The Half Series – When Black People Look White (1 of 3)

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes, 7 seconds. Contains 1024 words

This is a three part series about colorism.


Take a look at my friend, Katie Burrell:

Is Katie Black? Is Katie White? Is she both?

Katie’s ethnic background will be revealed at a later date, but carefully look at her face, study her features and skin tone because she is my poster child for this series. More pictures of Katie will be shown later.

-Oooh, her daddy must be White or High Yellow!

-Your daughter is beautiful! She looks nothing like you. (Yes, in the same breath.)

-She must look just like her daddy.

-Is that your daughter?

-Is your daughter Mexican?

Over the past eight years the above quotes have all been said to or asked of me because of my daughter. I am a Black woman and I have a child by a White man. Those words once bothered me when my daughter was a baby, but I am used to it now and I respond accordingly with a healthy amount of venom in my tone.

When I found out I was carrying a baby by a White man I wasn’t happy. There is a long story behind this that will be shared with you in my memoirs one day, but one of the reasons is the fact that I knew I was going to have to deal with all these insulting questions and statements. And, the staring…oh gawd, people could win staring contests when they see a dark skinned Black woman with a child that appears White or is more than a few shades lighter.

I also worried that I would not know how to or be able to deal with raising a biracial child. It may seem ridiculous to you, but I really thought about what type of things I would have to teach her about her background and how to deal with people liking or disliking her because of things like her skin tone or her hair texture. I also worried that she would be different than me and that she would catch hell because of it.

I was right and I was wrong. I’m her mother. She has my DNA. I am raising her and I deal with any issues that may occur quite well. If she had come out half of whatever the hell Yoda is from Star Wars  I would still love her lil’ brownish-green ass to death.

Ethnicity and color are not issues for me. They never have been.  I love everyone and I dislike everyone. My feelings are equal opportunity. I won’t love you just because you’re Black and I won’t hate you just because you’re White. Like someone once said – “Just because you’re my color, it doesn’t mean you’re my kind.”  Truer words have never been spoken.

For some odd and stupid ass reason many of us continue to be color struck.  I really think most of us are ignorant or at the very least forgetful. Black people who look White is not a new phenomenon. Back in the day Black folks who appeared more White than Black “passed” all the time. Hell, some people are still passing today. There are some people that could pass but don’t like actress, Jennifer Beals, and my man, actor, Wentworth Miller.

Look at him:

– Get The Half Series ebook on Amazon

Would you have guessed that Wentworth Miller has a parent with Black heritage? Well, he does! Wikipedia says: his father is of African-American, Jamaican, English, German, Jewish, and Cherokee background, and his mother is of Russian, French, Dutch, Lebanese, and Syrian ancestry. I first laid eyes on Wentworth in the film The Human Stain. The film is about a man who passes for Jewish, but is really Black. If you haven’t seen it, check it out. It’s a good flick! Anthony Hopkins plays Wentworth’s role as an older man. We all know Anthony Hopkins is not Black in any way, shape, or form (that we know of), but I’m sure he was cast in the role to make a valid point, not all Black people appear “Black”.

Anyway, back to Wentworth; I fell in love as soon as I saw him on the screen. He is a beautiful man. I saw The Human Stain around the same time Prison Break started on the FOX network, so I became a groupie and began watching it every week thereafter. Wentworth has also appeared in two Mariah Carey videos, It’s Like That and We Belong Together.

Some of you who know me are laughing and probably saying,”Yea, she likes ’em light, bright, and damn near White.”  True, I do tend to go gaga more for light skinned men or mixed dudes. I guess I like the best of both worlds. Sue me! When Black and White come together it creates something beautiful. That’s not to say that when anyone else comes together that it’s ugly, so don’t go there, but I like what I like! There are no self hating reasons for it and I love chocolate brothas too. I like men! Period.

I can’t find one to make my boyfriend, but that’s another story.

Again, back to Wentworth, I was sprung after seeing him in The Human Stain, but when I read an interview where he explained that he only portrays a White man for TV, I fell in love. Why? Because he had the nerve, courage and pride to reveal who he is despite the fact that he does not typically fit what most people perceive as a person of color.

My true inspiration for starting this series are Michael Jackson’s children:

-Those are not his biological children.

-They look nothing like him or any of the other Jackson kids.

-Those kids are White.

-White never trumps Black. Never!

-Why is he trying to pass these White kids off as his children?

These are just a few of the ridiculous things I have heard aimed at Michael and his children. These comments upset me and I take them personally because as you have already read, I get some of the same ignorant reactions because of my daughter.

In the next part of the series I will get deeper into Michael’s children and the issues many people have when Black and White DNA come together to create a child that appears only White.

In the meantime, let’s get back to Katie. Answer this poll:

  Read Part 2 of The Half Series



  1. This series has nothing to do with the one drop rule or Americas opinion on race and identity. It’s about owning and accepting all parts of yourself. “You are what you look like” makes no sense at all, especially when you take your previous comments about your child into consideration.

  2. Maybe its the one drop rule. In America you are what you look like. Anyhow, not my issue.

  3. And my question/comment is not meant to offend anyone. My daughter is often mistaken for being biracial. She has the `light skin curly hair’ thing going on lol and people assume her father is hispanic, but he is black. People have always assumed he was biracial also or Pacific Islander. I have five siblings all with varying skintones despite the fact we have tje same black parents, one light one dark. So I know appearance is nothing really, but at the same time I can only assume appearance is the reason why Ive heard or read celebrities such as Mariah Carey or Alicia Keys say they are black women, but Ive never heard them delcare themselves to be white women. I have never heard anyone refer to the President as a White man, but despite his well known mixed heritage he is referred to as Black as if thats it. Even as a kid, I often wondered why biracial girls were often casted to play the daughter in a black family. I know light skin and curly hair doesn’t mean a person is biracial or is of multiethnic heritage, but there always managed to be a dark or brown skinned brother with ‘kinky’ hair.

  4. And white too or whatever race the other parent is but no one says that. Ive yet to meet a biracial person with a black parent who only identifies with the other parents ethnicity. Obviously because, probably based on appearance, you cannot.

  5. Most people in America have some mixed ancestry. My parents, grandparents, and great grandparents are black. Whatever Native American or European ancestors I have (and there are some waaaaay back there) are nameless. So it trips me out when biracial people call themselves black, as opposed to White, or Chinese or whetever the ethnicity of the other parent. Its like black is the miscellaneous box.

  6. I’m living in Australia, but I am from Canada. There is a big difference in acceptance of race in ethnicity between those two countries. I have never encountered racism until I came to Australia. I am not black, but I am mixed burmese, east indian and french…i look like a white person with olive skin…But I have had random people asking me if im half cast, which is insulting and then I have had people tell me that I am just canadian and deny me my whole ethnicity. I am a product of colonialism and the struggles my ancestors have gone thru due to white mans colonial take over of the asias. Im proud of my heritage, but here it isn’t accepted…i am just WHITE here. However in canada I am more accepted as ethnically mixed.

  7. Both of you, Linda and Jay, need to read this three part series again (if you even read it thoroughly the first time) without the chip on your shoulder and with a clear head so that you better understand exactly what I am saying. Afterwards, read some of the comments I have left for others, because you both are unnecessarily ranting because you don’t get it. Thanks for reading and visiting the Dangerous Lee Network.

  8. I will input just one last thing. The author of this piece seems to take issue with people that are part black being labeled as “white” but in truth, these people, as are alot of people of “mixed” ancestry (ie Jennifer Beals, Mariah, Wentworth, Carly Simon, Carol Channing, Tom Sizemore) all of whom are white in appearance are undeniably Caucasian. What one of my biggest pet peeves is people that confuse race with ethnicty. You can be RACIALLY mixed but be considered Caucasian. This is why in America now they even label Hispanics as WHITE Hispanics or BLACK hispanics based on your RACIAL appearance. So Lee if you refuse to call these people WHITE, then you cannot argue that they appear to be and undeniably have all the characteristics that make them Caucasian. To call them Negroids or Asiatic would be ABSURD!

  9. HI all, I like the posts made my Jay and AD. As a “mixed” person (1/2 Italian, 1/4 Irish and 1/4 Caribbean) I identity as white and feel a strong connection to my Italian side and family and married into an Italian family. I consider myself a mixed white person and have never been denied my identity by whites. Blacks are the ones that are often surpised to hear I am part black and then seem to be resentful I don’t claim it. Definitely not all, but some. What I funny Lee about your comment about these people being BLACK with mixed heritage instead of WHITE with mixed heritage is that it IS arrogant. I am mostly European, as is Wentworth and if you read up on Mariah Carey, she is technically only a 1/4 black as her father was 1/2 black and 1/2 venezualan and her mother is full IRISH. Even some of the people you interviewed on your site that are a full 1/2 black have stated they see themselves as mixed and one girl said she felt culturally more akin to her Italian side. You don’t speak for all mixed people calling us black. Some of us identify with neither exclusively, some idenity as black, some as white. I think alot of it has to do with where you have been most accepted (with me its been with white society) and what you look like mostly.

  10. @ AD Powell, I have followed alot of your work on Mulitracial topics and teachings against the one drop rule and just know there are alot of blacks in agreement with you. I have read alot of work and was pleasantly surprised to see you on here. This is destroying us as a race. We need to stop claiming mixed whites, Latinos, etc and alot of other groups that do not want a black label. Blacks have no issue when a white looking person like Mariah calls herself “black” which makes NO sense and all about destroys REAL black girls self image , but God forbid she claimed her mostly white ancestry (She could easily say she was Italian or European). and she would be accused of passing. Passing for what? For what she mostly is? SMH! If Mariah had identified with her fathers Latino heritage and mothers white heritage this would never be an issue. I know plently of people with a heritage similar to Mariah AND Wentworth that are not labeled “black” Did either of you see the article on Madame Noire 25 celebrities you did not know were black? REALLY? This passing shit is still alive in 2014? Not one black person on that list. And peopple wonder why there is no solidarity in our community? You loko at any other group and there is pride in their culture. To be considered Chinese you have to be born of two Chinese parents, two be Jewish, born of a Jewish mother, but blacks would claim Conan O’Brien if he suddenly disclosed some black lineage. (Oh, he light skinneded) No pride…

  11. LMAO @ Dangerous. AD POWELL is right. Creoles, Melungeons (MOST of whom look and live as white people i.e. Tom Hanks and Heather Locklear both whom have disclosed Melungeon Tri Racial ancestry) are multiracial, not black. And in these two peoples case, they are WHITE. Black one drop arrogance/ignorance at its finest. More accurate to say these are mixed WHITE people. They look like negroids to you? Wow, black people sure are blind to racial phenotypes. LMAO. White skin, light eyes and straight hair = African to one droppers WOW! Yeah, and I am black and I think this is nonsense. As a black friend of mine once said, you should look her up on Facebook as she is big into black empowerment, blacks need to have pride in their race and in their African features. Embracing white looking folks as black is just a secret desire to erase oneself and ones race. Black people with mixed heritage, And you wonder why people think we are stupid! Its llike Wendy Williams asked Carol Channing if her life changed when she discovered she was black. IGNORANT. She is still a white woman with some black in her! Stop NEGATING us!

  12. You know what I am sick of? People reading this series and not understanding or comprehending the points I am making. I wrote this series because people will often look at a mixed person (half White half Black) and say that they do not look mixed or they do not look Black. This happens because we get caught up in skin color. I agree with you that we should celebrate and accept all parts of ourselves. I believe I said that! Did you read the entire series?

    Also, I am not aware of what Mariah or Wentworth’s genealogy percentage is, and neither are you. However, neither of them identify as White. Why do you have a problem with mixed people not identifying as White? I really don’t understand it, but as a mixed person if you want to identify as White because that’s how other people see you, that’s your prerogative. In America, just as anywhere else, being Black is about blood lines, but of course because culture and racism varies all over the world things like skin tone and appearance muddy things up.

  13. Oh, and may I humbly add that it does seem to me that in America, being black does have everything to do with cultural identification and nothing whatsoever to do with blood lines or appearance. If someone like Wentworth does not identify with being white, but I do, is that not a cuitural difference? When I look at someone like Mariah Carey, she is smiliar in phenotype to say, Sophia Vergara or Penelope Cruz, both of whom would be considered white or white Latinas. The difference is obviously cultural as appearance wise there is really no difference between the three as Mariah is FAR from a black or African woman.

  14. While I find this site very interesting I will agree to disagree. As a mixed race person from the UK (who is white in phenotype) I have always identified with being white although I freely and proudly boast my non white (african and arab) ancetsry) but I am MOSTLY Euopean (German and Dutch). Point is, I am still looked at as white. The same way Wentworth’s father would be considered. I guess my question to you, as well as to alot of black american would be, if someone clearly has a white racial appearance, but has some black ancestry, why do you so freely label them black and not a white person with black ancestry. It seems hypocritcal that you would deny all of their European blood for the little of black they may have but get offended if they identify by what s the majority of their racial background. VERY confusing! I have never met a non white person here in the UK that got offended by my ideniftying with being white because that is how everyone (including them) perceive me. I probably have about as much black blood as Wentworth and he is no where NEAR half black. Just curious. Isn’t that the whole one dropping phenomenon as neither Wentworth nor Mariah Carey are a whole hafl sub saharan African?

  15. We can agree to disagree. I’m not arrogant. You went there with me! If you want to refer to Wentworth as a White guy that is part Black, you can do that, but Wentworth himself does not identify as White. You’ll have to ask him what he thinks about that. Also, Wentworth is only a small part of this series and not even the poster child. He’s used as an example of how racially diverse people are and how someone with Black heritage can appear to only be White.

    For example – I don’t know if you watch Blood, Sweat and Heels, but cast member and former model, Mica Hughes, appears White but both of her parents are Black. I don’t know her parents complete ethnic background, but her father appears to be “mixed” and her mother isn’t very dark, but they are Black/African American people.

  16. Dangerous, If Wentworth’s father is African-American, Jamaican, English, German, Jewish, and Cherokee and his mom is white, yes you are one dropping him beecause his father looks white and he is also heavily mixed with other ethnicities that are NOT black. You dont think its a little ridiculous notto say Wentworth is a white guy that is part black? That was my point. You keep saying people with a BLACK parent, his father is not a “black” man. Why are we so arrogant?

  17. On the contrary, sites like mine and this one – (also mine) promote pride in our “race” or “races”. Can you guys read or comprehend?

    Also, someone who is African-American, Jamaican, English, German, Jewish, and Cherokee is not White. He may be pale, but he’s not White. And, again, this is not about skin tone. *sigh*

  18. I have 4 biracial children all of which have my complexion except ONE!!!!! 1/2 BLACK & 1/2 WHITE. So it is possible and happens more than blacks or whites who harbor hate in there heart for the other race want to admit. I do tend to agree that certain people do grasp for straws when it comes to race when it benefits them, but there are the people out there that legitimately look like one or the other and are equal parts of both. They are the ones who suffer the ignorance of judging by each race who would like to remain “pure” when biblically we are all the same and our racial divide stems from the tower of bable. I dont want to get into a huge debate about who is right in this all I know is my situation and the affects people who see themselves or there race as supreme to another have on my family and how judgement have done nothing to improve the world we live in just tear one another down..

  19. You posted facts? Seemed like inept opinions to me.

    My response was not typical or ignorant, but I think yours was. You said that you would hand your Black Card in if what you called “ignorant sambos” start referring to Tom Sizemore as Black. Tom Sizemore has a Black mother, so that makes part of him Black too. I guess I am the “ignorant sambo” and now you have to hand in your Black Card. I was simply responding to your words. Not all of them, but the ones I felt I should respond to.

    My response was short because I don’t have anything to say to you that hasn’t already been made clear in this three part series or in my past comments to others. Do you feel better after having called me an ignorant sambo and attempting to “read” me? Why do you feel the need to get hostile? The spirit your response was given in was negative, so I chose not to partake in your nonsense. Sorry I didn’t let your antagonistic words affect me. I just don’t feel that you understand my words so your response made no sense in regards to what I have stated.

    Also, this series was written four years ago so I have exhausted my POV with people like you on this several times. I’m spent. You happen to be another person that does not at all get what I am saying and you’re choosing to focus on the light skin/dark skin issue, which is colorism, and that is indeed the problem I am pointing out. I am in no way playing into the one drop rule as I have also stated several times. Your interpretation of what I am saying is way off. It’s weird how some people get what I am saying and others, like you, don’t. Perhaps that is why I get flippant. I am starting to think it’s a competency problem of some sort. What I am talking about are people with a Black/African American parent and a White parent, like my daughter. That’s not one drop. I am aware of how ridiculous the One Drop rule is overall. It’s ignorance put into law at its finest –

    If after reading this series you think I am promoting White superiority, I don’t know what more to say to you because the exact opposite is true. You missed the point. The overall message I am spreading is that we need to embrace all parts of ourselves. If you have a problem with that, it’s your problem. I urge you to read the entire series again without a chip on your shoulder or disdain for my very being. It may come across differently the second time around. Have a good weekend.

  20. I agree with you 100% Pammy. Sites like this conritbute to the demise of PRIDE in our race! Just know sista that not all of us believe in this white supremacy BS. And alot of blacks do not understand how this propaganda promotes it. And thanks for that link. Wentworth’s dad is white. Why is he one dropping himself and his white ass?

  21. The typical ignorant response from a black person when facts are posed to them. You only respond intelligently to other “one droppers” on this site that stroke your ego. I noticed whenever someone criticizes you with logic you get all flippant. Whatever sista! Keep promoting that WHITE superiority myth of hypodescence. Hope that is working our for ya!

  22. As a black woman, I have to say that I am tired of this “dumping ground” mentality when it comes to our race. Can we pleeeaassse move past the one dropping? Wentworth Miller is yet another tragic victim of it, just like Mariah Carey who is, at best 1/4 black. Why do blacks conveniently forget that she 1/4 Venezulan and 1/2 Irish. She could very easily be considered a White Latina like Sophia Vergara as opposed to “black”. Even she admitted that whenever she tours outside of the US she is regarded as white. Back to Wentworth, this delusional man listed about 12 ethnicities he is comprised of, most of them NOT black and yet he calls his father black. Here is a pic of him with his oh so very BLACK father at the end. WHAT?????
    Seriously? And his mother is white. His parents would not even look like an interracial couple. We are killing ourselves and our race by claiming mostly white people as black. Do you not realize these “black” people that “look” white ARE mostly WHITE or at least something other than black? You cannot compare these multiethnic white looking people to say a true biracial like Halle Berry who actually could never present or be accepted as white.
    I have so many issues with some of this I do not know where to begin. You referred to Mariah and Jennifer Beals in an earllier argument as “light skinned’ blacks. Really? How offensive a statement. I have light skinned relatives. A fairer skinned black is just someone with a COMPLETE African phenotype with lighter skin. To me, Queen Latifah would be light compared to Wesley Snipes. Tisha Campbell would be considered “light.” A person that looks almost (if not all) European in phenotype is not a light skinned black. That is as arrogrant and racist a propogrande as the Aryan belief of pure Anglo blood.
    And to top it off, we continue to perpetuate the idea that “black” women can look like Mariah or Jennifer Beals, or Gabrielle Reece (who looks so totally white its comical) and black magazines promote them as black. Then we wonder why “real” black women with “real” AFRICAN phenotypes are bleaching their skin and using products like Whiteniciios. One poor, deluded girl referred to her skin as “dirt colored”. We promote an impossible standard, colorism and then hate on the girls that deny or dislike their “blackness”. WOW! My daughters and I are dark with nappy hair and look like true African/black women. When my daughter asks me why she does not look like these “white” blacks I tell her very simply, because you my dear, unlike them are NOT mostly white. You are a beauiftul black girl. Love yourself and don’t get posioned by this European standard of beauty that we have so enthusiastically allowed into our own culture and communities. Again, these people are multiracial whites. Until America stops seeing any amount of black blood as “soiling” the white race, this insanity will continue. And we continue far more than most whites do. In fact, most whites I know go by phenotype nowadays. We, for some reason, love to embrace any white looking folks as our “own.” Can’t people claim black ancestry without being claimed entirely? Why does the black always negate the white to black folks. Are we that arrogant or insecure? Its either one of the other. Saying someone is black but looks white is like saying they are tall but look short. And don’t get me started on Tom Sizemore, if some ignorant sambos start calling him black, I am handing in my black card. Peace out.

  23. Blackness may be considered culturally by some, but not by me. Blackness, in my opinion, should be based only on ethnicity. I am a Black woman. I am not Asian or Indian (cultures). Anything not based on ethnicity makes no sense to me at all. Also, Mariah is not a natural blonde, she just looks great as a blonde.

  24. I am a black man and I have travelled the world and found that the one thing unusual about America is that the definition of “blackness” here hold not actual basis in reality or phentotype at all. Itsvery confusing. Because of the American “One drop rule” black will often see anyone with a slightly “off white feature” as black. I have seen people that look almost completely caucasian claim to be “black” and I think the one think you and Li need to understand is that it confuses alot of people not familiar with American culture. In almost any other country in the world if you look even remotely white you are NOT considered black, not even if you are 1/2 black. In America, blackness is a cultural and not even based at all on racial features. Case in point, Mariah Carey has natural blond hair, fair skin and looks like alot of Mediterranean and European women I have seen in my travels. She really does not look much different phenotypicaly than say a woman like Sophia Loren (ethnic white) but in this country, she passes as black. America is one of the only countrys I have ever been in where “blackness” is purely cultural and really has no basis in genetic makeup and appearance. Its like Li said, white features can still equal “FEELING” black lol.

