of us in the social sciences, particularly psychology, have long understood that how you’re raised is a more important indicator of identity than actual genetic makeup. We call it enculturation. If you don’t experience the shared history, culture, and experiences of a community how can you be a part of it? That’s like saying your grandmother was Indian (!!!) and then going to the nearby indigenous community and saying, “Hey, Cuz, wazzup?” They’re going to look at you like you lost your damn mind.

    That’s why I never call Barack Obama, the first Black president. He is a biracial man raised by his Caucasian grandparents. A more accurate term would be the first president of African descent. But he aint Black like us because he wasn’t raised like us.

  • isolde

    ************************************************************************************
    “Why do you care what “whites” do? Why do you give them so much power that you do what you think they *would* do before they do it?”
    ************************************************************************************

    You know that’s not even what this is about (giving whites power). This discussion is about not always laying the bi/mixed issue at the feet of blacks. So it would stand to reason that whites/ non-blacks are pertinent to this discussion. It’s not about giving them power. It’s about giving them the earful about this issue that we (blacks) are given.

    ***********************************************************************************
    “You’ll excuse me if I leave the due diligence regarding how non-black blogs deal with this question up to you.”
    ***********************************************************************************

    Why even make that claim in this discussion if you can’t back it up? I mean that’s a
    pretty lofty claim to make, given how this essay is about how blacks are always being talked to about the bi/mixed issue.

    *************************************************************************************
    “But I have long given up thinking that *white people* are a homogenic group (because we certainly aren’t),”
    *************************************************************************************

    . . . except when we (blacks), as a whole, are guarding the Jim Crow standard. Hmm . . .

  • G

    @Queen of NewCastle
    Black people claim ancient egyptians b/c their has been a systematic attempt to not acknowledge black people contribution to ancient egypt, which is undeniable. The current egyptians are not the original egytians that were there thousands of years ago. But most people think that they are, so just because the majority of people think that does that make it true?? And if it’s not true, is it wrong to point that out?? I don’t know about you, but accurate history is very serious to me.

    And another thing, When it boils down to it, if you were not born in Africa, 9 times out of time you are multi-racial. The people with the highest percentage of African Blood in the U.S live on the islands on the coast of Georgia and South Carolina. So to be honest I don’t think it’s unreasonable to expect someone of mixed race to identify as black. Your definitely not white, why is it so much better to be “mixed”. All these labels and stuff are just tools to divide us. We all have melanin (which is advantage for us, we can live in hot climates without turning to burned raisins) and agree to be one in that light.

  • http://www.uncagedbirds.wordpress.com Trina Roach

    @Isolde:

    “…Why even make that claim in this discussion if you can’t back it up?…”

    I didn’t say I couldn’t back up my statement, I said I wouldn’t do your homework for you. Different message entirely.

    “…. . except when we (blacks), as a whole, are guarding the Jim Crow standard. Hmm . . .”

    Excuse my hyperbole, but it’s usually blacks that come at mixed race people (and the entire issue of a mixed race identity) with the “one drop rule” nowadays. Someone mentioned the convo on the blogosphere about Halle Berry’s daughter, for example. A child who ist 25% black IF her grandfather was 100% black (which he probably wasn’t..). I’ve read several black blogs on the subject, but also many non-black blogs. On the black blogs that I’ve read there is most often (though not entirely) the notion that she’s black, because….(see: above). On many of the non-black blogs it’s mostly “who cares” to “she’s biracial/bi-cultural” to “she should get to decide how she identifies” – until a black person (not all black people on the blog, of course) pipes in to explain the “one drop rule”…

    *shrug*

    Sometimes I feel that if all the KKK disappeared tomorrow, *some* black people would create it again in a test tube.

    “…It’s about giving them the earful about this issue that we (blacks) are given…”

    There has been so much even in the mainstream media on this subject recently. It’s not like only the black blogosphere is talking about it….

  • Chrissy

    One thing that I am tired of when this bi-racial thing comes up is the whole everybody is multi-racial anyway? And how do you define that? So you are multi-racial because your great-great-great-great grandfather was white and your even greater grandmother is native american. lmao. If that is how multi-racial or mixed is being defined then that is so silly and this seems to come from black people a lot. When is the last time you heard asian and white people go on and on and on about how they’re not white/asian because their great-great-great-great grandmother was black? It seems only minorities do this. And Im not sure why. If your parents are mixed then I understand, if your grandparents are mixed i still get it. Even if your great grand parents are mixed I can get with that, but anything else is crazy.

    On the topic, I agree with the writer. Im really tired of bi-racial and mixed people directing this topic to black people, as if black people are the only ones that do this. There are plenty of other ethnicites and races that do not include mixed race children into the culture so why blame it on black people. Black people did not start the one drop rule.

    And on the issue of how other countries view race…I know in some countries they view race by wealth and what color you are, not what your genetic history says. That is why some light skinned black people can be called white in other countries, even though they have black parents. In some countries the word ‘brown’ is a racial category. I heard (not sure if it’s sure, but im sure it is) Dominican Republic calling someone black is offensive (even though that country has a large percentage of people from African descent.) So the word black is not even a category. Instead it is indio…mhm. And when you look at the history of that country it is understandable why they dont want to be called black.

    I know I rambled…but…

  • isolde

    *********************************************************************************************************
    “I didn’t say I couldn’t back up my statement, I said I wouldn’t do your homework for you. Different message entirely”
    *********************************************************************************************************

    I’m not the one making claims that contradict the thesis of this essay. You are. Therefore, if you’re going to make such claims, then it isn’t too much to ask for you to validate them with evidence. Sorry, but if you can’t be bothered with substantiating your claim with proof, then I can’t be bothered with taking it seriously.

    *****************************************************************************************************
    “I don’t know if it really has to do with having “better” policies, etc., or how you define that “better”. I think it has to do with “different” – and by contemplating the palette of differences realizing that the American way isn’t necessarily best and also might not travel well.”
    ******************************************************************************************************

    I define “better’ in terms of economic stability and socio-economic mobility. I define better in terms of how much of the minority population lives at or below the poverty line in comparison to the racial or economic majority. Sometimes you have to make that distinction between racial and economic, as in the case of Brazil, because although whites are in the numerical minority, they control the majority of the political and economic institutions. A government can claim to be racially egalitarian, but if it enforces policies that are structurally racist and denies minorities the opportunity to become economically stable or socio-economically mobile en masse, then that government is not racially egalitarian. So it begs the question, in terms of countries where blacks are in the economic/numerical minority, where do they do it better than the US and why?

