Category Archives: Bi-Racial

Black Love Shaming

Greetings World Wide Web,

Have you walked in a public place and seen two people walking together  from 2 different races and just stared? Is it your curiosity or just your bias steering the wheel? What’s your for or against argument among the people whom you’re comfortable enough to let it all hang out? I’m talking about those conversations with parents, siblings and besties.  If you want true feelings about race relations and/or how someone really feels, you’re probably going to have to be a fly on the wall during those times. Other than that, you’re likely getting the PG-13 version. Shaming is deeper. It’s when someone is calling you out because of your choice of a mate. It can be subtle or blatant, but it’s certainly meant to call out your choice of a different race as not the thing to do.

I don’t think we need to come to that level of candor to make progress. People should be entitled to their opinions as long as those opinions don’t physically or emotionally harm another person directly.

This piece just crossed my mind because I was recently in a forum.  I was looking at the timeline and there were these celebrations of “black love.”  My perspective on it was totally different. The timeline was showing “TI & Tiny” “Beyonce & Jay-Z” “Mariah & Nick” and plenty of others. I thought, Tiny is biracial, Beyonce is tri-racial and so is Mariah. How is that “black love?” I guess what makes them “black” is how they’ve chosen to live their lives? Wouldn’t that then make “black love” essentially include mixed couples? I’m not petitioning an endorsement. I’m ultimately just addressing the current logic behind today’s realities and inconsistencies. More often than not when we see the more obvious mixtures where a black person and a white person or a black person and some other very obvious different race or ethnicity are in a relationship there’s chatter. Y’all know the chatter.  I’m not saying it’s everyone, but it’s some. With a history deeply rooted in 1 drop  that would make a “black” person’s offspring “black” or at least a consideration in the conversation of “diaspora” when there’s at least 1 parent who is black,  it’s hard to believe there is any level of shaming that takes place, but it does.  Mercy forgive if the 2 people who are in their interracial or multi-ethnic relationship has a child & that child doesn’t hold tight to their “black” heritage.  They will quickly be classified as racially confused.  Don’t let them say it on Twitter… There is an individual engine called ‘black Twitter” that will educate them quickly or make them wish that they never even spoke in the 1st place.

In other race and ethnicity around the world, children with 1 black parent aren’t allowed to classify as just that ethnicity or race solely in many cases including being mixed black and white American.  Ex: half Asian/black children aren’t often moving to Asia with the sole classification of being just Asian. Largely they are now mixed race. They can comfortably be embraced like Kimora Lee or Karreuche among “black” people. The kicker is that when their parents are in the interracial relationship, they’re often not accepted by either Asian or black Americans communities comfortably in many cases.

As I take a look at “black” celebrities there is a high biracial identity span with even Latinas who are biracial and tri-racial playing black women parts in movies and etc.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen a “black” American women playing a Latina part to date or anything thereof.

This  is stretching the rabbit hole of colorism (darkskin & lightskinned) black people far beyond reach because “some black” is “black” but interracial couples are still shamed. The media is making “biracial” the new face of beauty everywhere you look and the India Aries & Lupita Nyongos are “cute for dark women” You’d think with all the shaming that would be all you see on posters instead of lengthening techniques to “mix look” Z and tight S-shaped curls because the “nappy hair” is truly not in, but we’ve silently made it movement. Just walk down the aisle at your local beauty supply store. The faces on the products all look biracial. This is another blog worth pages so I continue along to the point.

Why then would there be “black love” shaming?  I think more than ever it’s time to embrace the rich diversity of the “black” community. It’s also time to have a coming to Savior meeting about realities long ignored and how to sweep up at our own back door. There’s a unique heart for love, acceptance and long-suffering where some practices are outdated and it’s time to ultimately embrace a seemingly evolving reality. You  don’t have to eyeball the white woman walking down the street holding hands with her black man. Trust me, she’s facing her own set of unique circumstances from people who look like her just for standing by who she loves. She probably needs a sistah’s help when she gives birth to a child that has curls and she needs to learn a moisture regimen just to keep the hair from breaking. She’ll also need help with fully understanding what the black experience is and how to effectively introduce her “black” child to society. Whether she/he thought of that or not before she fell in love is not relevant. In the black community we marvel over the mixtures at how “cute” mixed children are, but shame the couples who make them in some cases. There’s also the added part that if the couple bares a child based on a current census of understanding, the child will return right back to identifying as “black” but “yella, or light-skinned or red bone” or something like that. There’s a whole heap of “good hair” sayings where biracial people blend quietly into “black” culture with the “black folk” with Indian in their blood.