  25. I think the point is never judge a book it’s cover or color! What I see is that many people are responding negatively to the use of Black to describe people of color who have light /white skin and features. When often times that is how they describe themselves for what ever reason. Categories are just not that simple anymore. If you care to notice everyone is becoming more multiethnic so the children produced from those union can’t always be categorized so easily. The only thing that has changed is how we as individuals categorize ourselves,Though we may looked mixed race, my daughter appearing more White then mixed she has all self identified Black parents and grand parents naturally she see’s herself as African American because that is her culture that features most prominently in her life regardless of how she looks.

  26. If people take the time to read beyond the title all can be understood quite clearly. Also, I’m not sure why it’s so important that it be stated that they are more White, but that’s your thing.

  27. Dangerous, I am happy to see you admit that these people are both. It seemed to me that you were classifying these people as black solely and I think that is why you keep getting the inflammatory comments because these people are not “black” they are mixed. That was all I was trying to get at is that they are JUST as much white (if not more in some cases) than black so they are not “black” people that “look” white.

    As for Li, I don’t think your rant needs a reply. If you have an “Asian/Indian” phenotype and your daughter has a “Caucasian” phenotype, why are you trying so hard to be black? That is just as “bad”: as the people you criticize for wanting to be “white.”

  28. No prob Dangerous!!! I have much love for you! Based on many of the comments, I gather that there are a lot of people who are dealing with very real issues of identity and are seeking answers. I just feel that it is important work you are doing as a mother, equipping your child with knowledge of self, so that when they are an adult they will never have to seek validation from the outside world about who they are .

  29. Thanks, Li! I really appreciate you being here to help me along this journey. I always look forward to your comments and point of view. Much love to you!!!!

  30. Dangerous you are doing an excellent job. Your series make perfect sense to me! It has been a catalyst for a much needed discussion on race and culture. This shit isn’t for the faint of heart. You are tapping into new thoughts that some people could never conceive of. Blasphemy they say, how dare you !!! Challenge the notion of Whiteness or Blackness. When you dare to think differently you know your living dangerously!!! Keep up the good work sis!

  31. I have to respond, I refuse to allow the negative experiences of a few people burden and stereotype the entire Black culture. I refuse to allow those negative energies to be put into the universe unchallenged. I don’t understand the mindset that would somehow BLAME the entire black “race” as being somehow responsible for holding anyone back from being anything, It reminds me of the movie “Imitation of Life”, it’s a sorry state to be in when you are someone who desperately seeks inclusivity within any group, and a sorrier state to think that if not for those meddling ni**as you could’ve gotten away with it! Clearly this article strikes a chord with people personally wrestling with a racial identity. If you are someone who is seeking to solidify a White or Black identify this article is clearly not for you. I find it thoroughly disgusting that anyone could ever be offended by someone identifying them as Black,. What’s so damn offensive about it!!! When I found this article I was seeking info that affirmed my thoughts about my own thoughts as a Black women with a Black mama and daddy but , I have more of an Indian Asian phonotype and for my child who has me as her Black mama and a Black daddy that has more of a Caucasian phenotype. This is CLEARLY not a Black or White issue , roots go deeper than what the eyes can see. It is those roots that nurture who we will become. Not our damn skin color! As Black as I am people still ask me if I am Black. As White as my daughter is people ask if she is White. People are aware of racial differences in general, but are even less aware that the difference within a race is more extreme then from race to race, because we as a nation have been racially segregated for most of our lives, that shit didn’t start with Black people. Anyone inquiring is mostly seeking a connection with you because they do recognize some similarities or is truly unaware and is seeking knowledge about you. We are seeking to educate people , making them more aware of how WE PERSONALLY identify this shit ain’t about you! This isn’t a personal attack on how YOU identify ! It is confirmation for anyone who has a phenotype that doesn’t always match their family of origin. It’s for a parent who is trying to raise a child with a strong sense of self period. It is not the antidote for racial ignorance in the world is just one a piece of the puzzle .Anyone that has such as fragile sense of self that one person can make you question your own identify, then you need to stop self medicating and finding your cure on the internet and seek out professional help. I know the name of a good therapist if you all need one.

  32. If someone is mixed with Black and White, they are Black…as well as White. I stand by that comment and see no issues with it. Thanks for reading and replying.

  33. Hi Dangerous,

    Let me start by sayng that I enjoyed your article and also looked at most of the comments on here. While quite a few people were in agreement and could relate, I also noticed alot of hostility and backlash in regards to the title of the article and the implication. As a black woman that grew up in the South (and I am an older woman), I wanted to shed some light on my experiences as well as some recent things that happened to me.

    I am an unmistable black woman, not light skinned, no ethnic ambiguity, I am black, proud and would never be confused for anything else. My mother and grandmother were strict one droppers. There attitude was any amount of black and you were black. I remember there were a couple of families that lived near me that looked completely white to me, althought a couple of the relatives could have been mixed or passed as Latinos up North. My mother used to strictly adhere that these people were indeed black. They did not mix much with us dark folk, and I never understood how the blond curly haired white skinned little girl that was almost my age could be “black” It made no sense to me even as a child. But then I was taught the black ways of the one drop rule and while I mentally rebeled against it (How does looking white = black like me?) I accepted it as law. Keep in mind, for a nappy haired dark girl like myself, I was even a little envious that this little “black” girl could look so white. But my mother used to make disparaging remarks about this family and how white folks were “fooled” by them because they “looked” white and my little black head went a spinning.

    Anyway, flash forward years later. I moved up north and was working at a law firm. I met another woman, quite a bit younger than me. Although at first glance she could be white, there was something about her. The broadness of her nose the ever so slight wave to her hair. I started more and more to assume she was black. We spoke on friendly terms for months without me saying a word about race or ethinicity but I just assumed she was a sister (based on my southern teachings that any hint of black or non white made you black). One day, there was a black magazine left in the waiting area. The only other black person there was a black guy that worked in the mailroom. I brought it back to our area and assumed it was my friends. She looked at me appalled and asked why I thought it was hers. I said to her very innocently, “Well, we are the only black folks here and it isnt mine). I think if she could have killed me she would. She proceeded to tell me that she was white. She was part Arabic but white nonetheless. From that day forward, our friendship was pretty much over. I walked away from that incident hurt and stunned because I thought SHE was the one that was racist.

    More recently, I made the same innocent, all inclusive “we are black” comments to two more people who CLEARLY were mixed (one girl was practically the spitting image of Alicia Keys). I was promptly correct and in these instances, told by both people that they were “mixed” not black and that they were just as WHITE as they were black. Again, I walked away surprised and insulted but it got me thinking…

    Why are we blacks always so quick to look for the “other” in people. When I tihink back about my co-worker, true, she was not “lily” white, but why did I jump to the conclusion she was black when she clearly looked more caucasian than Negro? Was it because I was the only balck person on the floor and she was the closest thing I could cling to? Why did I want these other two “mixed” people to say they were black? What about their white heritage? And how does this affect our perception of ourselves. I have a black friend who said something recently to me that really opened up my eyes. If white people were the ones that oppressed us (and still do) why do we cling and hold their features in our community with such esteem (light or almost white looking girls with straighter hair and light eyes seen as a prize). I know you may think that my rant has nothing to do with your article but it does. When I see what two of the young women below wrote about identity in other countries, it made me realize how wrong my mother and grandmother were. Why did we hate the people that did not look like us that could pass? They barely had any black ancestry. You made mention in one comment that if you are mixed with white and black, you are black. Too many blacks still feel this way (yes, alot of us are now rejecting it but not enough of us). The reponse I got to the two mixed people I met made me realize we cling to this notion still way more than alot of white people who have seemed to move past it. I at one time would have seen Wentworth, Mariah, etc as light skinned blacks in the south. Now I realize how ridiculous that notion is. They are still white with black ancestry. Blacks can’t accept that but its true. I bet if they did DNA tests, even the “black” parent they have was one dropped into blackness.

  34. You all are totally missing the point of this series. And, I really don’t know how you can come away with any negativity if you read carefully and with an open mind, but I’ll break it down for you. I am basically saying that a person with light skin or a person that appears only White can indeed have a Black parent. It’s as simple as that. It seems as though you all want to negate Black heritage altogether. Mixed people are not just one thing. They are both Black and White or whatever else a person happens to be mixed with i.e. Hispanic and Asian or Native American and Black. I don’t care what country you live in or what notions or beliefs they follow regarding race and heritage. Facts are facts!

  35. Latin America is not alone in rejecting the historical US notion that any visible African ancestry is enough to make one black:

    “In most countries of the Caribbean, Colin Powell would be described as a Creole, reflecting his mixed heritage. In Belize, he might further be described as a ‘High Creole’, because of his extremely light complexion, not black.”[16]

    These examples show that the perception of race is relative to different societies and individuals.

    During this period, Puerto Rico had laws such as the Regla del Sacar or Gracias al Sacar, by which a person of black ancestry could be considered legally white so long as the individual could prove that at least one person per generation in the last four generations had also been legally white. Thus persons of black ancestry with known white lineage were classified as white, the opposite of the “one-drop rule” in the United States!!!!! I’ll stop now.

  36. Amen to Regina, Sean and Sonara. NONE of the people above are black. I grew up in Brazil and the opposite is true there. Americans want people not quite white to be black. In Brazil and most other Latin American countries, if you are not quite black, you are WHITE! Read this below from an interviiew:

    “According to Jose Neinstein, a native white Brazilian and executive director of the Brazilian-American Cultural Institute in Washington, in the United States, “If you are not quite white, then you are black.” However, in Brazil, “If you are not quite black, then you are white.” Neinstein recalls talking with a man of Sidney Poitier’s complexion when in Brazil: “We were discussing ethnicity, and I asked him, ‘What do you think about this from your perspective as a black man?’ He turned his head to me angrily and said, ‘I’m not black,’ … It simply paralyzed me. I couldn’t ask another question.”[15]

    The Washington Post story described a Brazilian-born woman who for 30 years before immigrating to the United States considered herself a morena. Her skin had a caramel color that is roughly equated with whiteness in Brazil and some other Latin American countries.”

    “I didn’t realize I was black until I came here,” she explained. “‘Where are you from?’ they ask me. I say I’m from Brazil. They say, ‘No, you are from Africa.’ They make me feel like I am denying who I am and it angered me.”

    American blacks need to understand that this idea that mixed race people who look white that are black is strange and also insulting to the rest of our heritage. It would never fly in Brazil where all of these people would DEFINITELY perceived as white. In Europe as well. Interesting article but strange to alot of us. American history is full of so much misinformation and confusion!

  37. Dangerous, I do not have a chip on my shoulder at all. I read the entire series. Are you familiar with the followng term: I copied and pasted it from Wikipedia.

    In societies that regard some races of people as dominant or superior and others as subordinate or inferior, hypodescent is the automatic assignment of children of a mixed union or mating between members of different socioeconomic groups or ethnic groups to the subordinate group.[1] The opposite practice is hyperdescent, in which children are assigned to the race that is considered dominant or superior.

    In America, this is the practice, assigning anyone with black blood, (in Louisiana it was as little as 1/32 at one point which is INSANE, as black). People that were of mostly European ancestry were seen as LIGHT SKINNED or HIGH YELLOW (a derogatory term that was actually at one time used for people that looked mostly European though now is commonly used by American blacks for a lighter toned black person like Beyonce or Tisha Campbell. Point being is that Americans have beeb brainwashed since slavery to believe blacks are inferior so, therefore, if you have a black parent and a white parent you have to be black because you could never DARE to be white because blacks are inferior! This is a racist, ignorant and self deprecating ideology alot of blacks hold on to and those that are intelligent not to (ie Morgan Freeman referring to Obama as not a “black” man but a “Mixed” man). Why are black so afraid of allowing mixed people to shake the black label? Do they feel somehow disavowed when we that are mixed are NOT black?

    You have to understand that other parts of the world not affected by Jim Crow laws and slavery see American blacks and what is perceived as black as very strange to comprehend. Take the actress Billie Kingston. Don’t know if you are familar with her but she is a white woman from England who plaed Eric LaSalles love interest oin ER. She did an interview saying she could not believe there were blacks that perceived her as black or mixed. She is very white. She found the American culture and American blacks baffling. Its strange to hear blacks ask if people like Elizabeth Berkley, Miinnie Driver, Andie McDowell, Justin Timberlake, Leah Remini, Melissa Gorga, and countless other white people are black? I have done studies on this and its amazing how some American blacks can say that someone who looks 90% European could be black. Do you not see how that bastardizes and degrades your race? If more black people understoon the hypodescent theory, you would spit on it and disown it and stop calling white looking people “black.”

  38. If you found this series confusing or insulting, you did not comprehend what you read. Read it again…slowly and without a chip on your shoulder.

  39. Oh, and to Heavy Rules, I could not agree with you more. To say a white looking black person is lilke saying DOWN is UP. Rubbish! How brainwashed Amerrican blacks are!

  40. I found this article a bit confusing and also somewhat insulting. To refer to people that are mixed or biracial as “black” is insulting to the white parent no? I find the American notion of “black” very pompous on the part of black people. Black does not “trump” white especially in a person that looks more caucasian.

    I am from England and biracial. I am very proud of both of my races AND parents. In England, no one would dare call me black. I am mixed. And I do not say that with any offense to black people, its just that in every part of the world EXCEPT America, biracial and multiracial people are NOT black and we vehemently express (much to the distatse of American blacks) because we refuse NOT to acknowedge our white ancestry. I was raised like an English girl, I have a British accent and my white parent had just as much as influence on me and my culture as did my black parent. I look more white than black and attribute this more to the fact that I am probably more than 1/2 white but thats another topic altogether.

    In Europe, Asia, etc, people like me are not see as Black. We were not influenced by slavery and the one drop ruile which really IS why to call these biracial people black when they are not.

    And to Li, if a white looking person wants to be considered multiracial it is NOT insulting. It is more insulting and arrogant to expect that person to accept a black label when it does NOT define them and excludes half if not more than half of their parentage and heritage. These people are PART black. Only in America…

  41. Sean tell me something why would you want to make all Black folks White???? What would be redeeming about that brother???

  42. Just to be clear the “multiethnic white” movement is racist and degrading… The whole railing against those Black “one dropper’s” is just a divisive tool used to separate people of the same origins . Seeking social acceptance based on your skin color is as twisted as denying acceptance of social acceptance based on skin color, It’s profitless!!!!. Blacks don’t hold anyone back from social acceptance, but reeking self hate and a lack of power and wealth may. When you learn to feel good in your own skin and you wont have to worry about the skin I am in. Blacks have a history in this culture of being subjugating and defined by and against White standards . Why would anyone be incensed by the notion that yes you can be of mostly of the Black culture and ethnic origins but have white skin and blonde hair? Is it because it fly’s in the face of your long held beliefs about race in this country. Have you been mis-educated??? No one “race” culture or ethnicity has a monopoly on skin color, eye color, hair color, nose shape or any other feature. All people of African origins ain’t black colored and all people of European origins ain’t white colored. Common since should tell you that. Yet there is a culture among us that still insists on dictating to Blacks who they are not and conveniently who they are and that is what pisses me off. You cant dictate to me who I am you don’t know my family and that’s the point if you KNEW us you’d clearly see that it is possible. I was raised with so many multi-ethnic people that I would never conclude anything based on skin color. To truly get a lesson on race you have to live it, expand and be open to new information which many people unfortunately are not prepared to do.

  43. I don’t know if some of you people were raised in internment camps or what!!! But I was raised in a multi-ethnic “mixed” (how I hate that word) environment all my life… You can NOT look at anyone to determine their ethnic or cultural background, based upon something as mundane as dark vs light skin color half the time people are not even the same color from day to day let alone from race to race. If your definition of a black human being is so narrow that you conclude that there is a Wesley Snipes Black and a Whoopie Goldberg Black , then you are “mixed” up…

  44. Sonara…Mariah Carey was quoted as saying that “I’m mixed. That’s what it is,” in an interview with Vibe magazine in 1998. “I’m not in denial of either of them [her parents]. But anybody who’s mixed knows they’re of the black race. Not me that is why it’s in “QOUTES”….. I am with Dangerous you all need to read the series there is not one thing that she speaks of that should incense anyone. You choose your offense if you are offended by someone calling you black that’s your problem not my mine ….I am black and proud

  45. And for Li, you are wrong. People that are mixed do not “know they are of the black race.” How insulting to their white heritage. I happen to read ALOT of blogs and I have found that more than blacks than not disagree with you. Here is one of MANY sites I have found that completely spits on the “one drop rule.” Do your homework!

    That was at “Li” Dangerous, not you. Sean, you might appreciate this too. And for the record, Halle Berry is an idiot. Her daughter is not “black.” She is 1/4 black. If I was Halle’s mom I would disown her.

  46. There is no such thing as a white looking black person. If he is white looking then he is white just like the black people in the US and a lot of other countries; did you know that more than 95% of african americans have white genes and the average of white genesin african amnericans is 18%? So if u call african americans black because they look black then you should call the white looking people with a far black ancestor white because they look white. So either you call both groups (african americans and white people with a little black) mixed or if you want to call the first black , you call the second white, this is like 1+1=2.

  47. Sonara, I’ve said it so many times that I am tired of saying it. Read some of my recent comments for clarity. I thought I made it quite clear how I feel in this 3 part series, but it’s apparently being overlooked.

  48. Hi all. I came across this website after doing alot of reserach because I am fascinated by race. I also am a HUGE fan of the blog The “Multiracial White Person.” If you are not familiar with it, its very interesting. Its a blog and a new “movement” so to speak that helps people that are mixed (to some degree) and I will explain why.

    My situation is not unusual. I have black ancestry. I’m not half black but I am also not one to hide my ancestry although I look white. I always wanted to find a place where I felt comfortable being able to proudly declare my “African lineage” without having to be one dropped into being black because that label does not fit me. In school, I was called a “cracker, honky, etc.” by the black girls. When I went to a predominatly white high school, it was the white girls and boys that accepted me and the white boys that dated me. However, as an adult, when I meet a black person and I tell them by grandmother was dark and that my great grandmother could pass for black, they start with the whole “oh wow, you’re black. You are so light!” And this is not ALL black people, actually only a few, but its a mentality I do not understand. Its almost like saying “Hey, you LOOK white, but you can’t LIVE as white if you have black blood cause thats not allowed.” Really? That is when I tell them I am a multiracial white person. I look white, am treated as white (I have NEVER experienced racial prejudice from a white person) and honestly, I am not ashamed to say I feel more comfortable in white society. Does this mean by you and Li’s standards I am “passing?” I totally get what Sean is saying. Blacks are mixed heavily with white but always feel they have to only identify with the side that has been traditionall looked down as “lesser” than. I have told my white friends that I have black lineage and none of them seemed to care. They still see me as white. Blacks like to make mixed people believe they would never be accepted by white society, but I find that most whites (maybe perhaps with the exception of militant white supremamcists) have moved past the one drop and forcing mixed people to identify with black when its not an label they feel fits them. Thats the way I look at alot of biracial people that look more white. They are NOT light skinned. They are multiracial whites. Some blacks are very one sided in the way they look at mixed people.

    And again, I am sorry, but when you look at any “black” person with white traits, they are mixed heavilly with white. For a long time Vanessa Williams only claimed being African American. She recently did a very public DNA test and discovered she is either half or more than hald white (British Isles, Finnish, etc). Yeah, no DUH, like we did not know she was probably more white than black. There not a non mixed black allive that would come out looking like her with some cream. A true black woman is one that looks like Whoopi Goldberg. I hope with the advancements of DNA tests that alot of blacks wake up to the fact that not only are most blacks not pure black (statistics show the AVERAGE black person is at least 15-20% white) but that the people you call “light” probably have alot more white than that and yet many black criticize them for feeling more comfortable in that part of their idenity when alot of whites welcome them without issue.

    Thank you Sean for being one of the black people that is so open about this. I thank God that I know alot of you and the others seem to now be in the minority :)

  49. Ok ladies, you’re preposterous notions are because blacks sooooo desperately want to claim that they can NATURALLY have desired European traits went it AIN’T natural for us. Not so! ANY black person with fairer skin is fairer because there was cream added to the mix. Again, you look at blacks in Africa that have been untouched by whites and they are blue/black. And I mean BLACK! Not “light” like Ice T who admits having Creole blood and we all know Creoles are mixed with alot of European.

    And for the record, if you guys can say that a WHITE looking person is black, then I say lets make Wesley Snipes and honorary white guy. Makes the same kind of sense no? LMAO! If t here is no such thing as race as you claim I say hell, lets make him and all black folks white!

  50. Sean where do you live? where are you from? what does your family look like and are there anymore of your kind left??? You are an endangered species, I am sure there is a list where you can sign up so a group of local Klansmen can breed your asses in small batches.

  51. All light skinned people do not have a non Black parent, so there is indeed a such thing as a light skinned Black person. They can be seen everywhere. They’re not like Bigfoot. Also, there are Black people with natural blonde hair. Google it!