  • Mr. Buddy Love

    Great article as usual Bene. I know this is going to sound crazy, but racism has never been black people’s problem. It’s always been the problem of something that NEVER EVER EVER gets mentioned which is the White Inferiority Complex. I had someone state it to me like this, “if you had to run a foot race against a 90 year old person, someone who you deemed inherently inferior to you, would you feel the need to cheat by denying them access to adequate training facilities, good nutrition, and a healthy state of mind through inclusion and normal socialization?” Chances are no. People only cheat when they feel that their own inherent skills aren’t adequate enough to compete on a level playing field. This explains why whites did not want to let blacks compete in college and professional athletics up until around 50 years ago because they knew they would be wiped out. Case in point, look at the racial make up of the NBA and the NFL.The same fear holds true in education, corporate America not to mention the bedroom. Black man plus white woman (or vise versa) equals black baby and there isn’t ANYTHING they can do about that…………….except legally separate the races through Jim Crow, redlining, poor education and zero opportunity. A white person put me on to this by the way.

    Blacks do not have the political or economic capacity to be racist as the original author was passively implying. As a whole, people with color are more accepting of biracial children than whites are. This issue needs to be placed on the door step of white America along will all other issues regarding race and the FEAR of including the earths original man and woman. Every dysfunctional group in America is typically held accountable for their dysfunctional behavior except whites as a race. Usually anytime you see a show dealing with an issue regarding race, they usually feature black people (the victim) and NEVER EVER EVER EVER EVER EVER do we see them interview the white racist that make shows and specials like that possible. Blacks basically have one question to our oppressor, Mr. White Person, why the hell are you so dam evil and afraid of us?

    Drop this issue on the door steps of its rightful petrified owner.

    Thank You

  • http://www.uncagedbirds.wordpress.com Trina Roach

    “…Sorry, but if you can’t be bothered with substantiating your claim with proof, then I can’t be bothered with taking it seriously…”

    There are a myriad of non-black blogs out there that cover this topic. Whether they are simply “social” blogs that discuss current event/topics or blogs by people directly involved in the multi-racial/anti-racist scene.

    I comment on blogs in my down time while running my business to decompress. Taking additional time off to create a reading list – no matter how short – is something I’m not prepared to do. If that means you think my statement is invalid: So be it.

  • CiCiVidal

    You have got to be kidding me this subject! “Why are we giving whites so much power?” Umm…because the majority (whites) runs this country economically and socially and if you’re not white you’re the other. Listen if some biracials have an issue with being labled black, lets reject their asses too. Their movement is a joke. In the end the painful truth(that some of them can’t seem to handle) is that we are judged by looks in this twisted world/society. If you look black that is what you are going to judged as, period. Try to fake the funk if you want, Tiger as was Cabla-Whatever until he was caught messing around with those white women and when the “Man” pulled his endorsements he was just another “chinky-eyed negro”. I’m sure regardless of what HE considers himself, he knows how the majority feels about what race he is now.

  • TR

    That card is a slippery slope. How do you determine if someone was “raised like us”? We are not all raised the same. We don’t all have the same socio-economic realities. Or is race the only factor? Does being raised by non-blacks really disqualify one from being black? What if one is raised by non-blacks in a predominantly black neighborhood? What if one is raised in a very well to do black family, but in a predominantly white community?

    We have to be careful when we start drawing arbitrary lines around who is and who is not like us.

  • COCOEL

    I really don’t care what they do, If they want to be white then be white. If it helps them mentally and socially then that is fine.However, when “old granny” who’s son or daughter you want to marry is looking at you crazy at the bar-b-que don’t even think it’s because you have cake on your shirt.just saying….when you choose, if thats what you want, then don’t crawl back and find 5 black friends on Facebook when some person reminds you that THEY feel you are black. If you don’t want to choose that’s your choice. We all have choices…..but don’t put your nose up at blacks or cosign racist remarks to fit in. Or try to make they line by saying the following:
    1. I knowwww they are sooooo ghetto…I mean…OMG!
    2. I knowwww they really can’t afford it.Such a shame that’s why THEIR kids are….
    3. Is that her hair?
    4. They are sooooooo…….
    5. That’s why I don’t associate………

    lmao…It’s not funny but I have heard some real black people say most of what I said..especially when they are with the “corporate sponsors” groups (outside with work friends)….ya’ll know what I’m talking about……don’t laugh……

  • cancergirl08

    “The only reason White people like to point out the President is biracial is because, well, he’s the gotdamn President. It’s another way to take away the pride we feel in having the first Black President by saying, “Well really he’s biracial.”

    This! I will never forget the night of Nov. 4, 2008. I was watching the election results at a friend’s house. We turned away from CNN to Fox News. It was while watching Fox that we heard then-Senator Obama had won. One of the announcers said, “He has made history. He is the first black President” to which a white anchor quickly corrected, “Well, he’s really biracial.” Funny, because when he was running for office, Fox frequently commented that he was “black!!!!”

  • Alexandra

    Again I disagree. Not everyone is mixed.
    Chrissy’s comment on page 2 summed up my exact thoughts.

  • Alexandra

    I liked your ramble there. And I agree 100% with your first paragraph.

  • Kam

    That’s not true at all. On an asian forum I was on they had a whole entire section devoted to mixed race Asians. And you won’t find any of that on a white site because our country has defined white as the absence of any (recent) admixture.

    Being multiracial myself and having many multiracial friends I have to say that some have issues and some don’t, not just the ones with black in them.

    A lot of the comments here are exactly what McWhorter is talking about. Why do people care so much what multiracial people call themselves and why do people not see them as capable of defining their own identity?

  • http://www.nappilyevahaftah.net Tlynnsmith

    “Your story is not uncommon this day and age but it IS a fairly *new* story. It would be hard pressed to find White people who would stick their neck out for their biracial relatives just 40-50 years ago!”

    Amen….but I don’t think it’s so common, even now.

  • isis

    lmaoooo yeah they showed him (Tiger) just how black he was. lmaooo I loved it!! Getting too big for your britches Mr White gonna show you your rightful place. Better believe it!! I agree stop claiming those who don’t want to be claimed for every Tiger there is an Obama. Let’s love and embrace the Obamas and say fuck you to the Tigers

  • isis

    @S Amen Amen. Tired of hearing about biracials and their issues. let them go in their little communities and breed til the black is all out then they will be happy.

  • guest

    These mixed up people think they are above blacks but they are so mistaken. The minute they get in trouble here they come running to the black community for support because the white race did something to them. Stopp kissin they behind black people, and let God deal with these arrogant people.