I know very passionate people who didn’t choose to fall in love with someone who is racially or ethnically different from them. This doesn’t change their black experience. It also won’t change their children’s experience either. I’ve found it to be a bridge over troubled waters in some cases.  It surely hasn’t changed mine. Contrarily I’ve been invited behind closed doors and even invited to conversations from people who look at my world from the outside. It increased my awareness and even made me more passionate about my identity. It didn’t happen before making me feel horrible for years. I’ve had several coming to Savior meetings with myself over the years. I’ve heard hard truths, mean opinions, been wounded and stopped in my tracks with wanting to be around anyone who doesn’t look like me. I lived to love again. Every single new experience with an awesome person built me back up so I could jump back into this wonderful diverse world of people with so much I can learn from.

I purposefully don’t stare at people who are brave in their life choices. That takes courage. LGBT, mixed couples and so many other people who aren’t what our society places it’s “normal” stamp of approval on.  When they walk into the world elated with the love being offered to them by another human they should be embraced. If I make eye contact, which I normally try to do, I smile at all the beautiful brave souls I see because I know what they feel. I also want to send them love and light.

Contrarily, for the people who openly intend to shame with their words, I feel sorry for them. They’re missing out on realities that whether they’re comfortable with them or not, are moving forward and growing stronger.

Until the Next,

XOXO,

MarjorieIam

 

 

“The Race Representative”

Greetings World Wide Web!

The blog part of this project had grown cobwebs.  I’m wiping them away and picking my pen up again.  It’s not without some hesitation.  If you are a dreamer and doer, I think you can attest to the fact that when you give birth to an idea so many things, people and circumstances present themselves to, I assume make sure that you’re serious about the journey.  Today I want to talk about a detriment to the world of peace; the pest to the conversation of diversity and inclusion.  The race representative!  We’ve all met them.  The person who takes it upon themselves to speak for their entire racial, cultural or ethnic classification.  They act as though they are the gatekeepers of what is, what’s accepted and even if you are accepted by their entire classification.  The racial representative is a self-proclaimed job!  You’re not voted in, you just appoint yourself.  When the race representative speaks, they assume the place for all of us, we, them, they, nosotros, vosotros……you catch my drift.  What’s worse is that the majority of the people with this position that I’ve met are extremists.  Their individual representation leaves no room for individualism.  I’d almost given up my dreams over “race representatives”  When I began my journey of discovery; actually trying to experience people of different races & cultures, I was met by many representatives.  I was even confronted by race representatives of my race.  I’ve been told that, “I’m not “black enough” or I was lost or somehow confused about the entire world now because I don’t see things as they do.   Some of the race representatives were amazingly open and welcoming and others were guards with a keep out sign.  I guess you can say I was naïve about what it actually takes to mingle between races and cultures.  My being in an interracial, multicultural relationship carry the worse scars of all, but they made me want to stand up and find solutions.  Had I let some unfavorable experiences be even how I receive or understand an entire classification of people, I probably wouldn’t have acted.   After regaining my courage, and having some rock star experiences with other people of the same racial and ethnic classifications, I realized that I had only met someone who felt in their heart that truly their thoughts, experiences and opinions represented the collective.  This is so far from the truth in EVERY race, culture and ethnic people.  Recognizing that in many countries, especially ones like the US, where there is just a melting pot of people, and so much depends on what group you belong to foster this type of behavior.  You truly HAVE TO pick a side.  As the world is becoming increasingly more and more diverse, in growing numbers you’re finding people wanting to express their individuality.  People want a voice, and they don’t want to be forced or told what to think by the main stream.  What do you do when you have a child that is now both of their very different parents?  History in many countries have made people pick sides, like the One Drop Rule in the US and so many others around the world that are similar.   In my case, I checked the box “Other” on everything that I could find for my children.  I wanted to express and go deeper into who they are.   My journey has introduced me to countless, very diverse people who select the same classification for many reasons.  I listen attentively as they tell me stories about “race representatives” who particularly unfavorable ones, have discouraged them to discover diverse worlds and people.  To the colorful seeker and diverse person, I say, you now have a name for this person.  The next time you meet a “race representative” just smile and know that this too shall pass, and rocking awesome people await!