  52. First of all Li, “Yellow” or “High Yellow” are insulting racist terms we use to describe “blacks” ogf mainly white lineage and its derogatory and incorrect. Technically, there IS no such thing as a light skinned black person. We just accept that notion because we lump mixed people in with “black.” One of the most brilliant things I heard out of a black woman’s mouth recently was when she said the black race has become nothing but a dumping ground for ANYONE with black blood. Ridiculous! Yeah, a black person with natural blond curly hair. Serious?

  53. What I will never stand for is anyone dumping their own personal insecurities, prejudices, hate and self loathing on the entire Black race. We are a culture of individuals and when anyone of any color perpetuates stereotypes based on their limited experiences , lies and ignorance prevails. Natasha you don’t speak for “black women” Sean you don’t speak for “black men” you speak from your own experiences. In your attempt to be transparent you show just how shallow YOU are. You are not shining a light on the ignorance of ” we as a people” you reveal your own shortcomings . Own that! We don’t all think alike nor should we, we don’t have the same “Black experience”. Race is as much a social construct as is class. We experience ourselves through our family of origin first, then through the world at large. Believe me based on personal experiences people know what side of the dividing line in such as divisive prejudiced society, that they fall. Individuals orient themselves accordingly it is neither forced or coerced its. No child comes into this world color conscious its how they experience it as children that influence how they will interact with the world as adults. I have been in a culturally and ethnically diverse environment all my life. I focus on what unifies and not divides us as human beings. What unifies us are shared cultures, religions, familia background and EXPERENCES….I could care less about what color you are or what your features are your life is made up of EXPERIENCES… My child EXPERIENCED race when we are out in public and someone White complimented her on her beautiful ” blonde” hair, and treated her favorably because of her looks. She EXPERIENCED race when she was bullied by a Mexican child who called her a mutt. She EXPEREINCED race when she over heard her Black friend say she just looks like a White girl and her friends mom told her “she ain’t White she just yellow”, or when she was called White as a slander by her bi-racial cousins, none of these RACISM’S I would choose for her to EXPERIENCE.. As a responsible adult it is my job to educate her to help her navigate through such experiences. I let her know that she is not alone, and I show her examples of successful people who look just like her, She is not unique in her experience it is happening more and more because of people like Natasha and Sean who stereotype their own people, who do not understand that it is not the color of their skin or the color of their hair but it is how you respond to it that shapes that individuals experience.

  54. Sean and Natasha – Are you really gonna use the entertainment business to back up your opinions? Hollywood in general is notorious for perpetrating racist bullshit…as you have explained, so Hollywood is part of the problem. Regarding Mariah playing a slave; it’s a reflection of reality. All “house niggers” weren’t light skinned and all “field niggers” were not dark skinned. Check history. And, anyone who thought Pink or Justin Timberlake was Black/Mixed is just plain stupid and that conversation is also beside the point of this series.

    I am aware that my daughter is mixed and so is she. I’m not quite sure why you felt the need to inform me of that since I am the one who gave birth to her :/ If she appeared more White than Black it would not be OK for her to deny her Black heritage. When you deny who or what you are you’re saying that being Black is something to be ashamed of. I’m not saying that mixed people should only identify as Black. Did you read the series or are you just making assumptions based on other experiences you’ve had on this topic? Also, I agree that someone who is 1/4 Black should not have to identify as Black, but the question is…does she keep that fact a secret? I am not talking about a one drop rule. I am talking about people with a Black parent and a White parent. I get so tired of saying the same shit over and over to people who are on their high horse and leave long winded ranting comments without reading the entire series and understanding where I am coming from.

    One of the main points I am making is that you can be very light skinned and have a Black parent. That’s it! I’m not saying anything other than that at the end of the day. Too many people, like you, see a person that you think is only White and say they aren’t Black or they aren’t mixed because they look white. That’s nonsense and it’s rooted in colorism and internalized racism.

    People that are mixed Black/White are not forced or shamed to identify as Black. How can they be forced or shamed to identify as what they are? White blood doesn’t make you not Black, just like Black blood doesn’t make you not White. This so called reverse one drop rule in Brazil, Europe, and South America is just as ignorant as the one drop rule in America that you’re so against! Racism and colorism exists all over the world. How is it ever OK to deny or ignore your heritage? All this Black and White racial bullshit is silly when you break it down, which is what I am attempting to show in this three part series. You’re just two more people that unfortunately don’t get it.

  55. Wow Natasha, your comments were dead on. Especially about the music business. I’ve always been shocked how many blacks eat that shit up with a spoon. I have always felt that whites expolit us because they know we still believe in this rascist nonsense. What you said about Pink and Justin cracked me up. I knew they were white passing for black and didn’t believe the hype. I agree with all yout points sister and that was kind of what I was getting at! You need a blog. I am tired of the “just black” stuff myself. Too many of us have that attitude and I see it applied alot with mixed people. Its self deprecating and too many of us won’t admit it. And I agree about Mariah. Playing a slave? She IS trying to hard. If she was really black she wouldn’t be stressin’ ;-)

  56. Ok, Ima about to jump in on this.

    Li and Dangerous. Do you not, as black people, realize that the reason WHY people that are part black or mixed identify with being black is because they are FORCED to do so? Sorry, but we SHAME people into only embracing their blackness once we discover the black blood. Thats the way black folks are. We hijack. I read a Facebook post recently where a friend of mine told a mixed girl that she “Was and always will be, ONLY black.” ONLY black? Do we not hear how we perceive OURSELVES????? Funny, but most whites I know nowawdays dont give two shits if someone is mixed. I have a girlfriend that is 1/4 black dating a rich white guy. I asked her once if his family knew she was 1/4 black (she looks white) She said to me, and I quote “Honestly, only you guys are still hung up on that one drop shit” and she laughed. Truth be told, with the exception of probably white supremacists, WE are the ones that are still hung up on colorism. Whites nowaways seem to be very accepting of multiracial whites and Hispanic whites (both of who are known to be mixed). Our race has been so bastardized by slavery that we have it so twisted! I read on here how a woman says her child looks NORDIC but is BLACK???? Sister, I AM black. I’m as black looking as Spike Lee’s sister. JIGABOO black and proud of it. I always have been! Not all of us are in the camp of thinking WHITE looking people should be considered black. They may be mixed or biracial but not black. They have African blood but are not BLACK.

    And Mariah Carey is full of it. I went to school with Italian girls that looked less white than her and they were accepted as white. Please. Mariah could easily be of Mediterranean descent. She is trying WAY to hard to pass for black. What is she trying to prove? Talk about passing! Playing a field negro with her blond hair and white ass? And y’all ok with this insulting shit? We should boycotting that movie!

    Let me tell you ladies a funny story, and this is true and I could have him come to this site to prove it to y’all. I have a friend that works for a popular record label. He actually TOLD me alot of WHITE singers were marketed as black or black looking early in their career to gain a white following (ie Pink who alot of ignorant blacks thought was a “light skinned sister” when she is actually GERMAN all day!) Justin Timberlake with his corn rows (Blacks thought his white ass was black or biracial) My firiend is BLACK and he told me its because whites KNOW blacks are color struck and still believe in the one drop rule. He TOLD me this! Its why women like Elizabeth Berkely (JEWISH\/WHITE) Angelina Jolie (WHITE, despite what blacks claim) and that white chick from Slow Burn can play black or biracial in Hollywood. WE are losing roles to white women because Hollywood looks at our dumb asses like we are accepting of it and we are! We don’t even get real black or biracial women to play US. We are one dropping our asses out of existence. These people on this thread are not of our race! Stop promoting this ish. I love my people but stories like this really get me up in arms. Do you know in other parts of the world the one drop rule works in REVERSE? White blood makes you NOT black. Got to South America or Brazil or Europe. The rest of the world is not insane. Can you not see these people are clearly more European. Probably at least 80-90% and I have to read people on here a few people saying anyone with black blood “knows’ they are black? Why do we still look at being white as a priviledge and something white looking people are not entitled to? When we start looking at ourselves with the beauty and pride we deserve, we will stop using terms like she is “ONLY or JUST black.” I hear these words used in my community WAY to often. All I can say is WOW to that. And Dangerous, your beautiful daughter is MIXED. I can’t wait til we come to a day and age where mixed people CAN JUST say they are mixed or even White if they look it without being forced to have a black idenity they may or may not relate to. And Dangerous, as the mother of a mixed child, if she had come out looking white, why couldn’t she consider herself a multiracial white person if that is what she looked like or identified with? With so many people mixing nowawdays, we need NEW classifications for white looking people with mixed blood cause BLACK aint cutting it. I still can’t get over Li saying her kid looks NORDIC but is black? Really? Really? Leave us with our own idenity and stop stealing even THAT away from us. White people are laughing at our expense and making us look like desperate fools.

    Peace sisters.

  57. Thanks for reading and leaving such an in dept comment. Someone that is 1/4 Black that doesn’t identify as Black is understandable. I see no issue with that. All the people mentioned in this series are people that, though they may appear otherwise to some, do identify as Black in one way or another, and rightfully so because they have a parent that is Black. My point is that there should be no issue with that. Also, if you deny your Black heritage to fit in or to have an easier life you’re indeed passing. Regardless of the racism we may face, when we deny our heritage we are contributing to the issue of self hate and racism. Also, I am very aware that as Black Americans we have mixed heritage, I believe I said that, but being Black or African American is not just about the color of our skin. When Black and White people alike understand that we will be better off as human beings because once again race is a made up social construct, it’s not real. Ethnicity is real.

  58. Hi Dangerous,

    Interesting post. Ironically I was looking for something completely different when this showed up in my search. As a black man I found this site interesting and also wanted to make some input on the topic.

    Our black history in America is an unusual one. As we sit here talking about mixed people, we need to remember that we, as black americans, are heavily mixed! The reason I say this is because I have a friend who was born in Nigeria, and he is always perplexed by the appearance of alot of American “Blacks” whom he considers mixed. I remember one time going to Louisiana and meeting people there who were classified as black who looked almost entirely European to me. Some identify as black but many don’t and reject the identity that blacks gave them. I read your response to Joann about her half Irish friend and it made me think about the issue of passing. I have a distant cousin who I was told for years that “passed” and went on to live her life as white woman. A few people from that part of my family did. In all honestly, when I saw pictures of them, they looked nothing like me. They looked white. When you think about the oppression that blacks have faced, as well as the hatred in this country, I find myself understanding why people did it. Especially if they COULD. To this day, I even see alot of celebrities (i.e. Rihanna) who looks black but feels a need to reject that identity because there has always been a stigma attached to being black. More so than any other race or culture. I love being a black man, but I have to be honest, I take issue with blacks who feel the need to find the “other” in people who do not acceot a black identity (Yes, I have friends that do this all the time and even try to see the “black” in white celebrities) and I take issue with blacks who get angry for white looking people that “pass.” In fact, if you read what Joann wrote, she said that the Irish people KNEW her girlfriend was half black but they did not care that she identifed with being white. Personally, I think that a white person that is mixed should be able to call themselved a mixed race or multiracial white person rather than a black person. Someone like Wentworth to me is a mixed race white person, I just can’t call him a brother. Its not colorism and its not racist. If he wanted to hang with me and be very accepting of his black heritage I think thats great, but he still is a white person in appearance regardless. He is not a light skinned black man. Ice T is a llight skinned black man (Black phenotype with fair skin). Tisha Campbell is a light skinned black woman (light skin, black phenotype) not Mariah Carey. She looks white all day.

    I don’t mean any disrespct by saying this, but I think the reason why blacks don’t like when people “pass” is because its like a “get out of jail” free card. I think subconsciously, or maybe even consciously, there is alot of self hatred and insecurity in the black community and we get angry at those people who do not look like us (even if they have some of our blood) who can live in the more “priviledged” world. I saw it with my own sister and I had to school her about it. She had a girlfriend (Kayla) who was 1/4 black. You would never really know it. She had curly blond hair and green eyes and I GUESS if you were looking for it, you could see a little something extra but most people didn’t see it. They grew up together as friends but as they got older, Kayla started getting hit on by white guys and was able to go into neighborhoods by sister couldn’t (this was the 80s, I grew up in NY which believe it or not, was pretty segregated at the time. Especially Italian neighborhoods). My sister started to hate Kayla and accused of her passing. I tried to explain to my sister that they looked nothing alike and Kayla’s life experiences would never be the same as hers. My sister had Hispanic friends that lived their lives mostly as white and she did not have a problem with this but she did wth Kayla which made no sense to me. Kayla went on to marry a white guy and had kids as white as snow. I don’t blame her. Its where she felt comfortable and my sister finally came to terms with that.

    I guess what I am trying to say is, I wish as black people we would get to a point where we understood that not everyone wants (or needs to accept) a black idenity. I think when we have found more security and self love as a people, we won’t care if people with black blood don’t live their lives as such. I saw the seething anger in my sister and I knew that to some degree it was envy. She saw Kayla get treated in ways my sister never would. I am not saying its right, but I think we want non black looking people with black blood to claim it because we look at it as a denial because of how WE have been treated and looked at and its really not fair to them. Morgan Freeman caused alot of flack in the black comunity by saying Obama was not the first black president and he is actually right. Obamas mother is a white woman. He may look mainly black, but he is half white. He’s mixed. For someone like Kayla to have lived her life as a black woman really made no sense to me and, in the end, my sister finally agreed as well. I read a comment from a black person once who said that in our race we have people from the color of “snow to crow.” Really???? No, a person the color of snow is not part of my race. They may share some of my blood, but they are not part of the black race. Being black is something to be proud of, but we are not showing pride when we are STILL using the term “passing” for people that look mainly white. I agree with Joann when she said if these people stayed in the black race they would be passing for black!

  59. I forgot to add that it was Mariah Carey that was quoted as saying , “I’m mixed. That’s what it is,” in an interview with Vibe magazine in 1998. “I’m not in denial of either of them [her parents]. But anybody who’s mixed knows they’re of the black race..

  60. One thing I would like to add is that Wentworth, Jennifers Beals and Mariah Carey ,self identify as black or bi-iracial, I have never heard them say that they are multiracial white. In fact all these celebrities who all have one black and one white parent looked of African-American decent before their celebrity status and identify themselves as being of African decent. Jennifer Beals starred in Showtime Network’s The L Word, where she played Bette Porter, an Ivy League-educated lesbian. At Beals’ request, Bette was made biracial……. In an article I found on another site she was quoted as saying, “I’m mixed. That’s what it is,” in an interview with Vibe magazine in 1998. “I’m not in denial of either of them [her parents]. But anybody who’s mixed knows they’re of the black race.”Carey rehashed a painful memory during a news conference for the film “The Butler” at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York on Monday. Carey recalled being spat on by a white person when she was younger. Reflecting on a scene in the movie that’s meant to replicate the Woolworth’s Lunch Counter sit-in, in which a black college student is spat on by a white woman, Carey admitted, “That actually happened to me.”“I know people would be in shock and not really want to believe or accept that, but it did,” she stated. “And it happened to be a bus as well. It was a school bus … In the face and in the same way.”Mariah Carey plays a field slave in The Butler, Wentworth Miller was quoted saying ” ‘To be perfectly clear, passing’ —- that is, trying to pass oneself off as white…‘is something that has never crossed my mind’…” (New Yorker magazine, Nov 10th, 2003)…..Its not institutionalized racism from blacks that these people have chosen to identify as non-white. It has been through their own experiences that they have embraced identifying and presenting themselves as black or of African-decent. I applaud them, In a society where people still believe sadly “Its insulting to the rest of their heritage, especially if they clearly look more European.” as quoted by one of your readers…. These celebrities embrace their blackness and illustrate to American this is who we are and this is how ” I” identify MYSELF !!! Deal with it!!!

    Read more:

  61. I understand that opinions and experiences of this vary widely across the world, but if your friend is half Irish and have Black…she’s mixed. If she denies her Black heritage she is passing.

  62. That leads me to ask a question, do you think it would be ok if that same person DID identify with being white? The only reason why I ask is because when I consider the situation of my girlfriend, whites never took issue with her favoring her white side but blacks also felt she was ashamed and “passing.” See, I think if someone looks white but lives their life as black, they are “passing” for black, not the other way around. Just wondering what you thought about it in reverse?

  63. Thanks for your comment and understanding. However, I am not saying that mixed people should only identify with one part of their heritage. I am saying there’s nothing wrong with someone that has a Black parent and a White parent who appears more White, identifying as Black. There’s nothing wrong with that. There is something wrong with people who think that person should only identify as White. Identify as you like, but never deny who or what you are. That’s the problem….denial.

  64. Interesting site. Dangerous, I KIND of get what you are trying to get across but I can see why so many people find this confusing. I am of European descent mostly. I do have distant African lineage (from pictures I have seen my great great grandmother looked black). Most people that meet me see a Caucasian person though I will OCCASSIONALLY meet someone (usually of color) who says I look mixed with a little something – LOL. I will admit I identlfy with being white.

    That being said, I think what some of the people were trying to get across is that alot of the people you mentioned as being black have a white Phenotype. A phenotype is the composite of the traits that make up the race you mostly resemble. When I took a race and ethnicity class, our teacher divided us into groups. I was in the white group. He told each of us afterwards that REGARDLESS of what our bloodlines were, only going by sight, these were the RACES we belonged to. Both teachers said if you have 75% (3/4) of a race’s traits you were of that race. Striaght hair, fair skin, light or green eyes, fine features, you were white. Kinkier hair, dark skin and eyes, afro features, you were black. The point I am trying to make is that because of one dropping in this county (and only in this country), alot of black eroneously consider people with white PHENOTYPES to be black. Black people were first named as such BECAUSE of the color of their skin. Now, in the US, being black takes on more of a cultural meaning than a racial one. Its the same reason why a woman looking like Mariah Carey can be acceoted as black in America but would be looked at as white in most other countries. She, Wentworth, Jennifers Beals are all people with WHITE phentoypes (straight hair, fair skin, European features) but with African ancestry, They are not black people that look white. Same goes for ALOT of Creoles who are erronesously called black or light skinned blacks. They are people with African ancestry and many have alot more European blood than black. I have a girlfriend who is half Irish and half black and she looks more white and identified almost solely with the Irish side and even lived in Ireland for a long time. The Irish people there were fine with her identfying as an Irish girl because her mother was Irish. You would have though they would have took issue with her being half black but they were way more accepting of her white comfort level than people are in the US. She does not like American blacks for that reason. They only want her to see herself as black so she prefers Europe.

    I do get what you are saying though, you can’t judge a book by its cover, but I think blacks need to move past claiming mixed people as black. Its insulting to the rest of their heritage, especially if they clearly look more European.

  65. You are very welcome. I have always found human history and genetics interesting. On a side note, I haven’t met one little old Asian lady yet that didn’t come up to me and say, “You’re part Chinese, aren’t you?” So, do Asians point to celebs and “claim” them for their own “race”? No. But they do come up to average every day people and will call you out on it if you are part Asian. It’s not a bad thing, either. A lot of them will then tell me that they have grandkids who are only part Asian. It’s their way of making a connection to others. People will always want to relate to others, no matter how big the gap seemingly is.

  66. Hi, first of all, I would like to say that I am not black; nor do I consider myself as anything but American. The stigma against those of who are biracial is nothing new. My grandmother was born in Shanghai to a Cantonese mother and an American father. In China, she was accepted. She even told us about these famous twin sisters who were half black and half Chinese; apparently, they were the toast of Shanghai- mind you I am going back a- ways, to the ’20’s to early 30’s. But once in America (they had to escape due to the Japanese invasion) my grandmother took a lot of bull. So much so that she lied to her two daughters, pretty much owning up to only being an 1/8th Chinese. It wasn’t until my mom was in her thirties, married, and a mom herself, and saw her mother’s parents’ wedding picture that she called my grandmother and said, “Mom, you’re half- Chinese, aren’t you?” to which my grandmother finally admitted.
    Apart from my own mixed heritage, and to those who have claimed that more mixing of European blood will naturally produce white looking babies, may I direct everyone’s attention to a very true story about a South African woman named Sandra Laing? They made three different movies about her because her story is so unique. She was born to two white parents, had four white grandparents, and yet was born with “questionable” skin tone. Her parents hoped that as their daughter grew older, her skin tone would lighten. It didn’t. The very opposite happened. Her skin became darker, her hair coiled tighter, and as a result, she was shunned in the all white girls school her parents had sent her to. You have to read about this woman and all that she went through. In South Africa, to this day, they have racial problems. It isn’t just unique to America. In China, they have this half black and half Chinese girl that’s taking sooo much crap (pardon my language) because, in most Chinese eyes, this girl is Black. Yet, she grew up in Shanghai, only speaks Cantonese, and considers herself Chinese. Also, there is this word, I feel, that people need to know about: Atavism. Just because you’re only, say, an 1/8th African- American, doesn’t mean you can’t have a child who will turn out looking Less white than you and your husband (this is, assuming, of course, that you married a white guy). Genetics is a crapshoot (once again, pardon my language). There is really no way to tell how your children are going to come out looking, or who they will resemble the most. I have a cousin who is only an 1/8th Chinese, but she looks like she’s 100% percent Chinese. Again, this is called Atavism, or you could say that she is atavistic, in other words, a throw back to her Chinese ancestry. This can and does happen all the time. Obviously, it happened to Sandra Laing. Some white predecessor of hers most likely got it on with a black African, otherwise- obviously- Sandra Laing wouldn’t have been born with atavistic African features. My apologies about the long- winded post. I just wanted to clear up some things that some people had said here. Personally, I don’t think skin tone should be an issue these days. Most especially in the Western Hemisphere. Unfortunately, we still live in an imperfect world where ignorance, as well as racism, prejudice, etc., is still alive and well. Disclaimer: Atavism may not seem as much of a common happenstance because you could look at a person and judge them by the shape of their eyes, or the color of skin, or even by their hair type or by the size of their nose (Oh, s/he must be Jewish or Italian ‘cuz look at that honker!), and make an “educated” guess as to what race, ethnicity, cultural background from whence they came. I could not even tell you how common or rare atavism is. I am not a geneticist.