  • guest

    AMEN!

  • guest

    VERY WELL PUT!!

  • anon25

    @Guest

    Honestly, this right here is what needs to stop. “These mixed up people think they are above blacks but they are so mistaken”. What are you trying to imply by saying this? Are you generalizing and saying that mixed people are arrogant or generalizing and saying that they are mistaken because non mixed blacks are above them? “Let God deal with them?” Is it REALLY that serious? You’ve met some biracial people and can now assume how every/most biracial people are? This is PATHETIC.

  • Jaslene

    I’m tired of hearing about biracial people and the issues with being biracial. I don’t care.

  • My Thoughts

    Okay, what really irks me is how some ppl on here are stating “i don’t care about their problems” “they think their so much better” “I wish they would shut up and stop bringing their problems to our door steps”. Oh Really?! Then every non mixed black person needs to stfu about their problems. Today! Now! Thats ALLLLL you do! woe is me this, woe is me that. Method man said this about my hair, this black man is now dating outside his race, I think light skinned people are prettier than me because thats what society says, mixed chicks is on teamlightskinned, I was called nappy, Ima big girl who needs to be loved too and on and on and on.

    See what pisses me off is how some black people can’t take a friggin nano second to care, acknowledge or sympathize with the struggles of others. And not just mixed people but other people all over the world who don’t look like them. It’s always…”well in this country we’ve been so surpressed and jim crow this and slavery that and the man this and black men don’t love us that.” But the minute somebody else has a different type of struggle all of a sudden its “well their struggle doesn’t even compare or come close so they need to shut up or buck up or toughen up or screw them all together.”

    Such hypocrites. To earn respect you need to give respect. Sure other races have conversations about mixed people but who cares how these people identify themselves as? Do you enjoy being put in a box all the time? Maybe, just maybe mixed people just like to acknowledge that they are made up of different races and cultures and that makes them them. Maybe they’ve had life experiences that only a mixed person can identify with. Maybe they only knew one side of their family, maybe their mixed with three or four or five races immediately instead of two.

    Why is it so horrible to acknowledge where you come from? It has nothing to do with thinking you’re better than anybody else. But you know what, I think I’m hella better then ghetto ass black people who are always looking for a government hand out, poppin out a million kids, can’t speak proper english and then have the audacity to give me crap about the way I talk. It has nothing to do with your skin color. It has EVERYTHING to do with your mentality, with your lifestyle and your choices. Just as diverse as non mixed black people are mixed people are just as diverse. You can’t take one persons comments…or even a few peoples comments and understand the whole community. So people on here need to be respectful because mixed people obviously spend a lot of time and energy reading, participating, respecting, caring and dedicating their lives to helping resolve the issues of the black community — which I’m sure the majority would identify with at least in part.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tomi-Ogundayo/531816497 Tomi Ogundayo

    @choklitgirlwonder

    Ah, thank you for pointing that out to me! And I totes understand and agree with you (partially).
    But my ancestors on my mum’s side are supposedly a mixture Portuguese whites and Nigerian, that started in Brazil and went back to Nigeria (where there exists a small community that was colonized earlier by the Portuguese, I think). My last name was Pereira longgggg before it was Ogundayo.

    Excuse my former ignorance, also my babble above if I’m wrong (again).

  • no solidarity

    I’m black and was’nt raised like you either.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tomi-Ogundayo/531816497 Tomi Ogundayo

    @Alexandra

    I found it! And I don’t understand, I don’t agree at ALL, and I will need you to explain to me the parts I stumbled across.

    ” So you are multi-racial because your great-great-great-great grandfather was white and your even greater grandmother is native american.”

    Well yes, that’s automatically not full-black. Also almost a tad unlikely given how many greats are in that sentence and how history went on.. But continue.

    “When is the last time you heard asian and white people go on and on and on about how they’re not white/asian because their great-great-great-great grandmother was black? It seems only minorities do this.”

    Well…. it would be irrelevant and foolish because black people never got the chance to colonize Asia o__o. And the Europeans were bastards during the Opium Wars and Trading days. They conquered as far as South Asia, but Hitler and Napoleon never got into Russia which was the ticket to China. So there wouldn’t be much mixing going on there…. But that’s excluding the Philippines which is a great mixture of Asian, Hispanic, Native, and White.

    Also there WAS some mixing going on in these Asian countries, just not as clean-cut as BLACK ASIAN and WHITE ASIAN would have been. But you do have the Zainichi and Ainu in Japan, the Mongolians who, with the help of my greatest love and hero, Genghis Khan, basically slept their way into China…. and let’s not get started on the Asian population in South Africa that, for a short time, almost outnumbered the number of blacks living in the area, but not the whites. You can’t assume this doesn’t get talked about by the people who are drastically affected by their ancestors decision to marry or mate outside their culture.

    I do agree these talks happen with greater frequency within the minority community (really, REALLY? ‘minority’) and that is because of ya know, SLAVERY. Blacks were “drastically affected by their ancestors decision to marry or mate [or conquer] outside their culture.”

    “If your parents are mixed then I understand, if your grandparents are mixed i still get it. Even if your great grand parents are mixed I can get with that, but anything else is crazy.”

    So if your great great grand parents or great to the third grand parents were mixed it automatically doesn’t count. Because that is really how the Punnet Square works. Alright, everyone ignore the different shades of brown and hair textures because you definitely did not get that from that 1/6th up there. DISREGARD, it is ALL a lie.

    I’m sorry for the sarcasm and the coyness. But I can’t accept this logic until you help me understand it. So please, will you explain it to me :D?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tomi-Ogundayo/531816497 Tomi Ogundayo

    @Kam

    THANK YOU. Most of my friends are Korean and they talk about this all the time!
    You know what else they talk about? Dark-skinned Asians being inferior.
    Also! Hair straightening and perms!
    Oh oh oh! And this one might be a shocker; “The Japanese are bastards and the Chinese are lazy!”
    You mean all Asians DON’T get along?
    *Gasp* Well no, there was that whole time Japan enslaved the Chinese and sold Korean women into slavery and servitude…

    Wait a minute…this sounds familiar OH SHI-

    Please elevate yourselves to a better understanding of other peoples’ cultures before you make BS claims.