XOXO,

Others’Mother aka MarjorieIam

Bi-racial Black, The New Face of Black America?

Mulatto-collage-2

 

Hello World Wide Web,  Welcome to We Check Other.  I tried to find a picture that had as many bi-racial Americans on it as possible.  Don’t quote me on each of them, but they look pretty accurate.  Each person on the collage above is bi-racial.  Taking the focus briefly away from well-known bi-racial Americans to just regular popular culture and media.  Visiting a store in America and I’m sure maybe around the globe in some instances, if you pick up a Pampers box, cereal box or just any normal item that a person buys; normally there is a fair-skinned child with large soft looking curls on the front.  I visited a beauty supply store recently and while walking down the natural hair aisle with products for “black women”, observing the front of most of the bottles, even perms, I noticed there were fair-skinned young woman with large loose curls that are more parallel to the face of someone who is actually biracial.  Just from a preliminary look at what’s popular in music, time after time there are women and men, who are quite popular who are daughters and sons of white mothers and black fathers and even vise versa.  What makes the post topic  relevant is that MOST if not all of them, proudly proclaim they are ONLY black.

I’m not saying that the people above or even in popular culture are wrong in their affirmations.  Most people are aware of something called the One Drop Rule.  It’s not a fantasy.  It’s real.  In most states it was enforced by law at least until the 1980’s or so.  A person owning up to 1/32 black heritage was qualified has black only regardless of father or mother race.

The One-Drop Rule is a historical, colloquial term in the US that a person with any trace of sub-Saharan ancestry, however small or invisible, cannot be considered White unless the person has an alternative non-White ancestry they can claim, such as Native American, Asian, Arab, Australian Aboriginal; they must be considered Black.

What a blow! So anyone else can mix with white and even become “white”?  The answer in plenty of cases is yes, or at least enjoy white privilege.  Of course this law is applicable for claiming “white” as your race but what about Asian, Native American, Middle Eastern with a mixture of black?  Are the rules the same rules? Can you no longer solely belong to the parent group now being mixed black? Then there’s the component of ethnic & features; such as Middle Eastern, or Asian. The strength of their exclusive features can exclude them as well. Passing?  Depends on how you look? Maybe? If you look too ethnic no, if not; lucky you? Maybe. I’m not sure but I would love someone who knows to chime in.

Bringing it all in, so most of the people above were born before 1980.  Their reality was the one drop rule/law.  They didn’t have a choice.  Of course these ideas are also the baby boomer generation and the ones that follow who have the majority of wealth and control in the US and abroad.  This keeps the ideas of what was and how it should be is alive and well.  If you’re mixed black, then you’re black.  Mixed is a concept that doesn’t exist, of course until the Census threw it into the Algebraic human salad in the year 2000 saying, yes you have a choice.

What about the Y generation and beyond? Which is 1980 births and beyond it I might add.  The new census? People being able to at least describe their full heritage, even if they aren’t yet recognized that way by the world.   Will generation Y be the trend setters? “Big dreamers!”   Most people in this generation aren’t exposed to the realities that once were.  If they are it’s because they’re  being taught.  From a sociological perspective we all learn from our parents and environments.  Now with record immigration, and the official striking down of the one drop rule, and Loving vs Virginia, the opportunity for people to love, marry, simply have relationships and even adopt across racial borders are a reality.   We see the world changing and becoming more and more diverse before our eyes.  As a matter of fact a few of the people listed above have children that no longer even “look” black at all because of who they love and married.

What do we do?  Is the solution to continue to pass off bi-racial people as black only?  Even after the rules are no longer applicable.  I think there’s a universal fear of all bi-racial people being carted off to misfit land and not being able to claim how they feel in their soul.  If a person feels black only then by all means they should be allowed to live there.  In fact if they were born before the rules changed, lets not go reversing rules.  BUT if we are to move forward as a country, then we should start having real discussions about the new rules and the identities of children and adults that now hang in the balance because of them.

Thank you so much for stopping by.  Please join the conversation.  Every Tuesday night @ wecheckother on Twitter beginning at 9pm EST we will hold a one hour chat discussing topics like this and so many others.  Please use hashtag #wecheckother & #letstalkrace to participate and join in.

Until the next,

XOXOXO,

Others’Mother