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  68. Another thing that I wish these people to know is blacks are not as confused about race because we see and live in two worlds white and black and frequently go in and out of both social circles easily, Those who keep eluding to “the problem with blacks” argument preference their thoughts with racial overtones, so I dismiss them because of ignorance. They can not possible provide an objective view point on the subject! But keep up the good work and yes speaking the truth, is dangerous.but knowledge is power!

  69. hey sista Danger ! Once again I see there are people who are not Black or do not identify with this position because the have NO experience with it personally. As you know I am African American with a daughter who looks more white than African American and her father is African American as well. What these people fail to realize is that black or being African American is part of our culture. Somehow these people’s education have failed them otherwise they would be aware of white colonialism and white supremacy that dominates and twists the concepts of color and race. I hate to brake it to you people but yes we are black in thought, culture, family,and color and we come in every color under the sun !!!! NO ONE IN BLACK FAMILIES ARE ONE COLOR. When someone black is trying to educate you about their race stop trying to contradict them. The problem with these people dangerous is that they truly do think blacks are ignorant even of their own race. It shows you just how insidious racism is. They really believe that race is some distinguishable little black box for black people when you tell these people that in our culture that is not so, they are up in arms. I see it every day in the whites of their eyes when they look at my little girl who looks more Nordic then a lot of so called white people.It confuses them to see with their own eyes blacks of varying skin tones in one family and that is the truth Dangerous. I believe it makes them insecure that we can’t be easily identified as black or white. Which speaks to their ideals about their own white privileged They don’t understand it so instead of possibly seeking knowledge they make uneducated guesses. Then they assume. Dear confused faces of America yes their is a vast black population of blacks that have white skin and look just like you that identify as black not only in culture but because most of their family is black not 1/2 not 1/3 but most. And if you are wise enough to ask you would know that. So stop assuming it’s so black or white when the answer is more complex than that.. Instead of picking up a book engage these real live people and learn our personal HIS or HER -STORY’S you would be surprise to learn the truth about race….Stop learning and rehashing the lies people.

  70. Gemma, I think you need to read the section on Wentworth again. I simply stated that he has a parent with Black heritage and I referred to him as a person of color…that is what he is. Wentworth himself has stated that he is not White. Someone who has Black, Syrian, Jamaican, Jewish, Lebanese and Cherokee heritage is not White!

    Just because you have Black friends that don’t “subscribe” to the notion of white looking blacks doesn’t mean they are smarter than every other Black person or that they are right. That is their opinion, which I’m sure is rooted in colorism and internalized racism. Also, I am not referring to a one drop rule here. My article is referring to people that are half Black and half White. I mention Wentworth because I knew he had Black heritage when I first laid eyes on him. Most people only seen him as White and yes he could pass as White but he doesn’t because he’s not.

    The point is that we judge based on color and that is what you and your friends are doing. The whitest looking person can be part Black. News Flash:There are White looking Black people walking this earth! Meaning there are people with a Black parent and a White parent who look more like the White parent. Why does that bother you? Also, just because you “bet” Mariah and Jennifer are mostly White means nothing. Do you know their parental heritage?

    You’ve come here to comment on my article with all these pre-conceived notions and superior attitude as someone who I assume is not of color, so in that sense you have no real life understanding of the topic…other than your “Black friends”, and you seem not to be open to learning or understanding what is really being said. You have anger in your tone as well. Why? Calm down. There really is nothing to argue or debate about here.

    The major reason I wrote this article is because I am a Black woman raising a “biracial” child so I have some real world experience and I know what I am talking about. Don’t come here stating that I am ignorant because you don’t understand. That means you’re ignorant to the topic at hand and you need to educate yourself.

  71. I don’t think all blacks are ignorant. Not at all. I have alot of black friends that do not subscribe to the nonsense of “white looking blacks.” But I do think the ones that “one drop” people are. Look at Wentworth. You listed his ethniciteis as “African-American, Jamaican, English, German, Jewish, and Cherokee background, and his mother is of Russian, French, Dutch, Lebanese, and Syrian ancestry”. You mentioned his black part FIRST ironically. What about the English, German, Jewish, Cherokee, Russian, French, Dutch, Lebanese, etc. This is why this site is inane. He is NOT a black person that looks white, He is MOSTLY white. 9 out of the 11 ethnicties you listed are NOT African American. DUH! Black might trump white when its a full half, but not when its diluted by mostly white. Here is the problem with American culture. Someone who identidies as black, who is not even black, will marry a white person and then blacks consider the kids black or biracial. For example, Soledad Obrien and Paula Patton both married white men and had WHITE children but both of those women are barely black themselves, and yet blacks STILL try to say the children are black or biracial. Bullshit.

    I bet most of the “white looking black people” (i.e. Mariah, Jennifer Beals etc are MOSTLY white and not even truly biracial. Wentworth is probably at best 1/8 black. I have nothing against you personally, and I do understand that you are trying to say that even the whitest looking person can be PART black. But Ignorance is not understanding that MOSTLY European genes will create a WHITE person. .

  72. Gemma, you are obviously yet another person that hasn’t read the entire series or if you did, you do not get the point I am making at all. And, I must say that your comment that black are ignorant makes you the ignorant one.

  73. Portu and Ovu are correct!!!! I don’t understand why blacks think white looking people should identify as black. I am a white looking Hispanic with distant black heritage (great grandmother looked sort of black). I have straight hair, green eyes, fair skin and a slightly broad nose. For this one trait, I occasionally get a black person who will ask me if I am mixed or identify with being black. Serious???? Uh, NO! Its a VERY tiny percentage. Maybe 5 people in the thousands I have met but it is ASSININE nonetheless. Its this one drop mentality that makes blacks say people like Mariah Carey and Jennifer Beals are black. HELLO! They are mixed or Mixed whites. People are getting tired of the black one drop mentality and are fighting back. You have no right to tell people they are black and what they should idenifty with. Do you think Wentworth or Jennifer Beals would be treated as black anywhere in the world? I have no idea what its like to be black. I have never been treated as anything but white by whites. The funny thing is, with the exception of the handful of crazy blacks I have met that saw something “other” in me (although I had no idea only blacks had a claim to certain features), even most BLACKS treat me as a white person. Most, if not all of the racial prejudice I endured as a child was at the hand of black girls who called me “whitey” and a “cracker” growing up. The confusion, hypocrisy and division within your own race astonishes me. If someone looks white, they are not black. They can be MIXED but there is no such thing as a “black person that looks white.” And you wonder why people think blacks are ignorant. DUH. I know alot of mixed race people and they hate that blacks try to claim them. We don’t live in that world anymore and more people want to identify with their European ancestry as well. I know a black girl that is half Irish and she feels way more of a kinship to that side of herself than the black side and only blacks give her a hard time with it. Get over yourselves!

  74. Portu, what the hell are you talking about? They’re NOT just White. Also when was the last time you spoke to Wentworth? Do you know him? How would you know how he feels? He has publicly said that he’s not White. Why do you have an issue with people identifying with all parts of themselves?

    I’ve read your post over and over and nothing you said makes sense and I wonder if you really took the time to read and understand the entire series because you sound like a damn fool. Take your own advice and do some extensive reading and research. Also, there’s no need to feel sorry for me because I have great pride in who I am. I feel sorry for your silly ass!

    Lastly, I actually don’t know what African tribe I hail from and that’s quite common for Black people in America. I plan to have my genealogy done at some point when I can afford it. I’m not quite sure why that’s funny to you, but it’s apparent that you’re an asshole so I guess the enslavement and rape of a people is a joke to you. Good luck on your search for “coloured people from South Africa” :/

  75. All them are white, deal with it. “When Black and White come together it creates something beautiful” according to you It calls black kids, so what’s the point? Marriage with a black guy and have black kids who really look like black kids isn’t enough? Let me guess, blacks do not look good, right? how low certain people can go. Wentworth looks more caucasian than most syrians, if you ask to him he will say he doesn’t feel black at all, he’s always playing white guys, just like Vin Diesel. Following your HURT pride, the concept of Arabic, Latin (American and European) and North African doesn’t really exist. If you are really interested about ethnicity go to the library and get some books about history and haplogroups. I was just seaching about coloured people from South Africa and fell into this failed article. I feel sorry for you, be proud of your race and your ancient tribe (probably you have no ideia who they are lol).

  76. Terrific work! This is the type of info that should be shared around the net. Shame on the search engines for not positioning this post higher! Come on over and visit my website . Thanks =)

  77. I’ll keep it simple. Wentworth Miller is not Black. Halle Berry is not Black. Jennifer Beals is not Black. Anybody of black plus another ‘race’ parentage is not Black; s/he is mixed race. Americans need to let go of the evil one-drop rule, and accept the fact that mixed race people are just not Black.

  78. Color shouldn’t matter, but it does to many. Also, you don’t “get it” because you’re White…with brown skin. Thanks for reading!

  79. Why is this even an issue at ALL?..

    Skin color shouldn’t matter anymore in 2013? What am I missing?

    I am white, but kinda brownish… No one gives a f**k about it, though.
    And why would they?
    I am who I am because of my spirit, not my skin.

    And to be honest, I tend to like black people (not really too many where I live), especially some chicks, lol

    Here, I SAID it, ha, ha, ha…
    What gives?

    Steve ✉ Master eMailSmith ✉ Lorenzo # Chief Editor #
    eMail Tips Daily Newsletter ✉

  80. I’ve decided that unless people have something educational, sincere, and noteworthy to add to the discussion that I am no longer allowing all comments. I am so tired of debating this topic negatively. If you read all three parts of this series and cannot or will not understand the valid points I am making…read it over and over again until you get it. Thanks!

  81. Honestly Dangerous when I see such disdain and ignorance for African-American culture or “black people” coming from people who share in the legacy of that culture or have no objective experience with our culture. I can only assume that those individual’s experiences were colored by a very tiny world view . I don’t care how traveled they are.They have absorbed all their information through faded lenses of color.They are unable to comprehend life beyond the color line. They are not capable of even processing in their narrow minds that “black” is a color NOT AN ETHNICITY OR CULTURE .And we African-Americans were once “labeled” and still identify as “BLACK” in-spite of the fact that it has been historically used AS A SLANDER AGAINST OUR CULTURAL AND ETHNICITY and we are ok with that because we know the truth. It is obvious to anyone with eyes or a true concept of self that we are not black in color nor by definition. Have you witnessed anyone debating or giving up “whiteness” to “EVOLVE”???? BEING LABELED “WHITE” IS CONSIDERED BY SOME AMERICANS TO EQUAL PRIVILEGE IT IS DEFINED BY WESTERNERS AS POSITIVE. TO BE BLACK IS MEANT TO BE PERCEIVED AS A SLIGHT AND NEGATIVE BY WESTERN SOCIETY OF COURSE THE “RACE’ DEBATE WILL PERSIST. BECAUSE PEOPLE ARE SO IDENTIFIED WITH THE WESTERN DEFINITION OF BEING “WHITE” NO MATTER HOW INACCURATE. SO THEY FALSELY BELIEVE THAT EVERYONE IS JUST AS DELUDED AS THEY ARE. FOR THE WHITE AND BLACK DEBATE TO BE MAINTAINED THERE HAS TO BE A COUNTER ARGUMENT. ONE BEING THAT WHITE IS GOOD AND BLACK IS BAD. ……I feel sorry for these people who grew up with all this “black and white” thinking. I grew up with so much diversity it never occurred to me that so many people can be confused on what “black” is not, yet be so grossly obsessed with white is and colluded with it. But so detached from blackness like a plague. I wish they could articulate what ‘white culture looks likes? illustrate it, just try to quantify it and describe it in a color story. Relay the intricacies of whiteness and try to leave out culture so that it colors the whole race from one vantage point then go out and try to convince other white folks just how “IMPURE”they really are.That they need to abandon the notion of “whiteness” cause after all racially you call yourselves white but technically you are pink which is a more accurate assessment of your physical traits and who doesn’t like pink???All little girls love pink RIGHT????!!!!!!!!! Let’s just see how many WHITE people give up their WHITE PRIVILEGE so they can be depicted” historically” more accurately LIKE “REAL EUROPEANS” YET PEOPLE LIKE THIS BELIEVE THAT “BLACKS” MORE SPECIFICALLY AFRICAN AMERICANS CAN BE OBJECTIFIED IN THIS WAY. There are connotations associated with being “white” ones that the vast majority of white people believe has advantages, conversely some people believe there are disadvantages to being perceived as “BLACK”…IT IS THAT PERCEPTION THAT IS OUT-MOLDED NOT THE ETHNIC IDENTITY OF THE PEOPLE. They can run that BS on someone who feels inferior about their own ethnic origins. To believe that is to really believe that being black is intrinsically inferior in some way , when it is the concept of what black (race) IS that is structured on inferiority. I don’t have a complex about being perceived black cause I know the truth about my ethnicity. BUT IT IS MY PERSPECTIVE THAT SOME PEOPLE DO.Somehow they believe that everyone shares in the same delusions about race and are confused about ethnicity as they are. They believe that when faced with a choice “BLACKS” would disassociate from their family of origin because they themselves have bought into the lie of ” WHAT BLACK IS” When you attempt to educate THESE PEOPLE THEY ARE SO IDENTIFIED WITH THE LIE ABOUT PEOPLE OF AFRICAN ORIGINS, THEY CAN’T EVEN PERCEIVE ANOTHER REALITY. THEY HAVE NO CONCEPT OF SELF THAT IS STRONG ENOUGH TO CHALLENGE SUCH INACCURACIES. Please checkout the this is the African American experience that I know .One I relate to that is part of my Black History. They have put together a beautiful project that profiles our “BLACK” experience accurately and eloquently without trying to conform it to a deformed westernized definition of blackness, it’s all inclusive and an expanded version of the face of blackness that I see everyday.

  82. “Eventually more blacks will looks at this as a more enlightened way of viewing people like myself, Wentworth, Jennifer Beals, etc. and not force them into a category that does not rightfully fit their appearance. Its lie the old saying about America. A white woman can give birth to a black baby, but a black woman cannot give birth to a white baby. Not so. In the old days, I would be considered a quadroon. But I would this we have evolved past such a close minded mentality. Even in Europe (where I spent at least half of the year) they look at someone as myself as a white person with African blood. Not a “black” person. That would be insane!” ……EVOLVED LOL…WE EVOLVED FROM “MIXED” UNIONS SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THE AMERICAS WE DON’T QUANTIFY OURSELVES BY ANYONE’S STANDARDS BUT OUR OWN. I COULD CARELESS HOW A WHITE PERSON VIEWS ME. IT IS HOW I VIEW MYSELF THAT IMPACTS ME MOST. NOBODY HAS TO VALIDATE ME FOR ME TO KNOW WHO THE HELL I AM .

  83. Wow….Victoria because you have no experience with, African American’s who are white in complexion but African -American in ethnicity doesn’t mean they don’t exist it just means your are limited to what you know and have experienced. We are African American in culture and association. I grew up absorbed in both African American culture and in “white” culture. I grew up in a diverse environment with Hispanic ,whites, Asian,and everything in-between, I identify with every racial group I have been exposed to.I can see myself.But the household I grew up in had traditions that shaped who I am and helped define and have contextualize my experiences. The ethnicity of those people who made up that household were African- American. I have my influences which are diverse like most people.But when I look at my family no matter the complexions they are African-American, We follow traditions that are unique to the African American experience just like we are equally absorbed in ” American” traditions. When I look at my parents irrespective of their different complexions they both grew up in the south with specific traditions that I embrace.I have no desire to place such value on those traditions that did not figure prominently in my household.. I’ll be damned if you can convince any other nationality that it’s ok to abandon their roots .Yet you dismiss African ancestry like its some random made up non-void ethnic group that gets to be subjected to the trivialities of color.Do you reaaaaaally believe that is how we are defined ????? Are you serious??? You do understand that African Americans don’t OWN the color black right. There are people who are outside of Africa that are BLUE BLACK who are not ethnically African. Won’t you learn something instead of being so dismissive about African American culture. You can be ethnically African American and WHITE AS SNOW,BLUE EYED WITH BLONDE HAIR NO ETHNICITY HAS A MONOPOLY ON COLOR!!!!!!! JUST LIKE YOU CAN HAVE RED HAIR AND NOT BE IRISH OKKKKKKKK!!!!! THAT IS PART OF THE LIE!!!! OKKKKKKK, Anytime you think that you can categorize people in groups you will always be proven wrong by the sheer existence of people of who challenge that notion. We are ethnically African American by virtue of being descended from Africa. You can be “raised white” and have chocolate babies all day long with your white man. It has nothing to do with what with you except how YOU PERSONALLY SELF IDENTIFY, genetically I am “multiracial” culturally I am African American , I can “choose” to identify with any ethnicity. What I choose is African American because that’s what I love . Nobody has to “force”us to be black. It is a shame how people think when given an opportunity to lose their black identity how readily they embrace “otherness” I embrace blackness with the face of otherness and and wouldn’t have it any other way.Like I said your ” black experience” is not mine.Don’t impose your BS on me

  84. Victoria, what is your father’s ethnicity? If he’s not Black then I understand why you don’t identify as Black. If my daughter, who is biracial, has a child with a White man…her children would be more White than Black. Again, you’re someone else that is missing the point and has not read past messages. Don’t be so quick to comment when you haven’t fully read or understood a certain point of view. Also, I don’t know why so many people feel the need to share that they have been to Africa and seen “real” Black people as if that changes any of the points that have been made. There are plenty of Black people in America that resemble those in Africa. Also, all light skinned Black people are not mixed. They may have some White or American Indian ancestry but one of their parents is not always biracial or White. No one is forcing Wentworth or Jennifer to identify with being Black. They are aware of who they are. Why is that such a threat or a problem? Again, for the hundredth time, this White Black nonsense was created to separate us. It works!

  85. And Li, there are no “white skinned” blacks. You sound ignorant saying that. That’s like saying up is down and down is up. There are white skinned MIXED people.

  86. Hello all. I read some of the posts on here and find myself most in agreement with Sheila, Carla and Ronald. First of all, in response to Li, there really is, in reality, a light skinned black person. It is an oxymoron. For a black person to have lighter skin this denotes they are mixed with another race or ethnicity. Both myself and my husband have (unlike most African Americans) BEEN to Africa on several missions from Ghana, to the Congo to Sierra Leone, and the people there black. Most black Americans are considered mixed by the standards of most African people.

    But I digress, my personal experience has been one that may seem unique, but I embody the very nature of a “multiracial” or “Mixed” white as Sheila so eloquently and INTELLIGENTLY put it. By AMERICAN standards, I am biracial. My mother (who, again, by American standards would be “black” is biracial). I stated that I was in fact biracial only to prove a point and that is that in America, black Americans see mixed people as “black.” Although my mother is biracial she looks very much like a Hispanic or even Mediterranean woman. Myself and my brother came out as white as they come. In fact, most people say I resemble the actress Kate Bosworth. I am not “close to white” or “Ambigously” white, I look about as white as a Midwest cheerleader. Natural blond hair, turned up nose, green eyes and porcelain skin. I says this because I was raised white. Although biracial, my mother married a Swedish man. My brother and I resemble him. We went to predominantly white schools, had white friends and lives our lives as white children. After college I met my husband, who is also Scandinavian and my children also have blonde hair, blue eyes and fair skin. I never deny my heritage and always tell people that I am, in fact a quarter black. But the problem with the way blacks view “blackness” is that it would be absurd for me, as a white person, to say I was black. That is how I feel about a lot of people mentioned on this thread. The “white looking black people” are actually white people with black ancestry. Eventually more blacks will looks at this as a more enlightened way of viewing people like myself, Wentworth, Jennifer Beals, etc. and not force them into a category that does not rightfully fit their appearance. Its lie the old saying about America. A white woman can give birth to a black baby, but a black woman cannot give birth to a white baby. Not so. In the old days, I would be considered a quadroon. But I would this we have evolved past such a close minded mentality. Even in Europe (where I spent at least half of the year) they look at someone as myself as a white person with African blood. Not a “black” person. That would be insane!