  • kim

    Oh please. You think you are better than ghetto black folk? Sorry to break it to you, but I take care of poor, gutter, hand out having, everything is owed to me white folk everyday and many of their biracial children. Do you feel better then them?
    The way you speak? Why would you have enough interaction with these so called ghetto black folk, if you are sooo better than they are or do you mean you are providing a service to them and they simply come out and comment on your diction? I don’t buy it.
    The only reason ANY biracial man or woman does anythng to “help resolve the issues in the black community” is because they too will benefit.
    You seem to believe that all black folk suffer from the same ills and live under the same circumstances. A little White superiority there, Yes?
    Maybe you or they need to go back home to dear old dad and/or wonderful mom and ask them how they added to the “issues in the black community”. Bet you won’t.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Kanika-Ameerah/100000531851239 Kanika Ameerah

    Word! I have better things to do with my life than to worry about silly stuff like this.

  • Chrissy

    Ill explain it to you sense it appears that you dont get it, when I really believe you do. My point was how do you define what is multi-racial? Then I have points to explain how that was being defined on this site. It appeared when being ‘mixed’ comes up it’s not that your partents are mixed or your grandparents were mixed it was that one relative from long ago, that you have never seen befoore or anything, but you will still ‘claim’ it as being ‘mixed’ That was my point. And I believe it was clear. If you want to consider yourself mixed and you actually live in a household where those cultures are included, I said I understand. That is where the grandparents and great great grandparents came in. Because most likely you will have been taught about the culture. But to say Im ‘mixed’ because somebody fell out of your family tree long ago is silly.
    Like you ask a black person are u mixed.
    They say yes.
    Oh really, with what?
    Native American.
    Oh, whose Native American?
    My great great grandmother on my dad’s said that I never met and dont know her name.
    lol Really?

    IMO it’s just an excuse so the person wont have to be black or be less black.

    And with the Asian and White comment Im not going to go into that because I believe you understood what I was saying. Point being when do Asian and White people go on an on and on about a long lost ancestor of another race and claim that, and dont say they are white/asian any longer but instead ‘mixed’?

    When white people start claiming mixtures it’s like German, Swiss, Irish, etc. When black people do it it’s anything White and Indian. Notice how they dont know the culture or specific names of the tribes but claim it as ‘mixed’. Anyway I went on too long once again.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Fatou-Sarr/46711069 Fatou Sarr

    And there you have it! I’ve never heard a bi-racial person referred to as Black. I have plenty of bi-racial cousins and they’re all referred to as BI-RACIAL.

  • Chrissy

    One more thing..Look at how far back you have to go to prove there is a mix. You said black people have an ancesor that is white,asian,hispanic, etc…That may be true but how long ago?? And that one ancestor cancels out all the black ancestors enough to be multi-racial? Seriously? You have 500 black people and then 2 white ancestors and all of a sudden that’s ‘mixed.’ lmao. I’ll ask the question again. What is ‘mixed’?

    Oh and there are probably some families white, black, asian, and etc where there are no mixes.

  • Leah

    @Trina who said “On many of the non-black blogs it’s mostly “who cares” to “she’s biracial/bi-cultural” to “she should get to decide how she identifies” – until a black person (not all black people on the blog, of course) pipes in to explain the “one drop rule”…”

    Actually, it’s Nahla’s own mother, a biracial women who herself identifies as black, that says that she adheres to the “one drop rule” and considers Nahla to be black as well.

    http://socialitelife.com/halle-berry-feels-her-daughter-is-black-02-2011

    Halle herself was taught to identify as being a black women by her own white mother. Regardless of the reason(s) why Halle’s mother chose to do this I think this just reaffirms the author’s point—you can’t put all the blame on black people for biracial people’s self identity “issues”.

  • S.

    “But you know what, I think I’m hella better then ghetto ass black people who are always looking for a government hand out, poppin out a million kids, can’t speak proper english and then have the audacity to give me crap about the way I talk. ”

    ^There are bi-raical people that fit this description (just watch a season of any VH1 dating show) sooo I guess you being better than them has nothing to do with heritage? Yea, I’m just gonna assume you accidentally missed that point!

  • My Thoughts

    Ahh yeah I knew you would hop on that one part cause you can’t wrap your head around anything else besides color. Everyone has interaction with these so called folk, why do you think outside races have a negative view of blacks? You can’t blame the media for everything. And just because you want to deny it don’t make it so. And @ S. NOPE! I think…no I know….I’m better than ghetto bi-racial and white folk too. Because like I just said, it has nothing do with color and EVERYTHING to do with mentality. a Poor Man’s “I can’t do for myself, somebody’s holding me down all the time” mentality.

    Oh and please stop basing your views and opinions of others from vh1…seriously

  • My Thoughts

    You know what correction. Ghetto doesn’t always equal a poor man’s mentality. But it sure does come with the territory.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tomi-Ogundayo/531816497 Tomi Ogundayo

    @Chrissy, thanks for taking the time to explain your point!

    I get what you’re saying now. I still disagree completely, and in my opinion what you’re saying sounds iffy but yeah, I get it :D.

    I still believe that even with 500 impossibly black ancestors and one white one you are still mixed. It’s not a whole lot of mixed, but it depends when that one white person came a long. You are still not ALL BLACK, mostly black yes. But mixed. This is not an excuse in my opinion to justify anyone’s “Holier than thou” feelings. Just a fact.

    I also still believe you don’t have to know exactly what kind of Indian or white you are to be mixed; as long as it’s in the DNA you ain’t no pure-blood. It’s a gene thing not an identity issue… But the point of this debate IS identity.

    So… you are right. Completely justified and right!

    “IMO it’s just an excuse so the person wont have to be black or be less black.”

    I see the truthiness in this sentence now that I understand your point.

    “Oh and there are probably some families white, black, asian, and etc where there are no mixes.”

    Agreed, but I never said there wasn’t.

    Once again, thanks for explaining~

  • Nona

    I’ve noticed that the only time that the mixture in a person’s “race” becomes an issue for them and society is when there’s an African involved in the mix. That in itself says it all.

  • http://designsdellight.com designsdelight

    You would have thought that bi racial people would have brought healing to the racial problems but I think that they have multiplied rather than diminished.

  • D-Chubb

    People are mentioning race because you were the one who put the word “black” in your little diatribe against ‘ghetto’ people. Of course, it would raise hackles. Don’t play the race card and then get defensive when you get called on it.

    I got a news flash for you, there are all kinds in the ghetto, Latin, Asian, white, immigrant, etc. Or maybe that’s just an NYC thing. There are a lot of good, hardworking, working class people in the ghetto who are struggling to keep themselves and their children afloat. That mother in Ohio who just got arrested for sending her child to a better school district is a good example. Take it from this ghetto child, don’t ever cast aspersions on an entire population by basing your arguments on stereotypes, even if you think they’re true. It could get you into much trouble.

    BTW, was the English proper enough for you?

  • D-Chubb

    Point taken. My explanation was a little vague. Nonetheless, I stand by my overall point, genetics is not the only thing that makes us black. I’m tired of the one-drop rule. I’m letting it go.

  • crmlbtrfly

    For as far back as we’ve know, being closer to white was seen as right. The black race has had this issue in our yards for eons only because whites will never accepted half and half; the only refuge biracial had was within the black community as they resent that. I’m tired of the black race having to always claim these mongrels. Let white folks chew on this issue in the 21st century because we’ve beat this dog to death! If biracial people don’t choose to identify as black, good! Stop tossing that trash in our back yards!

  • Cap71

    People like “S” believes what the media puts out about blacks. As for Gov’t handouts…do you seriously think that it was created for black people?! Can you say, Depression?! Stock market crash? Can you say 1929? Gov’t housing was created for the whites who lost most if not all their monies (along with their homes) in the stock market. Before you talk about anyone’s English…proofread before you “submit.” Oh, and using correct punctuation wouldn’t hurt either.

    Did you catch today’s 106 the Park? You know it’s your guilty pleasure. ;-)

  • Ama

    S.,

    Excellent analysis of this racial quagmire that appears to be getting stranger and more incredulous every day!!! White people made the rules and essentially oppressed and dehumanized every person who had just a miniscule amount of black ancestry, created the racial classification game and decided all the rules.

    Now, fast forward 2011, and they now say, HOLD UP!!, TIME OUT!!!, we got a black man in the oval office and we have to get some credit for him being there. Afterall, no “all black man” is smart enough without his “special white geneaology” to ascend to the highest office in the land; and, besides, he was raised by white people, SO THERE!!!

    This roundabout face by some white people who “flagellated the heck” out of candidate Obama when he ran for office is astounding. At that time, their main issue seemed to be that he was an arrogant black man with the “audacity” to think he could be elected. Even though I surmise that part of the reason that the President was even elected, was because he was really NOT considered “black” and whites could identify with him and thus be credited for being open-minded and on the right side of history. Blacks, who at the time questioned his “black enough” status, took the “electability cue” from the mainstream and attached ourselves to his wings and history was made.

    I think some biracial/mixed raced people finally see a way out of their age-old conundrum of having to self-identify as black, even if through observation, they may appear “black.” Man, it must be a tremendous burden to have emerged at the top of the “black race totem pole”, worn the sacred crown of “black first” in just about every field and profession, been fought over and courted by both blacks and whites (albeit for different reasons) and now, finally may be “allowed” to exhale and get away from all those “other types” that conspire to keep them down in that “racial hell hole ” with them.

    Here’s the deal. If it is a burden, put it down. Get out. Move on. We have so many battles to fight and dragons to slay. We can no longer be weighed down by an albatross who wants to take flight.

  • Ahmad

    McWhorter strikes again. How a linguist became a conservative spokes person I will never know. I’ve met him and wanted to smack this guy through the wall….I have to say that I like the writer’s viewpoint on this. It’s an interesting one. Is it black folk’s job to act as the identity police when the “biracial issue” is introduced? I mean some black folks “passed” back in the day, so you can’t rely on white folks to pick out EVERY undercover brutha/sista out there. They ain’t qualified (smile).

    On a serious note though, I think whites talk about race in this context just as much as blacks do; I think Asians talk about other Asians “passing” as Americanized hybrids by way of blepharoplasty surgery (the creasing of the eyelid to make them look less Asian). It’s up to the individual to decide if they are “black identified” “biracial” or “cablasian”–even if they are dark as the fig in a Newton bar. How many of us have whites in our family tree–in our genetic make-up–but continue the myth of “the Indian in my family?” Race and identity have never made sense in this country and if you are “mixed” with many other ethnic groups, “live your truth” as mama Oprah would say it. and deal with the consequences…

  • Lulu

    I agree wholeheartedly. Although other mixtures have their own set of issues as well.

  • http://www.nappilyevahaftah.net Tlynnsmith

    You’ve allowed your anger to get the best of you. You’re no “different” than those you’ve ATTEMPTED to chastise. Shoulda thought a bit more, before pressin’ the “submit” button. I guess you counted on responses from “ghetto blacks”, not quite smart enough to read between, on top of, and underneath the lines. Oh well…so much for great expectations.

    “My Thoughts” ? No, “Didn’t Think Before I Wrote This”.

    Try again.

    @ D-Chubb
    Thanks for the settin’ the record straight.

  • darkchile

    AMEN!!!! Preach! I’m sick of the bi-racial issue….oh woe is me I don’t know who I am act, is tired and played! Let white people have them….IDK. Whatever this is sooo old!

  • http://www.nappilyevahaftah.net Tlynnsmith

    …and another thing:

    I’m BLACK, and when I was growing up, I (now, hold down your wig on this one) got teased by black kids, because I was too “proper”, and many white children didn’t wanna play with me, because their parents taught them to fear black people. Uh-oh, what we gonna do with that? Hope I didn’t lock up somebody’s brain, with that piece of info.

    So, let’s keep going with the news flashes. Cuz folks act like they don’t know, and it’s too late in the game to be this clueless. Seriously. You can be “black”, and still catch hell from blacks and whites, who have a warped view of what it means to be black.

    As a full-grown, almost 50 year-old woman, I still have to deal with “ignorant” black folks, who want to “box me in”, regarding my music choices, dating choices, food choices, entertainment choices, etc. Then, there’s the ignorant white people, who are genuinely surprised when they find out I don’t have children (we all have babies, whether we have/have had husbands or not), I’m not illiterate and Al Sharpton gets on my nerves. Who missed the memo?

  • Over it!

    I so agree with you!!!

    I’m over mulattos I don’t care. . .

  • Stephanie

    D-Chubb says: “That’s why I never call Barack Obama, the first Black president. He is a biracial man raised by his Caucasian grandparents. A more accurate term would be the first president of African descent. But he aint Black like us because he wasn’t raised like us.”

    I am not addressing the original discussion. Merely this snippet and those like it

    Let’s put this matter to bed here and now. If you are African- American, there are fairly good odds that you are of mixed heritage – fact – so this pure blood argument may not be yours to even have!!. The may not be a white parent in your immediate family album, but please, you weren;t snatched from Ethiopia, as I recall, you are generaly of West African Descent, the light skin and silky hair is not really native to us.

    This mild disdain for Obama’s Africanness insults all of us. I vaguely remember Vanessa Williams, (a self-identifying black woman) as being accused of not being black enough when she won the miss America crown.