  87. It is truly sad that there are people out there who think that someone has to justify who they are for the purpose of making themselves feel better. What a sorry state of existence that must be. Being so effected by something you have no control over nor do they.God knew what he was doing when he created us. You can’t help God out by creating categories so that Shelia and Carla don’t get confused about who they are

  88. Unfortunately there are a very minuscule minority of African-American that uses the “one drop rule” as means of racism against other African-American’s who apparently have”white blood” that somehow makes them suspect so they gotta show their black card to affirm their blackness…..Yes indeed Sheila and Carla I know your type..Met ya’ll before . Using colorism and racist propaganda yet again to set yourselves apart and make distinctions from yourselves and others so that you can feel good about who you are. Ask yourselves what is it in you that that makes you feel uplifted by, oppressing or suppressing an iota of any ones being.What makes you get high on putting anyones self identity down.What would prompt you to call into question someone else’s SELF perceptions.What would motivate you to prejudice a child against anyone who is different from them based on skin color.Ya’ll sound like black supremacist.. Who gave ya’ll keys to the Kingdom?What makes you think you could even say BS and find someone ass backwards enough to co-sign for you?Who invested you with any authority to stand guard over “black people” I sure as hell didn’t elect you to speak for me. Ain’t nobody gotta prove to ya’ll how black they…lol..Your antagonistic points of view don’t change our reality cause we know who we are and will rear our kids in light and not darkness marred by an ugly self image. This isn’t a black or white issue, it has everything to do with how you feel about yourself and imposing your negative self beliefs on others. If ya’ll so proud to be black then don’t challenge anyone else’s pride in who they are. My shame isn’t rooted in color nor is my pride.It’s rooted in knowing and accepting all of who I am and not allowing anyone else perceptions about me to become a part of my self image. You don’t get to decide for us or anyone else outside of yo self what that image reflects. Worry about the woman in yo mirror that’s the only reflection you are responsible for.No one else’s . In the words of a real black southern gurl…. negro please…GET YOU LIFE…que the chuch organs!!!

  89. Thank you dangerous,for providing a forum for all of us to express our personal opinions even if they are a result of out molded and backwoods thinking…. I appreciate you!!!…I can not believe that in this day and age that there are still people in a civilized society that believe that African Americans have to quantify themselves because of someone else’s ignorance. Makes me wonder just how many Pam’s and Carla’s are out there still labeling and pigeon holding people based on their limited world view. I mean what’s understood doesn’t need to be explained. You don’t have to be the color black to be African-American where do you two live? What the hell have you been exposed to? My guess is that you two have been under exposed to diversity and you could use a good lesson on geography and culture. I can not understand your line of thinking it seems so small and restricted and yes sad….I shudder to think you really could express such backwoods thinking with such conviction.In what universe do African Americans who are light in complexion have to justify their heritage? I wish you would!!! The point is you don’t have a right to question anyone’s beingness. How does us being “black” make you so uncomfortable with yo “blackness”? You can’t reconfigure someone else’s heritage to fit your Utopian image of what black is. No wonder ya’ll so confused. Apparently you two don’t have the ability to accept your ” black experience”cause you are so quick to eclipse and negate someone else’s experiences. Your “powers” do not work here .They have no value….. .When was the last time that disposition added value to your experience? It doesn’t you two should be more invested in why it agitates ya’ll soooo much that there are white-skinned African Americans,rather then trying to convince yourselves that they don’t exist. Get to the roots of your own self hatred and increase your own self awareness so that you don’t have to go around attempting to decrease anyone else’s.

  90. Carla and Sheila – I’m tired of repeating myself and debating this with you, especially since you continue to insult my intelligence, so this is it.

    You keep throwing in the topic of the one drop rule and the thought that we think the way we do because we (Li & I) believe White blood improves us as a people when that is not what I think or have been discussing and it is not what this series is about. This series is about fighting against the very attitude that you are expressing. Again, we can agree to disagree because you’re obviously stuck in your backwards mindset and you’re not at all grasping the very important points that are being made. I could care less what they think in Africa, it’s beside the point and doesn’t change facts. You don’t think they suffer from issues with race and color in Africa???

    So what if you have African and Jamaican friends that have “biracial” children that are dark. They could of just as easily been born very light. That’s how genes work! It’s a crap-shoot! Based on your thinking if they had been born very light they would not be Black; that’s stupid! Being Black or of African heritage is not about how dark you are, it’s about parentage and DNA. I have a dark skinned cousin with a dark skinned husband, they have two boys, one is dark, one is light. I have a cousin who is a lighter shade of brown that is married to a woman with lighter skin than his and they have five children, some are darker than them and some are lighter. I have a good friend that is mixed (Black father (dark) & White mother) who is very light skinned. She had a child with a dark skinned Black man and her daughter is probably just a shade darker than her! Think Nick Cannon and Mariah Carey’s children. The father of her child also has another child with a White woman and that child’s skin tone and appearance is almost identical to that of her child. The fact that you continue to harp on color equals colorism. You need to recognize that and work on changing your thought process. You don’t get to define what is or is not Black based on color. That’s ignorance at its finest.

    You keep trying to hit these ridiculous points home with me and you’re not willing or progressive enough to see another point of view that quite frankly makes more sense and is rooted in fact based information. Also, you fail to see that these points you’re making are OPINIONS. That’s part of what makes it sad.

    You may be able to look at my daughter and see that she is Black (probably because you know I am her mother) but because she is mixed (Black & White) she is constantly asked, what are you? Are you Mexican? Are you Indian? Is THAT your mom? Very rarely do strangers look at her and recognize that she has Black heritage. Many peoples perception is clouded because as humans we put too much emphasis on color, but it’s not entirely their fault because they’ve been trained to think that way.

    Read my past comments and you might also want to read the entire series again to get a better understanding because you have totally missed the point. Thanks for the discussion and thanks for visiting The Dangerous Lee News & Entertainment Network.

  91. Thank you Carla! I could not agree more. We are going to keep one dropping ourselves out of existence. I am so sick of this ish among black people. If you don’t look black, you are not of the BLACK race. I am sick of seeing blacks fight among ourselves over this. You may identify with being black, but that IS a slave mentality that white looking people mixed people are “light skinned” blacks. Bullshit and bless you Carla for being intelligent enough to realize that. Lets elevate ourselves and be proud and stop thinking that the white blood somehow improves us. All it does is make us more insecure with ourselves. I am glad to see there are so many black people that feel the same way :)

  92. Dangerous its not sad. Why don’t blacks understand that the only reason why our race is so diluted is because of slavery? If you look at Asians, as a group, most of them share the same similar traits that MAKE them Asian. Even among whites, Italians/Greeks etc may be of a darker or swarthy appearance compared to say, a German white but they are all still white. George Clooney is an example of white man with a “darker” appearance than say Philip Seymour Hoffman but they are both WHITE (similar skin color, facial features, hair texture). The problem I have with blacks is that some us still follow the white mans dreaded one drop rule. The idea that Jennifer Beals is of the same race as Spike Lee or you or I is RIDICULOUS! We are messed up because of the white mans hatred of us and we still perpetuate it.

    Case in point, go to Ghana or any other place in Africa. If most blacks went there they would see what black is. The point I am making is most American blacks already have white blood in them and are not looked at as pure by Africans. So, in essence what makes it worse is that we classify biracial people that look white (who all intent and purposes have “black” parents with a lot of white in them) as BLACK!!!!!

    I have a friend who is African, truly African from Africa. She married a WHITE man, Swedish to be exact. Her child is still so black that he does not look biracial at all. She always jokes and says its because she has no white in her. I have another friend who is Jamaican (very dark) who had three children with a white man and ALL the kids look black, NOT biracrial. When you get “biracial” people that look white, I have to wonder how much “black” is really in them and yet black folks jump on the band wagon of hijacking them. Do we think it elevates US to have white looking people included in our race? Its absurd. Even mixed people in Africa are not considered black. I saw your pic Dangeous and you look like a black woman. Your child, to me, looks more black than white. I do not know, nor am I questioning your lineage, but a biracial person that comes our looking white probably has a hell of a lot more white blood in their veins than black. You know how retarded we sound saying a “white skinned child with green eyes and straight hair is black????? Even Africans would laugh in our faces. Its nuts.

  93. It’s sad to see that you think Black should be defined based on color or lack thereof. And, it’s also pretty sick that you think if someone has to ask if you’re Black that you’re not Black. You have a twisted way of thinking and are totally missing the point that Li is making. So sad…

  94. OMG! Thank you SheilaP! And thank you Ronald. Personally, if I have to deal with more Mariah looking chicks saying they are “black” I’ll scream. I am of the same ilk as Morgan Freeman who so wisely said America has yet to have a black president because he is half WHITE! He is right. It’s the same way Vanessa Williams never really represented black women as Miss America when she more resembles a tanned white woman. She finally, after years of saying she was just African Anerican finally admitted she had alot of Native American and Welsh blood. Duh! Of course she does! Wtf? Are we that dumb we just thought she was “black”. There is a whole county of white people in Polk County (and I mean straight up white, Google them) that identify with being African American because of slavery. Slavery messed us up as a race and as a group because we can’t even be united in who we are. If you look more white than black, you’re not passing, you’re white. Lets stop getting it twisted. And I agree that you can be biracial and Racially white. Wentworth Miller is racially white because he has the physical traits of a white person in the anthropological sense. He does not have the traits of a negroid. Neither do Mariah Carey, Jennifer Beals. Rashida Jones, the author Danzy (forgot her last name) etc. I would have no problem whatsoever if these people chose to live as white because to me, they are white. If they prefer their black side I’m ok with that but they are not black. Why we gotta get it twisted?

  95. And I don’t care if you “jump ship” Li. Stay where you are comfortable. I don’t care if you identify with being Asian. But if a white child has to ask why you or you child is black, you may want to reconsider what “race” you really are.

  96. Li, you can identify yourself how you like but I actually am friends with several Creole people that HATE being classified by blacks as “black.” I, and alot of blacks I know (just read alot of Internet forums and/or talk to alot of blacks) find it confusing and insulting that alot of white looking people identify as black and yes, it’s ONLY because of slavery and one dropping. Do you know how idiotic it sounds to say a “light skinned green eyes child ” is black. Please. This is what I have to explain to my truly black daughter. This child is mixed at best. Stop making mixed people classify as black.

  97. SheilaP you stated that “You can just as easily be WHITE and biracial as you can be BLACK and biracial. And the funny thing is, most whites I know agree with this. Only white supremacists and a lot of black people still hold onto this close minded view that black blood soils even the whitest looking person”…… Please replace your “we” with an”I” and make it personal.You in no way speak for “black people” You can only speak for yourself. If you count your self among those “lots- a -black people” who believe black blood “SOILS” even…the…WHITEST…looking person… are joking right!!!???!!! (language is so important) Then YOU should address that. But to make a blanket statement with a “contrary” opinion other than your own is really not helpful to a discussion about “race” and “stereotypes” …. But it is telling!!!! ……I do know that you can be of two nationalities based on my experience the people who I know who are multi-ethnic myself included, may acknowledge a multi-ethnic background but I was raised with one cultural influence that was more dominate.Though I may be more physically similar to someone of another culture other than African-American. African- American best describes who I am and my ethnicity.

  98. SheilaP truth is relative to the individual… I want to explain that I was speaking of my daughter who appears to be more European than African decent, her father and I are both African American and I have had to explain just as recently as this Friday during her school’s field trip, to her and another child who asked her “why is she white and I am black?” I simply stated ” We are African- American” … and that was enough for that green-eyed little light-skin “black” child … I have brown skin and I can remember answering very similar questions about my nationality early on in middle school and when the questions persisted I swear I didn’t recognize why the hell people didn’t know I was “black” African- American. I understood early on that African-American’s is and has always been a “mixed race”of people. Some look European-decent some look African-decent. I only need to look at my own family for evidence of that. What African American family do you know where everyone has the same complexions??? There are many nationalities who have two extremes in skin color who consider themselves of one heritage. It matters not what each individual members shades are they share a cultural heritage. I don’t know what your points of reference are but in my experience color has never dictated la familia. We are and have always lived and participated in African-American traditions which is diverse in of itself. Our family with creole influences from Louisiana may not have the same traditions as an African-American family from Cincinnati.There tends to be a misconception that black =African- American, based on a limited world view. That is a problem derived from social and economical issues, that have prevented African-American people in the past from recognizing how vast and far reaching African influence is. We are as culturally diverse within the African- American culture as we are outside of the culture and just because you may prefer black beans and white rice and I prefer red beans and yellow rice doesn’t make me any less African than you. Cultural variations can be based on geographical differences and so can complexions. It doesn’t exclude someone from a shared cultural identity just because your “black looks different then mine”. That is even more divisive. Tell me what would your black quotient be? How many Negros you got to put together to get a fully functional “black person”? ….. “ Multiracial white” and “mixed race whites,” As a black woman, I find this empowering”…… How does how anyone define themselves empower you SheilaP? How does reclassifying people into more manageable groups help to combat the social-economic issues of today? You stated ” The ONLY reason why we are supposedly “UNITED” as a race and a race that includes a lot of WHITE looking people is because we have allowed the “Master” to define us” …..I beg to differ with you on that SheilaP. African-Americans can not be “racially” segregated into one group no matter what the paternal or maternal ethnicity may be. We can’t be classified !!! Our ancestors were enslaved based on our shared lineage, when color could no longer differentiate “African” decedents from “American’s”. Though we don’t share the same color, we do share the same lineage and that is what unites us. There are no shackles that tethers me to my cultural heritage, I am honored to be born of such a legacy, so don’t count on me to jump ship.

  99. I don’t need to have more pride in who I am, so you cannot be taking about me and I sure as hell do not think with a slave mentality. Also, who is confusing race with ethnicity? Ethnicity is what Li and I are talking about. Being Black is about DNA/ethnicity, so I don’t follow your point. As I have said over and over and over….race is not real. It’s a made up social construct. Also, I am not demonizing Ronald, we just happen to have a difference of opinion and we’re having a debate. At the end of the day it seems that we all agree overall, but that we look at things a little differently. Who here has criticized Black women like Beyonce and Nicki Minaj for choosing hairstyles that are typical of White women? No one the last time I checked, so it’s irrelevant to the subject at hand and quite frankly a separate topic. I think you and Ronald are so hellbent on trying to school us that you’re missing our very valid points. Just because you and many other Blacks agree on a certain movement does not mean that it’s totally valid and that another point of view doesn’t also makes sense. I don’t necessarily have a problem with the the terms “multiracial white” or “mixed race whites”, but these terms would seem to apply to those who have Black heritage further down the line; not a person that has a Black parent. I don’t understand your logic that you can be White and be biracial, but again we can agree to disagree. That seems to be your view because you put a lot of weight on being Black with color, I don’t.

  100. Hi Dangerous,

    I commented on this post awhile back. I am still shocked by the comments I am seeing on here. Both you and Li are demonizing Ronald for speaking a truth ALOT of us blacks are now agreeing to. I had pointed out the new “movement” so to speak of the “Mutiracial white” and “mixed race whites,” As a black woman, I find this empowering.

    Li, I am addressing you specifically on this. You pointed out in one of your posts that you are more “European” in appearance but IDENTIFY with being black. That is fine. More power to you. But as BLACK “PHENOTYPED WOMAN” Yes, please lets not get this twisted and admit that there is a BLACK race and that is what I look like, I have noticed there is a lot of hypocrisy and insecurity among us.

    First off, lets get one thing straight. The ONLY reason why we are supposedly “UNITED” as a race and a race that includes a lot of WHITE looking people is because we have allowed the “Master” to define us. I am in now way a racist and have ALOT of white friends. But in the Jim Crow era. it was WHITES that hated blacks SO much that the literally sacrificed any WHITE looking people that had even the smallest amount of black blood. THAT is why a lot of WHITE people had to live as black and why the phrase “passing” for white came into play. Because people that looked mostly European COULD “pass” for white but were called out because of the hatred of black blood.

    The other thing I take issue with is that a lot of black will willingly accept WHITE looking people into the black race (Mariah Carey, Rashida Jones, Wentworth Miller, Jennifer Beals) and then we CRITICIZE blacks when they try to look more white. If I read one more article where blacks demonize Beyoncé or Nicki Minaj I’ll scream. We get all indignant when black women try to look more like these other SO CALLED black women that are WHITE in appearance. We are so twisted as a group its ridiculous.

    This is why I have began to explain to my dark skinner, AFRO featured daughter that women like the Mariahs of the world are NOT black, they are MULTRACIAL WHITES that identify more with the black culture. That is fine. But lets call it what it is.

    There is an actress named Rebecca Hall. She is 1/4 black and her mother looks biracial. Rebecca was asked once in an interview if she considered herself black to which she actually laughed and replied “You don’t get much whiter than me.” Interestingly, she was raised in England, NOT America. Paula Patton, case in point, is biracial (although she identifies as being black). She married a white man and has a son that is WHITE. Some blacks would still think he should identify as black????? And when I read about Tom Sizemore, I thought he was a perfect candidate for the “Multiracial white” The man is white. Period. I am talking about his racial features and Phenotype. He is white. Half black yes, should he acknowledge it, sure. But we get it all twisted when we confuse race with ethnicity. And only us blacks do it.

    I’m with you Ronald. We need to have more pride as people and stop letting the slave mentality rule us. You can just as easily be WHITE and biracial as you can be BLACK and biracial. And the funny thing is, most whites I know agree with this. Only white supremacists and a lot of black people still hold onto this close minded view that black blood soils even the whitest looking person.

  101. wow, there are definitely some interesting comments on this post. race really was created to divide us and people do judge too much based on skin color. race really cant be determined by skin color alone or looking at someone. most of the time people just ass-u-me. “and assuming just makes an a** out of you and me” as my mom would say. These are two interesting articles I think everyone here should read about race.

    many people really don’t know where race truly come from. i got asked many times if me and my sister had the same parents (shes light skinned and I’m dark skinned). many people didn’t believe we were sisters, didn’t believe our hair was ours and in middle school classmates wanted to know the skin color of my parents. its crazy. people are taught non sense things about race at a young age and usually it is completely wrong.

    people migrated from all over the world. for instance look at the american indians. they came from oriental people and when they came to north america they were isolated from the people from asia. they married in their family line/group and became their “own group” of people. native Americans are considered Mongoloid people but differ from the asian when they married with in their group. then some migrated into central and south america and became their own people there. so through migration and relocation is how people became separated and formed their own groups. this is basically true of all so called races.

    Dangerous lee i see the point you’re making, people do ask stupid questions when they see a biracial or light skinned person trying to guess what they are and many people are ignorant when it comes to the facts about race.

  102. Ronald this is another portion of that same excerpt….

    “It is hard to demonize or “other” black people, or label us with some genetic deficiency, if you acknowledge that we are connected to the majority–that we share the same blood. And so, black Americans are our country’s invisible multiracial people. If we truly aim to banish the “one drop rule” once and for all, we have to tackle it where it began. We can’t just start with today’s biracial and multiracial people–the Baracks, Tigers and Halles–we must finally acknowledge the true racial history of the people we call “black” today.”

  103. Ronald !
    Ironically you forgot this excerpt regarding the same article “Black Americans are multiracial

    The other thing that most discussions of racial identity fail to acknowledge is that, for the most part, to be “black” in America is to be multiracial. Articles like to proclaim the coming of a multiracial America as if it is not already here. Society is simply loathe to acknowledge that, due to this country’s slave-holding past and the intermixing of African, Native and other peoples, that our bloodlines have long been blended. As an amateur genealogist, I can tell you that, of all the gatherings of African American family historians I have attended, I have heard few family stories that did not include at the very least family members of both European and African extraction. And it seems the further back the tree goes the more the branches lead to places other than West Africa.There is currently an active DNA project for my father’s surname. The leader is collecting DNA results from males with my last name. One bit of family lore that the project hopes to confirm or put to rest is that my great-great-grandfather was not just his master’s slave, but also his son. Whether or not that connection exists, for six out of 16 other branches of my tree, the connection to a race other than African is confirmed. Culturally, I am most certainly black, but like most other African Americans, my genetic makeup tells a more complicated story. And I don’t think my story is exceptional “…….