    I will concede that Obama may not be African American in the normal sense of the word but this not black like us BS needs to stop. The Blacks in America make up a small prcentage of the race in total world wide. You weren’t the first, you definitely won’t be the last. You don’t own the word any more than you are arbiters of who is and isn’t. Let it go.

  • S.

    I never said that

    Please check your facts before submitting!

  • Doc

    Wow! what a bunch of confused responses. I hope everyone here doesn’t believe 1/2 of what is written here. Lets see: Obama is “Black”, but no, he’s “Mixed” so he’s not really “Black”. But almost every AA is “Mixed” so he is “Black”. But, he was raised by “Whites” so he’s not a real “Arican American”. But there’s the one drop rule so he’s “Black”. But one drop was created by the “White man” so he’s “Mixed”, But the “White Man” is out to keep all of us down so were all “Black”???

    Hate to tell you, but the average “White Man” looks at articles like this and just scatches his head and says dam “What a waste of the human brain”.

  • COCOEL

    LMAO! That is funny. Girl, I know…sorry…Ms.. My people…our people will get you when they put themselves into a box but that is a whole different article that needs to be addressed. Your comments are true and I’m a 35 year old sister who likes sci-fi and movies in French subtitles but there are and will always be people who like different things. I think the issue becomes an issue when some black people don’t like BLACK people at all. People get it confused. They feel that black people should only like things That they feel identify with the culture. This in itself is ignorant and leaves many people less creative and adventurous bases on certain notions that blacks only do this or that…It’s good to see an older sister show us “young uns”…to do us and keep doing it….

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Stephane-Lewis-White/215900248 Stephane Lewis-White

    Even though I agree we did not start it, in some ways we are helping to perpetuate is just like many racist white are. We have a role in the system too, if we’re not fighting against it when the issue or similar issues come up in our daily lives (I’m not saying we should march on Washington about it) but, I think that we have to check ourselves in terms of the way we respond to biracial issues and why we are responding the way we do.

  • Dante

    As a multiracial person (Black/White/Cherokee) I’m more than a little disheartened by this article. The problem here is that people from all over seem to think that they have a stake in how biracial/multiracial people self-identify, and this is nothing new. Just because you (one person) don’t think that Black folks (sweeping generalizaion) care about about biracial people’s self-identification doesn’t mean that you are any more correct in your assessments than Mr. McWhorter or have access to a more diverse sample of the Black community. His perceptions have been shaped by his own experiences and so have yours. I am almost 23 years old and it has taken me this long to feel good about being Black, not because of White people, but because of my Black peers for whom I was not “Black” enough. This is just MY experience, but it is one that you are discounting because you think that it’s not relevant. As far as I’m concerned, and I can’t be the only one out there, this IS an issue that needs to be brought to the doorstep of at least some the Black community, namely some of the sectors that I have engaged with. A caveat, but one that I think could teach EVERYONE something, is that the whole idea of some monolithic “Black community” is preposterous anyway, and at times socially destructive.

  • cherbear

    In this world people call you what you look like. If you look Black your black, if you look Asian your Asian, so on and so forth.

    People like to group things. It makes life less confusing I guess. Less to think about. It’s sad that mixed race individuals can’t claim their heritage if they don’t look it. I only claim when people ask or if they see my mom. Otherwise I’m grouped into Black.

    We need to leave this situation alone and let mixed race people claim their heritage.

  • jamesfrmphilly

    james black test.

    if i tell you to meet me at midnight we gon kill all the white people and you say “kool”
    you are black.
    if i say meet me at midnight we gon kill all the white people and you say “mom?”, you can’t kill mom!”.
    you are not black.

  • http://www.Realtalk123.com Alesia Michelle

    “Black people were not the inventors of racism in this country; they were (and are) the victims of it. When will these articles be dropped off at the doorsteps of Whites? After all, it was our White founding fathers that created the “one drop rule” in the first place…And that it [the Black half] is not seen as inferior to their White half.”
    Thank you Thank you Thank you…
    I will say that I am a little thrown off when bi-racial people tend to glaze over the fact that they are indeed Black, it isn’t something i come across everyday. I am a Black but I have friends who are mixed and have dated mixed men. Race was never really an issue for them; they were who they were. The only time they ever felt that they needed to “explain” themselves was to other White people who were “curious.”

  • Alexandra

    Ok I see what both you, and Chrissy are saying. But I do agree with Chrissy’s view on this. And remember that everyone sees things differently. Which is what this discussion is about.

    I think anything past the grandparents is a reach.

    I also agree that some people force this, because they believe Black is inferior and need to go far back to feel good about themselves “Yipee, four generations ago I was (insert non-Black race)”

    But as I said, we all see things differently. You are defining multi-racial heritage in a way, I’ve never heard of. I also feel that you shouldn’t have to go that far back to discover if you are mixed. I personally am doubting any kind of mixture because my parents are descendants of slaves that were brought to the western part of Hispaniola. Mixing went on for only a short period (on that side of the island, even less in the north). My parents are Black, so are my grandparents. The likelihood of me having a non-West African ancestor is rare. I look forward to finding out more of my ancestry (in search of which present day African country my ancestors were from) before the end of this year, but it will be hard. My father didn’t know the age of his parents. He doesn’t even know where his mother is buried back in Haiti. My mom didn’t know her fathers side too well, so even getting names will be a challenge.

    I think some people use the “we all mixed anyway” to minimize experiences mixed people (specially biracial people) may face.
    No one has ever asked me why only one of parents is Black, because both of my parents are Black. Both halves of my family are ‘Black’; some other ethnicites included, but still Black. I’ve never been asked ‘what am I’, because everyone knows I’m Black. You see where I’m going?

  • Chrissy

    Yes, I think we just have a different view on what qualifies as mixed or having a mixed family tree. I see what Tomi was saying but I thought it was a stretch.

    And to add to your point Alexandra about black being inferior….I actually thnik this is what it has to deal with the majority of the time. Like..black is seen as inferior while White is seen as superior. So if a Black person has an ancestor that is ‘other’ they have moved up on the latter. But a White person who may have an ‘other’ relative doesnt feel the need to say that because White is enough by itself. Just my opinion about it anyway.

  • oknow

    i’m over it.. who cares.. the only ones w/problems to me is the ppl who want you to identify yourself.. you shouldn’t have to.. your a human being..

    my son is half black and half puerto rican.. if you see him you’ll instantly think he’s hispanic.. when i have to fill out ppwrk i put both.. i identify him mainly as black because he lives in my household and i raise him (father’s a deadbeat).. but i know he’s bi-racial and he knows it as well.. they shouldn’t have to be forced to choose and they shouldn’t have to just identify with what color their skin is.. his skin is not of an african-american person but of the hispanics but his father is not around.. so, where should he go, who should he identify himself with?!

    my family treats him no different.. hell our whole family is a mixture of races so we don’t make a big deal out of anything cause he’s still a human being..

    it’s not that serious folks.. but i do wish ppl would stop bringing it to our doorsteps..

  • Chica

    While I completely agree with the fact that the mixed-race “identity crisis” is not solely a Black issue, I totally oppose your view that Black people are incapable of being racist. Seriously??!? That’s probably one of the grossest misconceptions I’ve ever heard. I’ve experienced racism equally from both Whites and Blacks. In fact, when I moved down South a couple of years ago, I was more readily accepted by the White community. My Black peers teased me for my Nigerian name, affinity for reading, etc. I’m not saying that all Blacks are racist by any means. But for us as a people to claim that we are ONLY victims of racism and not the producers is ludicrous and extremely detrimental to the progression of our people.

  • http://www.afromohawkable.blogspot.com Afromohawkable

    I hate labels, I think I am going to call myself “hueman” from now on and see how far that gets me.

  • Be On Purpose

    The “multi-racial” discussion is going to continue to be dumped at the door steps of African Americans due to the following reasons:

    The white majority is unwilling to dismantle the structure and paradigm that exacts them privileges and power. Unlike other nations and other world ethnic groups, America is NOT going to engage in any type of “retribution” or “reparations” or “blood money” to the masses of African Americans. If anybody needs a wake- up call I invite you to read The Hidden Cost of Being African American: How Wealth Perpetuates Inequality by Thomas M. Shapiro. I also invite you to read Pedagogy of the Oppressed by Paulo Freire.

    African American men are going to continue to marry or procreate with non-black women. Our society has not dismantled it’s racist, classist, sexist structure. I read a comment on the Halle Berry thread that implied interracial couples or multiracial children were “racial healers.” I’m astonished at the absurdity of such a suggestion from a professional. ***AS IF*** these non-black partners (or the black partners for the matter)
    • Participated in the Civil Rights movement.
    • Participate or support modern Civil rights organizations, programs, and initiatives that focus on our ethnic groups permanent interests.
    • Historically literate, preserves history, and cultural relics.
    • Participates in programs designed to elevate our ethnic group’s consciousness, economy, and educational attainment.
    I.DO. NOT. THINK. SO.!!!

    These men non-black partners are NOT activists in any way shape or form.
    Multi-racial people with one black parent who usually is a black man don’t wish to identify with their blacksness because their farther taught them through example to be ashamed of it and to hate it. He did so because he lacks ethnic self-respect, is historically illiterate, and didn’t grow up in a functional black community. I blame black men who intermarried this way for any grief their OWN children experience because of their neglect and failures. It’s not my job or EVERY BLACK person’s job to massage the egos of Multi-racial people just like it’s not their job to do that for us. The complete lack of self determination and loss of self-esteem is VERY evident when multi-racial people feel entitled to dump on us, disparage us, and debase us. Not ALL black people grew up or were nurtured by color/skin shade freaks. SOME OF US did grow up in a functional black community and I’M NOT going to apologize for doing so.

    Finally, I believe that there is NO lack, scarcity, shortage, deprivation, or even separation. I believe the Universe is filled with abundance and their enough for everyone. All of this ultimately comes back to one’s mind and what you allow in it. There is no “man shortage” African American men are not the only black men in the world or the only men in the world. Interracial marriage is a problem because our society is still marred in inequality and many in our ethnic group are so distressed from the pressures and the consequences of the pressures from the structure that they are pushed into the arms of another to escape and exact those privileges. It’s NOT that they did it: IT’S HOW THEY DID IT. I include black women here especially after reading blogs were the death and destruction of the masses of black people was celebrated all in effort so that ones crotch is tickled by a white so and so.
    Get real people!

  • Sarah

    Even though I can’t stand John McWhorter, I agree.

  • Shabba

    What is a Puerto Rican? The last time I checked, the island of Puerto Rico is made up of native indians, blacks, and decendants of the spanish conquistadors who mated with the island natives. When you make the assertion that “Puerto Rican” is a separate racial group, you’re telling the world at large that puerto ricans are a version white people, when the vast island majority are people of color. What does a” hispanic” look like? There are black, white, asian and native american hispanics. The people who call themselves hispanics, have allowed themselves to be sub-divided into different ethnic groups, with the lighter skin people being more civilized than their darker counter-parts. I see this divide and conquer mentality all over the Caribbean, Latin and Central America, Africa, Asia and here in the US. The white supremacy has done such a good job of telling us that we’re inferior, that some of us carry that mental illusions amoung ourselves. Meanwhile, white people are injecting botok into their lips to get them plump, butt and breast implants, tanning year round, and trying to wear their hair in locks, braids,etc while we act ashamed of our natural beauty…Race was a construct created by white people, since they are only 1/10% of the total world population. Look around the globe, Africa, Asia, South America, Pacific Islanders, etc, the majority of people are peoples of color. The whiteman knows he is inferior because of lack of melanin, so he has created these racial groups, with white being at the very top and black being the most undesireable. Yet ever chance they (whites) get, they are always getting into bed with people who does not look like them, to produce children with color…White men and women are alwasy proud to put their colored offspring on display as if they had anything to do with the color of these offsprings…

  • Naomi

    I’m shocked in 2011 people are still having this debate. RACE DOES NOT EXIST! Why must we have arguments over how people classify themselves, surely there are more important things out there to discuss.

  • isis

    Tell em!!! I totally agree with this post especially when you speak about how Halle calls multi-racial people race healers. That’s totally absurd. Maybe they are healers with white folks cuz they are more enemies of black people, but for blacks multi-racials are just more folks who will hate us. More people that will take away our shine and accomplishments. Its so sad. And yes, I blame their black fathers, who hate themselves thus procreating with the enemy, then passing that self-hatred to their biracial children. Mulattos/Multi-racials, you want to have someone to hate and blame?? Blame your black father for teaching you that your black half is inferior and worthy to be hated. Don’t blame me.