  104. For sake of clarity in America, African Americans are categorized as “black” although we are a “mixed” culture of people, and have been for century’s. I don’t care what your skin color hair type or facial features are if you are African American genetically you are or will produce off spring that could fit the “racial” profile of any number of races. You can’t differentiate an African- American woman from a Bi-racial woman or a Tri-racial woman just by looking at them .It’s not that we don’t fit in a category it’s just the limited category just doesn’t fit or describe our people. It’s more of a way to classify something inanimate and does not apply to people. African American’s don’t go around proselytizing bi-racial people to be black or anyone else .It is not rooted in inferiority it is birthed from the truth of who we are, being African- American means we all have European linage as well. Using the word black to describe our culture is in a sense a misnomer. The characterizations of being black has always been meant to be disparaging until we as African -American’s embraced the word and assigned new meaning to it. It is not the fault of African-Americans that this word has be synonymous to describe us throughout history.Just because the word was meant to characterize us negatively doesn’t mean that African- Americans, can’t take the same word and expand it and change it’s meaning to something positive. I am just as proud to say I am black, because MAYBE I have A different interpretation of the same word which is indeed subjective and personal to the person using it and is based on their experience not being African American but being perceived as black and all it’s negative connotations as well as some positive. When was the last time you heard someone use white to describe anything negative?????…. I don’t encourage people to change being self-identified as black, when being called black is part of the cultural legacy of African Americans. I encourage more people to be ok with being perceived as black or of African decent In a culture that literally translates the word black as evil. We encourage people to embrace blackness because there is NOT ONE THING THAT PROVES THAT BECAUSE WE ARE CALLED “BLACK” WE HAVE INTERNALIZED THE NEGATIVE CONNOTATIONS OF THE WORD! AND JUST BE CAUSE PEOPLE USE THE WORD BLACK INTERCHANGEABLY TO DESCRIBE SOMETHING NEGATIVE WE HAVE NOT BOUGHT INTO THAT BELIEF HOW COULD WE???? WHEN YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE!!!! Even if BLACK doesn’t fit the totality of who you are you will discover being described as “white” does not increase you in any way unless you are identified with the meaning behind the word and the social implications of being WHITE. White doesn’t describe a cultural heritage. In American culture WHITE LIKE BLACK IS A COLOR TO A HUMAN BEING!!!! UNFORTUNATELY PEOPLE HAVE TRADITIONALLY USED THESE LABELS TO SEPARATE PEOPLE FOR A NUMBER OF REASONS.!!!! JUST BECAUSE WHITE IS CONSIDER PURE AND WONDERFUL DOESN’T MAKE IT TRUE EITHER. BLACK AND WHITE ARE ADJECTIVES. THAT SPEAK NOTHING OF THE ORIGINS OF A HUMANS BEING OTHER THAN HOW THEY ARE TO BE PERCEIVED. To have African lineage and to just identify with “white American culture” at the exclusion of African culture when so much of the culture is clearly biased against other cultures especially African American culture is just ridiculous and irresponsible, if not for any other reason that you could easily be an unwitting target. No one who holds themselves in high esteem would be accepting of that white or black . African American cultural influence though not pervasive is still relative to the “white experience” in America. They are intrinsically intertwined!

  105. Anyone with a Black parent that does not identify as Black is self hating and doing so because as the writer stated, “Even those of us who love and embrace our blackness know that black is the one thing few other people in America want to be”. Tiger embraces all parts of himself, including the Black part. Vin Diesel, from what I understand, does not embrace his Blackness and that’s a damn shame. People have the right to identify as they choose, but not accepting your heritage, especially when you have Black heritage, is cowardly and self hating.

  106. We don’t all look alike because many of us are mixed heavily with WHITE.

    Please take the time to read the link below. A lot of blacks are finally getting with the program of NOT calling biracials and mutilracials “BLACK.” I think both of you ladies will find this interesting and insightful and it was written by a black person. Our need to claim biracials and “blacks” mixed mostly with WHITE stems from our own insecurity in a world where we have let old racist oppressive rules dictate who we are.

    Here is an EXCELLENT excerpt:

    “The tragedy of feeling inferior

    I am Black and I agree completely with Jen Chau that all people, particularly people of mixed-race, should be free to identify however they choose. Folks who cannot accept this God-given right need to mature intellectually.

    Think about this, as the professor Takaki said, the one-drop-rule makes “VICTIMS” of people who DO NOT want to identify as Black. Conversely, the one-drop-rule “INSULTS” those of us who do identify PROUDLY as Black, like me. Why are we “forcing” people to identify as Black when they don’t want to? Let them go (bye, bye Tiger).

    The one-drop-rule is racist, antiquated, demeaning, and Black folks – in particular need to stop using it as a determinant for a person’s racial or cultural identity. It is long past the time that Black folks stop speaking the language of their oppressors.

    There exists in this country a bias against blackness. Just as a drop of black blood “poisons,” a drop of something other than black blood redeems. Notice how even the black community embraces physical markers of non-black blood. Many in the black community worship “good” hair, “light eyes” and “Indian in the family.” And why not? Society at large values these things; why should we be immune to their allure. For those who call ourselves “black,” sometimes it seems we are eager to be identified as anything but “just” black. It is ironic, then, that a culture that in many ways still subconsciously believes in the supremacy of whiteness, is eager to identify and call out anyone who DARES cross the imaginary line that separates worshipping nonblackness with rejecting blackness.

    That is how it goes, though. The black community can be prickly when one it embraces as its own chooses to be, say, “Cablanasian” rather than African American. Many discussions about the “one drop rule” and “who gets to call themselves what” wind up portraying black people as simply uncharitable, or worse, racists eager to force anyone with a whiff of Africanness into loudly rejecting all other aspects of their being to proclaim themselves “black.” The truth, I think, is more tragic. Black anger at the Tiger Woodses of the world comes from a nagging sense of our own INFERIOR place in the American social hierarchy. Even those of us who love and embrace our blackness know that black is the one thing few other people in America want to be. Remember the Chris Rock joke about how the white male busboy in a concert hall wouldn’t want to trade places with him–a black man–even though Rock is rich, famous and successful? It’s funny, cause it’s true.

    So, while biracial Halle Berry gets a “Go, sister, go!” for proclaiming herself a black woman, and Barack Obama is embraced as a black man, we are suspicious of Tiger and Vin Diesel and those folks who confound us by not taking their “rightful” place in the African Diaspora. “Why don’t you want to black?” We wonder. It should not matter what someone else chooses to call themselves. Somehow, though, we can take the white busboy not wanting to be one of us, but someone who shares a bit of our history? Similar facial features? That stings too much.

    Is it right to make biracial people carry the burden of historical racial wrongs and bear the scars of the black community? Emphatically, no. But perhaps we could more quickly end the “one drop rule’s” hold on the black community if we acknowledged why we cling to it so.”

    Preach it sista!

  107. when African American’s don’t look like the “black stereotype” our cultural identity is called into question. Because so many people are identified with “black stereotypes” it confuses people and challenges their perceptions of American blacks. Once people understand that “black” is not our culture but a color they can begin to recognize that the African-American culture is a diverse culture of people and no we don’t all look alike,

  108. Ronald I can appreciate your perspective though I don’t understand or tolerate the “issue with black people” argument. African Americans, are the most accepting and diverse culture of people partly because we were formed from many nations. Not because we have no identity. We embrace our African-American heritage and recognize it as a bonding agent that binds us closer to everyone based on that shared cultural identity. It is hard for me to know that you understand that we have an African American culture that shapes our experiences and we DO celebrate that . We are not unique in that. Although I have never heard of any other culture within any society be negated like that of the “African-American” culture. You are like so many others who fail to recognize that we have a cultural heritage that is unique from any other culture! We are not South Americans nor ,Africans nor like any other culture of people who you think we need to look towards to “determine who we are” we are well versed on that. The issue is that you and people like you love to dictate and tell us who we are not. We are not confused on who we are Just like there are “white” Hispanics and “black” Hispanics, They have a shared cultural identity that unites them. You are focusing on the politics of skin color which is irrelevant to cultural identity. If we choose to use the color “black” to define who we are how does that undermine us in any way??? What you do see in south America is the tendency to identify as white no matter what the actual skin color that one may posses How does that mindset advance them in anyway??? Just why wouldn’t we want to be identified as black even if we don’t appear black in color ??? Could it be because we have been so marginalized as a culture that so many negative stereotypes are still so pervasive outside of our culture that we want to be recognized as examples of those who posses African American decent that defy those stereotypes of the “black” culture. The “black” stereotype is just that, so when you see anything contrary to that don’t be so dismissive. To be so identified with the belief about “black” culture is what is oppressive. There are just too many things we as a culture would have to suppress in order to fit in that black box.So please stop suggesting that we contort to fit any, national and International misinterpretations of what it means to be “African-American”. Yes….. you have successfully defined what it means to be “black” in America and the “black experience” but what we are attempting to address is the African-American experience in America. I feel sorry for you and anyone else who are still confused and doesn’t know there is a difference.

  109. Ronald, being Black is not about skin color or skin tone, You continue to talk about the one drop rule when that is not what this is about. Again, as I have said a million times I am talking about people with a Black parent who appear White. Also, I could care less what someone would be classified as based on peoples perception, opinion, or what their culture says is Black. That’s beside the point, irrelevant, and part of the problem. You either are Black or you’re not. We’ll agree to disagree because you obviously do not get the point I am trying to make and you don’t want to.

  110. Li, the issue I have with Black American culture is that we exalt and perpetuate the one drop rule. What I meant about the definition of black being different in other countries is that this “rule” did not exist in ANY other country the definition of black is quite different EVERYWHERE else in the world. If you want to know what I take issue with, is that some (DEFINITELY not all) blacks STILL define themselves and the black community with this notion. It was racist and incorrect!

    What boggles my mind as a black person is this obesseiveness with finding the “other” in whites and non blacks. I truly believe that this “quick to accept” people that clearly do not look black is a way for us to try and elevate ourselves and say “hey, there really is nothing wrong with being black and racism should not exist because even white looking people could be black!” HOGWASH! Try going to any other country in the world and tell the French, Africans, Brazilians etc that someone looking like Wentworth Miller is black. They don’t understand the concept because they did not live through the Jim Crow era of “one dropping.” Tom Sizemore is RACIALLY white because he shares all the RACIAL traits of a white person. This is ignorance on our part. NO one would look at Tom and say “Hey, there goes a NEGRO!”

    Both of you ladies should Google an article called “White face, black lineage, SO What?” The woman that wrote the article (A black woman) made a great point. Its about the story of a WHITE man that traced his black lineage. The author who was critiquing the article said that blacks are so accepting (and even seem excited) by the idea that whites could be secretly “passing/” And she made a good point in saying that we are now turning to white looking people to find an acceptance of ourselves. WE have complained for a millennia about oppression from whites, yet allowing white hatred (one dropping) to define ourselves is so destructive and hypocritical. I see black people always trying to find “blackness” in others and reeks of insecurity and desperation. Ever see a website called “Celebrities Passing for White.” It was created by a black person and all the people commenting are blacks posting pics of white celebs they believe are “passing.” Serious people? This is how far we have come? We have nothing better to do? Why are we the only group with such a page? I have never seen a page like this created by Hispanics, or Asians, My wife and I were disgusted by this but I digress.

    When I see people that clearly do not look black identifying with being black why don’t we call THEM passing. Are they not PASSING for black? That was an interesting question asked to me by a French gentleman I met in France. In most of Europe its pretty cut and dry, you look white, you are classified as white. Makes sense to me. You can have African blood and still be white. In America, if someone is 1/4 Chinese, we don’t tell them they have to identify with being Chinese, yet black people will almost demand that a person with as little as 1/4 of black blood say they are black. I see this too often and its inane.

    I wish blacks would get on the same page. That is the only way we will ever truly be united. Another interesting thing you may want to view is a YouTube video that was made by a young black gentleman talking about the one drop rule hurts the black race, our perception of beauty and our self esteem as true black people.

    And Dangerous, I still have to disagree with you. Tome Sizemore IS white, he’s biracial but anywhere in the world he would be classified as white. If 99% of the free world would classify you as white, you ARE white. Again, no one would see Tom as a Negro. I really don’t understand why some blacks have a hard time grasping the concept. In fact, for Tom to look as white as he does, who is to say that is “black” identified parent was really that black at all???? We would be dealing with ANOTHER person who was one dropped.

  111. Thank you Dangerous Lee for having the courage to speak about the perceptions of race in our society . I appreciate your voice, it articulates my beliefs as well and I do understand exactly where you are coming from. I was so thrilled to finally be able to discuss this subject without the fear of being attacked thanks to you! There is a cultural influence in this country that tends to undermine African heritage and exalt European heritage and their perceptions and depictions of our cultural as being the acceptable standard. But when we embrace who we are and speak up about how we define ourselves, we shed light on who we are as individuals within a diverse culture and not as a race of people.

  112. Thanks for sharing, Li. Very interesting! I love learning new things about this. I also really appreciate your feedback. I finally feel like someone understands where I am coming from on this subject.

  113. Ronald let me make it explicitly clear to you that based on what YOUR “socialization” has been YOU may believe ” TRUE blacks resemble me and look more in appearance like Whoopie Goldberg and Wesley snipes if not darker.” That is YOUR belief based on your limited exposure . You have classified them based on your visual assessment of them. The definition of racism ” any action, practice, or belief that reflects the racial worldview—the ideology that humans are divided into separate and exclusive biological entities called “races,” that there is a causal link between inherited physical traits and traits of personality, intellect, morality, and other cultural behavioral features, and that some “races” are innately superior to others” -. ( )You apply your limited life experiences to quantify and define the black experience, in not only in American, but apparently” 23 other countries” to be exact!!! “black” is made up of a spectrum of colors and nationalities.. People don’t cease to exist just because you personally have never met them. Racism is fostered by that very notion that you will forever be limited in knowledge of every individual so a generalization is made. I find it interesting that you should point out all the hallmarks that makes an individual less then a “true black”, ironically are the same hallmarks which were used at a time when white American geologists were trying to make the case of the “Egyptian” Caucasianiod of Africa, during the same era that they were also attempting to convince people that anyone possessing any black blood no matter how Caucasian in appearance they may be were still “black” less than human and could thereby be enslaved or treated inhumanly free of conscious After all this “race” of people are “like animals”. I find it disturbing that anyone could blame the African- American race for giving “mixed messages” about what it means to be black in American because we are subjected to such extremes and have been defined by those outside our communities, with distorted messages throughout history. Then when we attempt to define ourselves we are meet with hostility because it doesn’t fit into a neat little brown box. We have the unique ability to have a shared African identity, whether you hate it or not we embrace that just like any other nationality does. The difference is in many other cultures outside of America being part African may be accepted as an integral part of the country’s cultural heritage. We just live in a country where our cultural identity has yet to integrate in such a way. But in some sectors of this country it has integrated all parts of our cultural experiences and it tends to be within the “black” community no matter what the nationality. So please don’t define us based on anyone’s definition outside of our own culture. I would appreciate if you could share your experiences based on your experience within “A “black community and I will share with you my experiences based on MY OWN.experience with in my black community.

  114. You are getting beside the point. We are all quite clear that people like Mariah and Wentworth are mixed. No one said that any of these people are PURE Black, but who in America is? You’re creating an argument where there is none. Again, the point is that even though they are “mixed” they have the right to identify as Black (because they are Black)…even you said you agree with that point, so there should be nothing left to debate.

  115. My title doesn’t suggest anything; you made an assumption. It is called “The Half Series” after all! Besides, after reading the entire series my point of view should of been quite clear. And, just because you have never heard anyone say that race is a made up social construct doesn’t mean it’s not. It’s not a widely known fact, so I’m sure that’s why you’ve never heard it before. Research it! I didn’t make it up! There are lots of truths that you, I, and countless others are unaware of. That’s why it’s important to have an open mind. Sometimes you have to unlearn what you have learned and been taught to believe.

    Most Blacks don’t deny the concept of race, how can we? In fact, most human beings don’t deny the concept of race. About Tom, he was passing…do you know what passing is? He is the definition of that. How in the hell can Tom be racially White if he has a Black mother? That makes no sense to me at all but I digress. However, if you’re in fact saying that he should be allowed to live as a Black man and have Black people accept it, then we are on the same page and I’m not sure why we are debating; but everyone needs to accept it, not just Black people. If he and his family had accepted it when he was born we would not be talking about it now.

  116. Again Li, stop the nonsense. BLACK people do not look WHITE without a HEAVY infusion of WHITE blood. I wish more blacks would take courses on DNA and Anthropology. I have BEEN to Africa. On the Ivory Coast you will see Mixed people called the Cape Coloreds and THEY are mixed with European and have the features you describe but even in Africa they are not considered black, they are MIXED. The TRUE blacks resemble me and look more in appearance like Whoopie Goldberg and Wesley snipes if not darker. That is what WE look like by nature. Sorry there are no Mariah Careys running around in Africa saying they are black. She would be Mixed at best. That is what annoys me, you say blacks come in all shades and hair textures and, we do, because this country had slavery and we mixed heavily with whites. So again, the people you mention are MIXED. Stop denying that. This is what makes us look ignorant. You sound like you are stating that PURE black people can look white. Uh, no. Again, please take a trip back to the “mother land” and see what black is. Not one black person I know that has been to Africa has come back to America without a COMPLETELY different outlook on race and blackness.

  117. Dangerous, I am not talking about hiding anything. For the first time in your post I agree with what you said. The point I was trying to make in the first place is that the title of your page suggested that these people were just black and looked white. Tom Sizemore is half black, but RACIALLY he is a white man. I NEVER said he should deny that part of himself. Also, I am not in agreement that he is “passing” if he looks completely white. My point is, he should be allowed to live as a black man, and have black people accept this, even after admitting his blackness. I notice that is is mostly blacks that try to deny the whole concept of race and personally believe its because we have been put down for so long, its a way for us to try and cope and it allows to include people of other races as our own. Not a single white, Hispanic, Chinese, etc has ever told me they believed the concept of race was an illusion and a social construct. In fact, in Hispanic culture, most hispanics identify each other by race “Blancas” (white hispanics), Negritos (black hispanics) and “Morenos” (darker Hispanics who appear more Indian. We are NOT all the same physically and there is nothing wrong with that. I think the Hispanics way actually makes more sense. Its like saying, yes, I acknowledge you are a WHITE Cuban or a BLACK Cuban. They acknowledge sharing similar culture and language but also that their physical traits are different. We will look a white looking mixed person in the face and say they are BLACK. THAT is what makes no sense. They are PART black. Just like Tom Sizemore. Still RACIALLY white in appearance.

    And to Li, I have no idea what you mean. Why did you reference Italian people in your argument? SOME southern Italians may have Moorish ancestry but you neglect the fact that many Northern Italians are, in fact, VERY white as many of them are mixed with Austrian and German. Another argument I am tired of hearing. Yes, a lot of Spaniards and Italians have distant African ancestry but they are still white.

  118. Ronald another thing I wish to make you aware of is that yes you can be any number of those so called white Phenotypes and not be white or light skinned or be of the “white” culture, I’ve seen black skin with natural violet and blue eyes,natural blonde hair and so- called “white” features that clearly confounds people like you. You can see the confusion in their eyes when they see my daughter and I,”dumbstruck” ! Wanting to know who and what we are , where are we from ,why is she so white and I am brown and is her dad white! You should see the look on their faces when I say we are African American’s and her dad is too..Don’t you know your black history!!!? I love to see the looks on their “multiracial” faces when they want to know where did she get that blonde hair!!! Then I tell them she got it from both of us along with the other blonde decedents from my black family. What is so confusing about being black with so called white features, does it force you to have to reconsider your perceptions about race and how you categorize people. Does it help you to sleep well at night knowing that blacks will always look black and white will always look white? I noted that at the international school my daughter attends, in her class there are kids from several nations, of the 9 black kids in that class all of them but 2 have two traditionally “black” parents but all posses features traditionally associated with a “white” phenotype; blue and green eyes straight hair thin lips white skin blonde hair waist length hair these aren’t bi-racial kids. They reflect the face of blacks in America. But you don’t see them cause your too busy trying to classify them as “other”, when they are culturally identified by the heritage of one or more parents as black. Why do you have to suggest what else they are? The reasons why racism is so rampant in America is because to be revealed as ” black” is made out to be shameful and lowly. They didn’t implement a one drop rule to shame white America are you kidding!!!? It was an attempt to increase their bottom line. We stopped looking African in the first few generations of indentured servitude.When color is no longer a useful hallmark of an enslave people you enslave them by their lineage. Its no different then kings and queendoms but in reverse. Why the gasp of disbelief that one would choose to now be identified as black or African American when it’s not so black or white?! When there is no one drop rule to “chain” them to blackness. Would you consider it may be because they are proud of their dare I say “African- ancestry” in a world that shuns its black roots !!!!??? Why the hell is that such a radical notion???

  119. I love that the fact that we exists precludes your theory about what constitutes “black” . I shouldn’t have to state the obvious but having brown skin doesn’t make me “black”either but having been descendant from African American’s does make me indeed “African hyphen American”, who has heard of this dilemma among Italians??? But apparently it serves some higher purpose to classify African Americans based on how black in color they are.. that my friend is color-ism at its best and you have been indoctrinated!

  120. Ronald: We’re too far gone in this world to ever be on the same page with this subject. In your first post your argument was based solely on skin color. That is exactly the problem, in my opinion, with this entire topic and the point of this entire series is basically saying that color is not an indication of ethnicity, that skin color does not matter. We’re too focused on skin color and skin tone! I had no idea Tom Sizemore had a Black mother. I find that very interesting, actually. And it helps to prove my point that color is not an indication of ethnicity or in this case Blackness. All of this is a mute point because as I have said over and over, race is not real. We’re debating over some made up bullshit built to separate us!

    I also find it interesting that Tom Sizemore had to “reveal” he had a Black mother. Why was it a secret? That’s my whole point, your heritage, whatever it may be, should never be something that is hidden or shamed, but of course because of our history that is filled with racism and slavery Tom apparently felt the need to keep the fact that he’s Black a secret. And, yes he is Black, but he is also White…but then again because race isn’t real…he’s just human! But, I really don’t understand your argument. You have a problem with people identifying as Black if they look White, but you don’t have a problem with someone who looks White, has a Black mother, but doesn’t identify as Black in any way shape or form. I don’t get it.