  • Jinx Moneypenny

    Halle Berry’s mother wasn’t wrong. This is America. As a White woman in this country she was clearly aware of how her daughter was going to be viewed, regardless of how she personally might have felt about it. It began in the home: “Look, I’m your mom, I’m White, but you’re half and your Black side wins this. That’s how it is. Know it, study it, accept it.” Sure, it may have done her a disservice according to some, who don’t accept her as a ‘Black’ woman, but that’s what she comes from, and you can either take it, or you can leave it. Because it is what it is.

    I believe that Halle has quite the handle on how she self-identifies. Because of that no one can deny she is more accepted by AAs as a whole than people like Mariah or Tiger, who both refuse to self-identify as solely Black. And they all have the right to call themselves whatever they want, whether that’s to acknowledge every facet or not.

    Does it affect me in my day to day as a Canadian Black woman of Caribbean descent? Nope. But it exists. And that’s enough.

  • Lauren

    Oh please Mythoughts is absoluetly right! Black people are always trying to have it both ways you don’t want to claim Tiger and say f**k him yet he’s just ‘black’ enough for you to make snide jokes about and mock and gossip if he or Mariah are so ‘not’ black then why are you discussing them?! And maybe Tiger came up Cabliwhatever is because he was SICK TO DEATH of every pinhead yacking about his racial make-up as if it had anything to do with the price of a steak dinner in new York. And what he can’t bed whoever he wants and pursue whatever career he wants without worrying about the ‘man’ trying to ruin him?! That whole whiny a$$ nonsense form the media was about a bunch of very INSECURE white males who couldn’t stand to see this any part Negro busting them in their OWN sport and not only bedding their women but HOT A## white women. How much cash money you want to bet if BOTH his parents were Asian nobody and I mean nobody black folks included would be so freaking up in arms about this. Or if he were with the typical bleached blond 300 pound trailer park reject Bill Clinton isn’t black AT ALL yet a lot of black people had NO problem rsuhing to defend him but a HALF black man didn’t ‘like’ us so it’s f**k him WHAT?!!

  • Lauren

    Couldn’t agree more and don’t worry your pretty little head about isolode she seems to have some incessant need about psychoanalyzing any person or mentality that does not agree with her own.

  • Emmeaki

    This “you look black, so you’re black” argument is totally irrelevant if the mixed-race person doesn’t look black. Some mixed people I know don’t look black at all and they will not be treated as a black person, even if that’s how they choose to identify.

  • Marguerite

    Personally, I could care less how biracial people want to identify, that is their battle. Black people in general have to learn to love themselves and shake off the “conditioning” that has been ingrained in us since coming to America. Learn to love yourselves for the people we are. Learn to be proud of all our accomplishments, learn to rejoice in the difference that is ours. If you don’t know what the accomplishments are, take some Afrocentric course at college, most of them have an African-American studies division now!!!

  • Queen

    Why do so much hate blacks so much?, no matter how much we mix we will never breed out the black race. We come from one dark skinned man and woman, get over it.

  • shutup

    STFU already. You haven’t walked two moons in our shoes, so shut up. WHAT?!?!?!!! yeah.

  • shay

    i just wish a lot of black people would get over this light-skin dark-skin thing. It’s not just about being mixed it’s also about LOOKING mixed too. I’m light-skinned, skinny, with long hair and black people ask me if i’m mixed all the time. And when I say “no, I’m just black” they give me a look like I might be lying. Some have even gone further and asked me “are u sure?”. It’s amazing! Almost like i MUST be mixed to look like this. Black men and women associates often allude to how skinny and how small my butt is as if i’m not a real black woman because i dont have big butt. I see why this is an issue. Because black people (not all but a LOT) make it an issue. A stupid one at that. I grew up just like any other black person in America. Dealing with the same pressure and discrimination. But yet I still felt excluded from my OWN people because I’m “not black enough”, regardless of how vocal I am about community issues and how much I love my people. My grandmother even said it once, “poor baby, too white to be black and to black to be white.” CRAZY

  • monica

    As being a biracial myself(black/white) if the people belieave that being biracial means being black even through our number’s are rising. Dose it mean in time we can have justice over mix our race?

  • Kimberly

    McWhorter strikes again. I am a tri racial person. I am Black, White and Native. I am content in whatever that means. However, I know that even though I have light skin, light eyes, and long flowing hair that I in America I am considered by many to only have one race…BLACK. I refuse to tilt windmills to get others to see me as I really am genetically. The honest truth is that for most people with even one drop, when it is known, all bets are off . If his sounds mid Victorian to you, so be it. For many of what we call African Americans today their label would have been mulatto. This is nothing new. It isn’t special ,it isn’t tragic and it isn’t a magic carpet ride away from societies problems, it is America. What we call bi racial has always been a part of what is called the BLACK community. I don’t think most Black people want to make people anything but as another poster mentioned people are going to see what they think they see and call it that. .If there is anger it is in the visceral contempt for even the concept of blackness for a number of first generation multi-racial folks. The only difference between them and those that came before them is that now their parents have the option of marriage and perhaps thee white side of their family acknowledges their existence. Blackness is not something to be scraped off the bottom of ones shoes it is something that deserves love tenderness and respect and when it is treated in any other fashion THAT is what makes BLACK people angry. To my fellow children of the Swirl, Yes, it takes a lot of strength to live Black in America but I wouldn’t change a thing. Black is what gives America its groove and swing. To paraphrase Duke Ellington, “You ain’t got a thing if you ain’t got that swing….” That about says it all.

  • Emmeaki

    It’s ridiculous! I have brown skin and curly hair and people always ask me if I’m mixed and when I say no, they keep insisting that they see “something else” in me. Then I have to bring up my great-great-grandparents who were white and Native American and then they are finally satisfied. Well, if we go back that far, then almost every black person in America is “mixed”! I won’t even get into the conversations about strangers asking me if my hair is real!

  • Ms. Information

    lol…I have another one James…

    If I’m biracial and I need a scholarship to school…call me black.

    If I’m biracial and I need a job, call me white.

    Furthermore, how far back does claiming biracial go? If my great grandma was white, am I biracial? Must it be an immediate parent?

    If you are biracial, identify how you want to, but if you get treated black (many whites see black as black no matter the shade) don’t ask for support when you get treated badly.

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  • Breana

    I don’t think its unreasonable to claim one of the parents either do you?. I will never identity myself as black because black people believe should identity with that side, I will always and the biracial friends I have classify myself as mixed because I will never diss my mother for somebody else egos and self esteem and because people think that’s what I “should” do. Smh

  • https://plus.google.com/115167294186518990860 LittleBabyBug Jones

    welp as usual someone is mixed and not black because the vast majority of these unions arre black men and white women. go figure. i’ll care more when it’s the other way around.

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