    I too agree that a person can and should identify as they like, but and it’s a BIG but…Tom Sizemore should not have to deny his Blackness because he looks White. Having said that “passing” is not a new thing! I read parts of his Wiki page and it seems that his Black grandfather encouraged him to pass and not reveal that he has a Black mother so that he could get ahead in Hollywood. Ha! How ironic! How is that any better than one drop madness? You should never have to deny a parent. The only thing I like about Tiger Woods is that he identifies with all parts of his heritage and that’s also why I really dig Wentworth; he embraces all of himself, he doesn’t hide it. It’s about having pride and dignity in who and what you are. Denying Blackness is passe and in my opinion weak! Racism wins when you start denying the most beautiful parts of yourself.

  121. Sorry Li, I just saw the rest of your post. If you have blonde hair, white skin and blue eyes, you are white. Go to Africa and tell me you see Tribesmen with those features. If you look that way, its cause YOU mixed with whole LOTTA white! The ONLY reason a white looking person would identify as black is because of the One drop rule in America, WHICH is the only country that had that law and it was put in place because of a HATRED of blacks. Know your history. It was to punish and subjugate WHITES that mixed with blacks. Go to ANY other country in the world (been in the military and have been to 23 to be exact) and you will not see WHITE looking people classified as black (self classified or otherwise). In fact, if you talk to people from other countries they find it confusing that someone like Mariah Carey would call herself black.

    On the George Lopez show recently Mariah was on and even George Lopez asked her why the hell she called herself black and, of course, she blamed American politics. So George took a DNA test and found out he’s 3% African. He mocked it by throwing his hands in the air and declaring himself now black. Yeah, that’s how stupid it is. Li if you identify as black, more power to you. But if you do not share the same traits as me, you are not RACIALLY black. It kills me this ignorance keeps getting perpetuated by my own people. I’m just glad that a lot of us don’t agree. There’s hope for us yet.

  122. Li, no one is denying that African Americans are comprised of “mixed race” people. That was my point. Its like saying Asians are not comprised of Eurasians or Hispanics are not comprised of European as well. You just reiterated my point. You referred to them as MIXED. MIXED does not always = BLACK. And in saying it does, all you are doing is denying and ignoring the person’s OTHER race or heritage. Being black does NOT negate or dominate what someone identifies with. We have this attitude that if you are part black you have to say you are black and I call BULLSHIT!

  123. I appreciate you my Dangerous sistar! I think anytime you speak the truth the opposition to truth is always strong especially concerning race .How dare you enlighten folks that the African American culture is A-M-E-R-I-C-A-N culture too.. How dare you imply that African-American’s are made up of mixed race people too! Don’t you know what it means to be “black” in America!!!! Where is Soledad when ya need a sista!

  124. Again, that’s your problem. Not mine or Wentworth’s. It’s not about denying a person’s whiteness or whatever else they’re “mixed” with. Who denies being White, anyway? It’s about not denying a person’s blackness, which has nothing to do with skin tone. I appreciate you reading and sharing your feedback.

  125. I don’t have a problem with them acknowledging it and being proud but they should not be referred to as SOLELY black because its incorrect and ignorant. Not all of us blacks agree with you.

    Maybe if we stopped claiming non black people and making website about who or who isn’t black and focused on black illiteracy rates, teaching black men to be fathers to children rather than having 12 baby mamas, stopped with all the black on black crime and learned how to maintain our neighborhoods property values maybe there would BE more pride in being black. We focus on color and what supposedly black people look like instead of elevating
    ourselves. We are the only group that shows our insecurity by claiming people who are not of the black race and it reeks with insecurity. It’s not colorism, its perpetuating a Nazi like racism where we look obsessed with claiming those with black blood. A white looking dude wants to claim his blackness, I’m fine with that. But I’m also gonna point out that he’s still, on the eyes of the world, white. Lets make sense. Went worth and I are NOT of the same race and I find it insulting someone would say we are. Kinky hair vs straight, white skin versus black, in some cases blue/green eyes vs brown/black. WHITE traits versus BLACK. Us “blacks” supposedly vary in appearance only BECAUSE alot were mixed with varying degrees of European! Again, MIXED people that look white. Call then what they are. You and I are BLACK.

  126. Wow.. I am floored by people’s ignorance about the social constructs of race especially in European lead societies. Let me say as an African-American mom who is raising an African-American child who has two African-American parents but looks to be more so called “European-decent” with blonde hair and white skin and “white” features than “African-decent,” I have seen and heard the most draw dropping eye popping ignorance about race and the prejudice perceptions from people about what “black is or should be but I can tell you what is not! Black is not ,corn-rows, dark skin, wide-nose, thick lips and a southernplaylistic drawl, white is not blonde hair, blue eyes, light skin, thin lips and speaking like your suckin on helium all the time. The problem is that people who feel the need to identify with the dominate culture based on such superficiality believe that I should collude with them in effort to support their delusions about race, and mainly what will hopefully confirm their white identity. You can’t look at anyone and see all the genes that make that person ignorant so how can you identify by site alone all those things that make up their race. You can’t that is why the social constructs of race exists. It is an effort to categorically put people “in their place” in society. Historically BLACKS have been told just where that place is and what BLACK is. Currently “self” identified people are choosing who and what they want to be identified as but don’t be pissed off at me if ” I “don’t recognize you as such. It is my perception of you, I own it, I can’t impose a racial identity on anyone because unlike the past today we have a choice and that is the ONLY thing that has changed .If I with my “black “skin and “Italian” looking features and ‘”white girl”- shaped body with a white-skinned “mixed looking” “blonde” haired child embrace being just black at a time where it is “exotic” to be “something else” that should tell you how absolutely fly I believe African-American culture is. It embodies all those images. Somehow people who choose to self-identify as black despite their “obvious” “Euro” features know that. Us “blacks” are not attempting to claim people who “look” white as black. African-American as a whole have be racially mixed in this country for century’s. African-Americans are not one monolithic group of people but have been categorize as such. We are all things a multitude of colors and features which include European ones as well. Unlike other cultures the “black experience” is unique to the culture of this country..There is no comparison, We as African-Americans continue to defy the limiting constructs of race while embracing it all at the same time. Anyone attempting to tell us who we should be , should check their inferiority complex at the door . I believe the African- American culture is the only culture in the world where people outside of the culture vehemently try to define and subjugate racially for their own profit and benefit. People need to stop trying to identify and define who we are “Nosce te ipsum.” know thy self, just what are you?

  127. This series is titled what it is to evoke conversation and that is what it does. If you have an issue with mixed or biracial people identifying as Black or with people referring to them as Black that is YOUR issue. By the way, that’s also colorism!

  128. HI Dangerous. Very interesting site. I found your link by accident after reading several articles about similar topics. First, let me say I saw the pic of you and your daughter and you are both beautiful.

    As a black man, and I mean black – lol. Picture Wesley Snipes “type”. I know I’m not necessarily your flavor based on your early posts (JUST kidding), I did find this an interesting read but I disagree with the title. Shouldn’t the post read “mixed”, “biracial” or “half black” people that look white? The title is misleading and too all encompassing. The title infers that these people have nothing in them but black and SOMEHOW came out looking white. Isn’t that completely dismissing the white blood and European ancestry that made them look WHITE in the first place? I’ll bet if you did a DNA test, they have more European ancestry than African. A black person with NO European blood will NEVER look white. Sorry, ain’t happening. The people you show (i.e.) Wentmorth Miller is a mixture which is why he looks white in the first place. I take issue when blacks refer to mixed people as black when most of the free world, (including most whites who long ago abandoned the one dropping we so tightly hold dear to) no longer refer to them as such. I have a lot of mixed race friends and many of them identify with what they most closely resemble. I have a friend who is 3/4 white and 1/4 Jamaican but he considers himself white and I don’t take issue with it at all. Wouldn’t you say that mixed race people that look white are MIXED and look white, not BLACK that look white. Its an oxymoron and actually kind of insulting and dismissive of their white ancestry which played a HUGE part in their appearance in the first place. Peace :)

  129. I came across this site after reading several articles about race. SheliaP, I have to say I find your outlook refreshing. I wish more African Americans were as enlightened about race as you are. There is an author and activist named AD Powell who has helped to start a HUGE movement for multiracial and biracial people who do not identify with being black. One of her books is called “Passing for what you REALLY are.” and it talks about multiracial whiteness.

    Having lived in America, Europe, India and many other places in the world, a lot of American blacks may be shocked to know that America is the only place where race, particularly the notion of being black, is SOOOO confusing and misguided. The REVERSE one drop rule is in place almost everywhere else, meaning, pretty much any amount of WHITE blood makes you NON black. I have met Brazilians, Dominicans, etc who look black but do not identity with being black although their phenotype is completely African! If they have any white blood, a lot of them will actually say they are white. You would be amazed at what is considered “white” in Brazil. Many of these “white” people look less Caucasian than people that have been “one dropped” here in America.

    I am going to use my own experiences. I am a mixture of Spanish, Irish, Danish, Taino Indian and some distant African ancestry. (I have a great, great grandmother that looks black). I look, for all intent and purposes, white. I have been considered Caucasian by every census taker, doctor, teacher, etc I have ever encountered. My profession has also granted me the opportunity to travel and meet people of all ethnicities and cultures. Without fail, every group I have worked with (Jewish, Italian, Eastern European, Asian, East Indian, etc) have considered me white. MOST Hispanics and blacks do as well. I have, oddly, met a handful of American blacks who have asked if I were “mixed” (I assume with black) because I have a wide nose (so I guess despite my fair skin, blue eyes and straight hair, somehow this one recessive trait is the one thing they see that they think defines me although they are incorrect). Some blacks would jump to the conclusion that I am offended by this but to me its just confusing. This is why I am in full agreement that more AA;s need to get with the program and start realizing that “one dropping” in this country is offensive and actually detrimental to your own race. As a non black identified person, it amazes me how many black people really do accept the idea that any black blood somehow “soils” the white in a person no matter how dominant the white traits and blood are. Its degrading to blacks because it somehow says that ANY blackness should not “allow” you to be a part of the superior and priviledged group. Even a lot of black people I know agree with this. I have done a lot of research on the “mixed white” and “multiracial white” label and I find it refreshing. In pretty much every other country in the world, you can freely say you are white with African ancestry or blood, but here in America, too many blacks want to indoctrinate ANYONE with black blood regardless of appearance. In my opinion, people like Mariah Carey, Jennifer Beals, Wentworth Miller, Tom Sizemore, would all be the perfect candidates for this label because they are NOT light skinned blacks, although I have heard blacks refer to them as such. They are white people with black blood and should be able to identify as such. I used to just identify as white but find this label more appealing and truthful because it allows me to freely acknowledge my non white ancestry without being chained to it and SOLELY labeled by it which would be ridiculous considering my appearance and what I am accepted as by the majority of the world.

    Bless you SheilaP for being a black woman who is helping to educate people on this. I think, and no offense, but American blacks need the most education on this because the Jim Crow era in American history really distorted the concept of race in the black community.

  130. Hi Dangerous.

    I am back again and had to share some readings I came across. As I mentioned earlier, I have been faced with the dilemma of trying to explain race and appearance to my dark skinned, very black phenotyped daughter, who I have seen deal with the effects of allowing “white” people to claim sole or mainly black ancestry. This has become a bot of an obsession for me and has also inspired me to write a blog.

    I have been reading that there is an upsurgence of “white” americans that are now using the term “Mixed race whites” and “multiracial whites”. Have you seen this? A good friend of mine who is Jewish, Irish, Spanish and of Afro descent told me about this and I found it fascinating AND refreshing. This is what she calls herself. As someone that is MANIACALLY opposed to the one drop rule (a rule that forced Walter Francis White, a WHITE man with only 1/16 of negro blood) to live as black and who wound up heading the NAACP, I have to say I thought this was a major breakthrough for people who have a white phenotype but want to be able to freely proclaim African descent without being forced to identify solely with being “black.” I would think this is a group a lot of Hispanics and people of Creole descent would even fall into. (I have a couple of friends that are Creoles that also complain of this. No matter how white their appearance, blacks claim them when many have a lot of European blood). You should read a story on the Creoles called “To black to be white and to be white to be black” where many of them tell their stories. But I digress.

    I personally found this a wonderful way to explain to my daughter why she is black and does not appear white as many “blacks” do. And although I understand your site is geared toward BIRACIAL people, I still believe that this new term covers many biracials as well (Mariah Carey, Gabrielle Reece (who looks TOTALLY Caucasian, I mean DAMN! You SURE heard dad is Trinidadian?????, Tom Sizemore, Jennifer Beals). All of these fair skinned, straight haired, Caucasian featured people would be perfect candidates for the “Multiracial white”. I have read some readings by a woman named AD Powell who has gained quite a following on this from blacks, white and mixed race people.

    I am all for people wanting to embrace their “blackness” but at least now I have found a way to explain to my daughter that many of the “blacks” she sees are Multiracial whites who embrace their black identity.

    I know there will be backlash by a lot of people in the black community on this one but honestly, I think the backlash stems from miseducation and, dare I say it, self hatred. Let me explain. The one drop rule has made many of us believe that any black blood automatically negates whiteness. Do you realize how hateful that is? Most of us do not take issue with whites that claim Native American blood. Heather Locklear, Johnny Depp these are whites that boast their native ancestry yet we still see them as white. Is that because we do not look at Native blood as inferior? For us to say that white looking people are “passing” for white, its like saying they have no right to live freely among the “priviledged” and superior group. You see this kind of “drag you down” mentality in our community all the time. In the movie Jumping the Broom, the one black actress insults Angela’s Bassetts’ rich, sophisticated and educated ways by reminding her she is just “black.” as though you cannot be both. And we find this funny!!!!

    This may not be for you, but I adamantly tell my daughter the African blood in her veins is beautiful and she should be proud of it. I also want her to understand that that blood is no “lesser” than white blood so someone with this blood can choose to be whatever race they want. I am all for the “Multiracial White” and I think more blacks need to get on board with this instead of forcing people with white phenotypes who can live as white, to be labeled as “black.” Its a lot healthier and to me, it elevates blacks.

    I will keep you posted on my blog.

  131. I totally get where you’re coming from and I understand what you’re saying and asking. In the Black community color has always been an issue and a lot of that has to do with racism and the after effects of slavery, and in my opinion ever since the idea of separate “races” became a social construct color has been an issue that divides us all but that was the point of creating “races”. Black people come in various shades and we should embrace that. There’s nothing wrong with people like Mariah Carey or Wentworth Miller embracing their Black side. The fact that some of us have a problem with that are suffering from colorism and internalized racism.

    However, because we are judged by our color in this world, Hollywood capitalizes on that fact and they choose to often use “mixed” or light skinned Black people in movie roles because in society lighter shades of Black are thought to be more beautiful. It’s also important to remember that Hollywood is about make believe and creating a fantasy. Using a light skinned actor is not always a bad thing, but like you said and I agree, it should make sense for the character. Furthermore, we can’t look to Hollywood for answers or for things to make sense. We have to educate ourselves and our children in the home as well by seeking out books and publications that offer factual historical and present day information. Then we should take that information and share it with the world; which is what I feel I am doing.

    On the bright side there are more Black women on TV, such as, Kerry Washington and Meagan Good and neither are very light skinned.

  132. Hi Dangerous,
    I am very happy I came across your site. A great read. I have a question for you. I’m a black woman so I was intrigued by the title of your series. This may not really pertain to your site but I am trying to get insight into something that I have been asking a lot of my black female friends. Here goes..

    I am a black woman. Dark skin, short tight hair. NEVER have I been mistaken for anything but black – LOL. I have lived in a society where, for too long, women like me have not been considered beautiful. A lot of black men I know go for mixed girls, Latinas and even white women. There is an article circulating today about how a white model was chosen to portray an ‘African Queen.” This has outraged the black community but i feel its our own fault. In recent years I have seen movies and shows were white actresses are portraying biracial women (Angelina Jolie, Jolene Blalock) and even playing black! (i.e. Elizabeth Berkeley a few seasons back on NYPD Blue.) I also remember years back how a lot of my black friends used to talk about Vanessa Williams and about how we never really had a Black Miss America because she looked so white she did not represent black women. I guess this is my issue/question. As black people, are we undermining ourselves and cutting our own throats by accepting non looking black women as “sisters” I read a post awhile back on this site where a woman commented on how it hurts the black community when women looking like Mariah Carey (who would be white anywhere else in the DAMN world) are on the covers of Essence and Ebony. I have a daughter who is very black like myself and she asks SO many questions. She wonders why as a black girl SHE does not have long blond hair like Mariah, or fair skin. Again, I know this may not be on topic, but have you ever addressed this with black women? The only way I could explain to my daughter why she does not look like them is because I told her these girls are mainly white. We are LETTING white women portray us in movies because we allow people that look damn near white to say they ARE black. It hurts our children’s self image and I see it in my daughter. She doesn’t understand the one drop rule yet, but its allowing Hollywood and society to say that to be beautiful and black, you have to be, well, white. Do you see my point and how detrimental it is to the dark skinned (and pardon my expression) but nappy haired women among us? We are allowing the standard of white beauty to infiltrate our community and its making a lot of our young girls feel they do not have a place. I want to write a piece on this and really like hearing what “real” black women have to say.

  133. I am aware that “race” is a construct used for many things, but the point is that “race” is also made up and has been used to separate us as people and put White people at the top of the list. All human beings on earth are 99.9% alike as far as DNA is concerned. In the past there have been ethnicities of people that were not considered White, but are now. Again, research it. I don’t and can’t make up things that have happened in world history. Also, I do not refer to everyone that is mixed as Black. You can be mixed with many ethnicities and none of them of African decent. Please stop misunderstanding or putting words in my mouth. I am referring to people with a Black parent in this series. I am referring to myself and my daughter. I really do not understand why so many of you are having a hard time understanding where I am coming from. It’s quite simple. Read the entire series! So many of you feel obligated to teach me a lesson when posting comments. I don’t need your lessons. I need you to comprehend correctly. Lastly, “colored” is considered offensive and is not a term that is used in America, hasn’t been for decades. You’re either Black or African American.

  134. Most people in my field do not agree. It is not people in the scientific community that agree with this concept but rather people in non scientific circles. Throughout the world, race is still a construct used to help analyze genes as well as various diseases more prone to certain “races.” There are difference within the races and that is something people try to deny because they feel its a way to end racism when that is simply not true.

    One other fact I would like to point out. I mentioned my travels and stay in Africa. The reason being not only for research but that I am a descendant of a group of Cape Coloureds. You may be familiar with our heritage. We are of mixed race and ethnicity with some appearing more Causcasian (having more European lineage) to some favoring more Indian and even Polynesian and Asian appearances. We are not considered white nor black but mixed although some are racially white and even Asian in appearance. You should read a piece that was written entitled: “I am not black, I am coloured.” In America, coloured means black whereas in many other parts of the world it does not. Studies have been done on our group even when it comes to diseases and various inherent racial traits and true to form, those of many African descent have dealt with ailments more prone to blacks and vice versa. Its a well known fact even in the medical community that certain cell deviations are more common among blacks (sickle cell) and other forms of disease are more prevalent in whites. While I would love to see an end to racism and do agree that has a race of humans we do have a lot of commonalities, race is, and always will be, a method used to determine those of certain appearance, physical traits and physical dominance as well as inferiorities.

    I mention the Cape Coloureds because you continuously refer to those of mixed heritage as black though this is incorrect. We acknowledge that although we are “mixed” we can have the dominant racial characteristics of a particular group. Quite similar to American Hispanics, we acknowledge RACE within our group. Black Americans “hijack” a lot of groups with mixed blood and this seems to be an American phenomenon, particularly in the South from what I have seen.

  135. With all due respect, do some research on the fact that “race” is a made up social construct. There’s nothing new or incorrect about it, but it is a little known history fact even for someone as educated as yourself. Look into it! Thanks for reading and commenting.

  136. The last commentator made a good point about races. As for Hispanics, that is an ethnicity. All Hispanics fall either into the category of Negroid or Caucasoid based on appearance and traits. They notion that race does not exist is a new one and an incorrect one. As someone that has studied forensic anthropology, even the skeletal mass will almost always identify race. The reason why the title of this series is a fallacy is because a “black” person cannot look “white.” There are no blond haired, blue eyed Africans. To achieve a European appearance one must be of mainly European blood. Interestingly, I have spent time in Africa. When a true African mixes with a white, the children, almost without exception, look Negro. In America, where African blood has been so heavily diluted by whites through slavery, you will often get a “mulatto” child that looks white. This is because there has been a heavy infusion of Caucasian blood. What is deemed black in America is incorrect because of hatred of blacks and racism. In most other countries in the world, ANY amount of white blood makes not NOT black. Even in blacks America would be surprised if they took a DNA test to see how heavily mixed with European blood most fairer skinned blacks are. In Africa you do not see this as most true African are very dark with pure Negroid features and hair textures. I have studied this and shown pictures to my students of Africans compared to American blacks and the difference in clear. The “blacks” you say that appear to be “white” are of mostly European origin even if they are not aware of it so to call them black is to be instilling the antiquated ODR rule. Even most biracial people in America are not truly biracial in the pure sense of the word.

  137. Ok I have friends that are mixed and some Black and some White.Interestingly these are true comments told to me by them. My pure black friends(all of them) 4 told me that either their parents or relatives would try pumping into their heads”Use Whitey”.What does that mean I would ask,and they would say stuff like “marry someone white” or “rip em off”.next when taking a class in Race,I learned that there were 5 races of folks Mongoloid(asain)Negroid(Black)Caucasoid(White)Native Americans,and Austrailian Aboriginees.Tell a Hispanic this once and you’ll have an arguement on your hands(or a fight)but like it or not we all come frome these races and all have unique physical traits.After that we can say we are blue bloods,and then mutts.My family started Blu blood Irish and then went mutt.There I said what I felt I had to say.Bryanrox11

  138. I never said that a person with ANY amount of Black blood in them should identify as Black. I am referring to people with a parent that is Black. I’ve said that more than enough times to be understood. Also, there ARE Black people that appear White or non Black, your thoughts/opinions against that are irrelevant. I have also conducted a series of interviews with people who are “mixed” that you may want to read. The links to those articles are below. And again, HUGE SIGH, color is not an indication of ethnicity. Read the entire series as well as my other comments as a whole, don’t just dissect certain things that I have stated.

    In regards to Italians; I am aware that they are considered White and I use “considered” because as I have also stated earlier, race is a made up social construct (research that!) and there is much to be learned about the implications of that, but Italians are also “mixed” and have an ethnic appearance. I have been told by an Italian man that his family (I believe they are Sicilian) holds darker skin in high esteem but because he is on the lighter side, he gets crap about it from his family.

    Finally, it’s not that I don’t hold White people’s opinions in any esteem in general, but on the subject of race I don’t because race/racism does not affect White people. You’re coming from the outside looking in perspective!

  139. Wow, wow and just wow! I’ve been reading this site and the comments and need to add my two cents. As a white guy (I’m half Irish and half Italian) and yes Dangerous, Italians ARE white lol. Anyway, I was in a class recently where the issue of race came up. There was a black guy in our class from the south who thought alot the way you do. You refer to people on this post with any black in them as black. The other black people in class didnt agree. Me and the other whites in the class chimed in (because by now the blacks were all arguing with each other). Believe that? They were arguing with each other over who is black! I live in NY so the southern guy’s concept of race was not met with too kindly by the white OR black northerners. He tried to convince people that many known white people were black (Pink, Julia Roberts ( he swears she’s a southern creole), Minnie Driver, Justin Tomberlake, the list was endless. This may not have to deal directly with your post, but what gives. Us white folks are always bring blamed for prejudice but not one of the people he mentioned even looks remotely black. Alot of people on here mentioned Mariah Carey and Jennifer Beals too. I’m
    As white as they come and would never question these women’s whiteness if they didn’t claim any other ethnicity so what gives? In doing some research online your site came up high in my search. I have to admit I got a good laugh out of the title. Not to be antagonistic but black people don’t look white! That’s like saying hot is cold. Or ip is down. And I know you said once you don’t hold white people’s opinions in any esteem but considering whites are the one that started the one drop rule, I find it funny blacks continue while no whites I know do! So much for black progress.

  140. Sorry, not wrong. Blacks that are pure black will NEVER and I mean NEVER, ever, ever look or pass as white. And we wonder why other races look at us as unevolved and stupid. Any “light skinned” (and God I am so sick of that phrase) “black” person that identifies with black but looks white would show alot (if not mainly) white blood if given a DNA test. Proven fact. Lets stop perpetuating the ignorance. Thanks…

  141. Thank you for helping out, wonderful information. “A man will fight harder for his interests than for his rights.” by Napoleon Bonaparte.

  142. And, actually, the one thing I forgot to add was that even the title of this series is a contradiction in logic. When black people look white. Black people cannot look white without being heavily loaded with white blood which, in essence, makes them no longer black.

  143. You’re very evasive in your replies. How am I missing your point. It seems you, like some blacks that still do, are missing mine.

  144. Thanks again for responding, but it seems you totally misunderstand the point of this series and any of the comments I have made. I appreciate you keeping the dialogue alive, tho.

  145. Interestingly enough, since my last post, I had a chance to travel with a friend of mine to Europe. As a black woman, it was an interesting experience. What I found to be very different there (as I think someone on here noted) is that the concept of race is very different in Europe (and in most parts of the world) than it is here. What I learned is that, in England particularly, there is growing number in the mixed race population. Not having a “one drop rule” in place there, a lot of mixed race people that favor their white side, classify themselves as white and it is accepted. I met a woman that looked white and she admitted to being half black, actually her mother was biracial which made her only a quarter black. When I asked her if she identified with being black or white, she looked at me quizzically as though the questions didn’t make sense. She said she was white but readily admitted her black lineage. Not one frowned or raised an eyebrow to this as it was accepted as virtually law.

    As a black woman this did not bother me a bit. I think our need to “claim” everyone is desperate and a sign of insecurity on our part. I say people should be able to identity with what they feel the most like (or look the most like in her case). I don’t understand why as blacks we feel that having black blood cannot allow someone to be white if they LOOK white! Don’t you, as a black woman, see how that perpetuate the old, racist white law that black blood taints anything it touches? I find it offensive and actually find it LESS racist that a someone can be allowed to be white even with black lineage. You post very often how black blood automatically negates the black and you refer to people with black blood as black when this is not the case. In fact, another mixed race young man I met on the other side of the pond, said it most parts of Europe, its the opposite or America. Any amount of NON black blood makes most people view you as NON black. Its not racism, it just allows people to not have to fit into this rigid of conformity of being black when they may not either look or feel black. I found the European way to make a lot of sense.

    On another note, the other issue I have with blacks claiming mixed people is that most American blacks are mixed anyway. Hardly any of us are truly African which is why we vary in shades of brown and even hair texture. That is the white influence as most Africans I have seen do not show traces of European features. We had a discussion among the group I met and one white English man at the table made a good point. He said that slavery mixed the blood of many blacks with white. Therefore, when you mix a lot of American blacks with a white person, you can often times wind up with a “biracial” child that looks white (ie Jennifer Beals, Wentworth Miller, Rashida Jones, Tom Sizemore, Mariahj Carey, etc) but his question was, how much black do they actually have in them anyway? They most likely have more European than black to come out looking as white as they do. That’s a really good point that most blacks negate. I do, and always will disagree with the idea that someone with black blood cannot be white. Perpetuating that notion is to perpetuate the slave owners mentality that we are dirty and can soil the white race. The Europeans view is way saner.

  146. If you had a child with a white man what would you “allow” your child to say they are, since you have a problem with them rightfully saying, Black? My daughter is aware that she is “mixed”, so saying she’s Black is honoring the part of herself that is rooted in pride and great history. It’s not about denying her other half. There’s no reason to deny that you have a White parent because there’s no unjust shame associated with it. Also, my daughter does not “look” White, so when people ask her if she’s Mexican it would be ridiculous for her answer to be, White. If she did “look” white it wouldn’t make sense for her to answer White because she has a parent that’s Black. If she answers Black and White I am fine with that too, of course, because it’s true. It’s about being aware of your ethnicity and being proud of it. Anyone with a Black parent should be damn proud of it and have pride in their ancestry. It’s not something to deny.

    I really don’t understand this distorted mentality that in order to be Black you must have lived the “Black Experience”. First of all the “Black Experience” is different for each Black person, regardless of how they look, and being Black is not based on some damn experience it’s about a birthright. You’re either born Black or not, an experience doesn’t make you Black. Genes do!

    And, the work story you shared just helped to prove my point; that color is not an indication of a person’s ethnic background. You and your co-worker saw things differently; apparently she didn’t appear “cleary white” to her. The issue is that people have different definitions of what makes a person Black when there is only one true definition. Lastly, rumor has it, and I say rumor because I don’t know if it’s true, is that Denise Richards has a Black grandmother. The drama about her being Black is rooted in the fact that her ex husband, Charlie Sheen, called her a nigger.

  147. Great post Ines. But the cultural difference you site is that here in America you would be black which is crazy to me. As a black woman, if I had a child with a white man, I would never allow my child to say he/she was black, yet blacks do it all the time. Is the child supposed to negate 1/2 of his/her heritage? Again, it goes back to the timeless, antiquated, and racist one drop rule. To say that someone cannot be white because they have black in them is insane. A lot of blacks classify people as black who have not experience life as a black person. I’m going to give you an example of how twisted blacks have it in regards to race,

    This is a TRUE Story. I worked in a doctor’s office about a year ago. When we met with patients, if race had not been given on an app, we were supposed to put the race we thought the person appeared. Ironically enough, this was never an issue when the white or Hispanic workers had to do this. (By the way, I’m jumping ahead but the doctor decided NOT to practice this anymore and just asked patients when they registered with our practice). Anyway, there was a woman that came into the practice who (to me at least) looked white/of a Mediterranean origin (ie Greek, Italian, etc). A black co worker of mine listed the woman as black. The woman was not aware until she later saw her own record. She questioned the doctor (and was quite annoyed by this). The doctor apologized and even asked my coworker why or how she could make a mistake as this woman was clearly not black. The woman said it was a mistake in front of myself, the doctor and the patient but then told me she actually thought the woman was of non white origin. She only shared this with me, and I guess she felt that because I was black I would agree although I didn’t. The idea that she would put this woman in the same category as herself, and me included, baffled me. The woman was clearly white. This is why I say that blacks are divisive even within their own group. We have distorted view that others do not understand, nor should they. A friend of mine told me recently (and quite mockingly) that she read an online article where a black woman stated that she thought the actress Denise Richards was a light skinned black woman. I can’t make this up. I could send you the link. DENISE RICHARDS. How white do you have to be for blacks to not try to claim you? I understand that you are talking about people that are 1/2 black in your article. But I don’t believe that black blood trumps all. Its not cultural differences, its ignorance on our part brought on by slavery and racism.

  148. I find your post very interesting but i do have to agree with Clyde regarding most issues discussed. I’m portuguese and I have a white mom and a mixed dad. His parents were mixed as well. My grandfather was dutch and my grandmother was african. By european and african standards my dad is mixed race not black and he grew up being treated like that (white people didn’t call him white and black people didn’t call him black). he has a sister (my aut) who is very much white. Blonde hair, pink skin, blue eyes. She was always treated and she always considered herself as a white woman. They’re still brother and sister. I have 3 half brothers much darker then me (my father’s ex wife was mixed as well) and they identify as mixed. I’m very pale, light brown/dark blonde hair, hazel eyes and i identify as white. But still see them as my sibilings. I guess what i’m trying to say with this long family portrait is that
    even if you have a black parent if most of your heritage, looks, background are white you’re still a white person with a black parent. this might be a cultural thing because as Clyde said in europe we don’t go by the “one drop” rule. My dad once told me as a kid if i had been born in the US i woud’ve been called black and i found it very odd. Not saying it’s wrong. It’s a different cultural experience. My dad and my aunt have the same parents, grew up together, get along great, but had different racial experiences therefore identify differently in terms of race. As for your daughter i do get your point. People always think my dad is tunisian or something along that lines. But that happens to a lot of people sometimes among the same race. Portuguese people are stereotyped as dark skinned and dark haired. And a lot of times when i’m abroad and mention i have dutch heritage people tell me “Oh that’s why you’re so pale even though you’re portuguese”. When my maternal grandmother was 100% portuguese (as far as we know) and was blonde and light skinned.
    I hope this made sense, and i still enjoyed your text and comments.

  149. You totally misunderstood the comments that were made in regards to my daughter and took them out of context. Please read all past comments to understand the entire conversation. In fact, it might be a good idea to read all three parts of this series before commenting. You and Clyde seem to have this ass backwards idea that you ARE the “race” that you appear to be, which is ridiculous. The point I was making is that many people assume my daughter is Mexican or Hispanic based on her appearance, so my point was that if we were to indeed only identify as the “race” that we appear to be, then my daughter would identify as Hispanic although she is not. For example, there are plenty of dark skinned people in India, should they identify as Black because they look Black? Color is not an indication of ethnicity or “race”. Why can’t you get that? That in itself is the entire point of this series!

    I don’t acknowledge that race exists because it doesn’t. Read up on it, honey. I didn’t pull this idea out of my ass! It’s a factual piece of information that shocked me when I first learned it, but also gave me a big reality check. Also, it’s not your place to erase someone’s Blackness because they are light skinned and haven’t experienced racism the way you have. If you’re insulted because a “mixed” person with a light complexion rightfully identifies as Black, that’s a personal problem that you need to work on because that should not affect you in any way, shape, or form. A Black person that doesn’t necessarily look Black has to deal with people that think like you, and that’s an “ism” that they have to deal with that you don’t!

  150. Dangerous, I came across your site by accident. Interesting read though I don’t agree with a lot of your responses. I just read a few of the most recent ones and had to comment. You said your daughter with have to identify with being Hispanic because she is mixed? Really? I have Hispanic friends that look white and not the least bit biracial. Jennifer Lopez his Hispanic and does not resemble a biracial woman at all. If anything, she looks more American Indian mixed with white, but I digress.

    I agree with a lot of points Clyde made. I have to agree with the comment that you ARE the race you look. Why do we get it twisted between race and ethnicity. Race is not an illusion. Do you know that many anthropologists can tell the race of someone based on the bones they find. Is that an illusion? I happen to be a black woman that gets very irate and insulted when white looking people try to identify with me. Let me give you an example:

    I have a friend that is actually “mixed”. She looks so white that we both know her “mixed” side probably has more European than African. Anyway, she has tried on occasion to tell me she empathizes with me and understands the “black experience” On several different occasions I have been on the receiving end of racism in her company when she has not. From looking at homes in white neighborhoods to going into high end stores together and having her get approached first (and sometimes solely) to getting pulled over for a speeding ticket and having her be the only one addressed by the officers and even flirting her way out of the ticket. I have told her she is white and her experiences are NOT mine. They are NOT. I think its admirable that she admits her heritage, but lets face it, this world is still a world that looks down on blacks and is run mainly by whites. We are the only group that tries to find the “other” in people when the majority of the world does not see it. You fail to acknowledge that white looking mixed people have almost (if not all) of the racial traits of a white person and therefore are white racially (in the textbook definition of the word race and as most people see it). Ethnically they can be mixed but the frustration comes from that fact that you deny this because you won’t acknowledge that race does exist and it does for the majority of the world (if not all). Please, I don’t want white looking women telling me they are black, its insulting. Here is how I call it, if you can drive through the deep south and fool the KKK, you’re white (I know that was silly and racist but there is some truth to it). Again, I’m talking race, what’s in your blood is your ethnic DNA makeup.

  151. You said – To be black, in my opinion, you have to have mainly of African lineage.

    Duh! I am talking about people with one Black parent and a parent from a different ethnicity, not people who have a grand parent or great grand parent that is Black. I never said that all Wentworth, Jennifer, and Mariah are is Black, I am aware that they are of “mixed” heritage, but they are Black just like my daughter who has a father that is White. Them being White looking is irrelevant to the point I am making and not everyone looks at them and only sees White. What about people like Halle Berry? She has a White parent and a Black parent, but does not appear to be “mixed” at all. You keep making it about color. I am taking the attention away from color because it is not always an indication of ethnic heritage.

    Just because you don’t think someone is Black, even though they have a Black parent, doesn’t make it so. That’s your opinion and perspective based on things you have seen, been taught, and learned, but saying that you are the race that you appear to be is asinine. If that’s the case my daughter and many other “mixed” children would have to identify as Hispanic. Get real!

    Also, this whole idea of living as a Black person is irrelevant, that’s not the point. Black is Black, I don’t care if you live a “lilly white” life. You don’t have to live in the hood and experience racism to be Black. You either are or you’re not! And, please spare me with using the example of ethnically mixed Hollywood actors only playing White roles as an example because Hollywood is about smoke and mirrors. It’s entertainment, it’s fake. It’s pretend and it doesn’t change the fact that Keanu and Jennifer Tilly are Asian. Besides, Hollywood has never been a shining example for race relations.

  152. I love debating this with fellow black people. The point I am trying to make is NOT a denial that the people you mentioned have black blood. The problem I have is that you refer to them as BLACK. They are not. Not by a long shot. They can say they are, and I am sure there are people who will accept them into the black community. Case in point. I don’t know if you are familiar with this, but I travelled once to England. I was interested in the country history and had also read that the monarchy (yes, the Queen of England) was rumored to have black blood from a biracial ancestor. A man I met (white) said this freely and without ill intent, just that it was a matter of fact amongst a lot of people though not entirely proven (you can Google this). I, JOKINGLY, said the queen was black. As I stated before, I do not believe this but thought he would chuckle at my comment. The guy looked at me very sterned face and said, “That is ridiculous., The Queen is English. She is white with possible African ancestry.” I nodded and realized that people in other parts of the world have the right concept. The “white looking” “Blacks” you mention are actually whites with African ancestry. We are the only country in the world that would not allow a person to say that. There are Sicilians I have met who clearly have Moor ancestry but identify with being white and would kill anyone that denied them their Sicilian culture. I do not look at any of these people as black. To be black, in my opinion, you have to have mainly of African lineage. What bothers me is how you say these people (Beals, Wentworth, etc) are black. Like this is all they are, end of story. I am not denying they have African ancestry, I just don’t believe someone has to say they are black because they do. Both Carol Channing and Carly Simon revealed African blood recently, does that make these women now black? I know to some blacks it does but that is just nonsensical. They are white, have lived their lives as white, look white to the entire world and just happen to have black blood. Having some black blood no more makes you black that having white blood makes you white. You are the race you look and the one people see you as. I have a friend who is similar to Wentworth. He is 1/2 black but myself and all my black friends see him as white. He identifies with being white, dates a white girl and although we are all good friends, there is nothing black about him. It doesn’t bother any of us. He will admit to being 1/2 black but also says he as “white as they come” and we agree with him. He is not passing or selling out. Its what he looks like and who he is. The actress Rebecca Hall has a biracial mother and also says she is white. They have no idea what its like to live as a black person. Never faced prejudice, never has had the “black experience.” A few blacks have taken issue with his but most of us in my circle of friends think its nonsense. The boy is as white as Brad Pitt but has a “black” father and was raised by a white mother. To all of us, he is white. I have no problem with that at all and do NOT consider him “passing.” We are the only racial group that takes issue. Keanu Reeves, Dean Caine, Jennifer Tilly and quite a few other actors in Hollywood play white roles although they are half Asian. Keanu ALWAYS plays a white boy. Have you ever seen an Asian person have a problem with this???? Only us folks. Only us.

  153. I don’t disagree that we are all mixed here in America (including “White” people), I do believe that I spoke to that during this three part series. Did you read where I wrote this?:
    Race is a made up social construct. We are all once race. We have different ethnic backgrounds but “race” is not real. We are all mixed in one way or another. The whole White and Black thing was made up for oppressive purposes that are still alive and well today. If it wasn’t I would not be writing this blog. We’re all 99.9% alike in every way.

    Also, please understand that racism, colorism, self hate etc. has affected the entire world, so you visiting Africa and not being thought of as Black because you’re light skinned is an example of that fact. I’m no fool, of course I have seen what people from Africa look like because they look a lot like Black people in America, and I also know that Africans are all different hues as well, not just dark. You guys are really missing the point, big time. You make it seem as if being light skinned means you’re not Black or of African ancestry. That’s just plain ignorant. I know Black history in America, so please don’t insult me by saying that I need to read it, especially since I am informing you of some important historical information in this series. Of course, there is always more to learn because much of our history is hidden or erased, but I do know quite a bit, thank you very much! And, did you really just use an example of a pencil staying in your hair means your Black test? C’mon now! Really? That’s just as bad as the brown paper bag test. It’s insulting and something that is derived from slavery. Being Black is not about being a color, it’s about African ancestry. And, how in the world is it nonsense that Mariah, Wentworth, and Jennifer consider themselves Black? They ARE Black! Sure, they each have a parent that isn’t Black, but the point is that they have Black/African heritage. I’m not sure where you live but please if you ever get the chance, take part in the Undoing Racism project. It’s linked in part of this series. Check it out! You’ll learn quite a bit more about race, color, colorism, and internalized racism.

    Finally, the bigger point that this series is attempting to make is that we need to stop tripping about color, because it doesn’t matter. However, we as people continue to make it matter by making ignorant statements like the ones that I have used as examples in this three part series and by continuing to think that race is real and judging one another based on color.

  154. I could not agree more with Lois. And Dangerous Lee, as a proud black man, I hope what I am about to say will hold more weight. I also find it insulting to Lois who, by her own admission has some “non white” ancestry, was told her comment held no weight when a lot of black folks I know agree with her! I’m black and behind you Lois!

    I have BEEN to Africa. Having learned and researched ALOT about the apartheid when I was there, I was fascinated to learn that most Africans, TRUE Africans. consider most of us black folks MIXED! You ever seen a true African? Sister, THEY are black. They looked at my light skinned companion (looks similar to Ice T) and thought he was anything BUT black. In MOST parts of the world, and NON black blood makes you not black. Just the opposite in America. Go to Brazil and call a dark skinned person black, or say that to a Dominican and you’ll see heads roll! Its just not the same anywhere else in the world. Even during the apartheid mixed people were MIXED, not black, but MIxed and they were given that respect. Alot of the Africans I met looked at us with disdain on our views and do NOT welcome most of us with open arms. If most American blacks went to Africa and other parts of the world where race is looked at much differently than here. we would stop with the nonsense of calling people like Jennifer Beals, Wentworth Miller, Mariah Carey, etc “black.” One African man told me during the apartheid., there was a test used too prove who was black which included the use of a pencil. If a pencil stayed in your hair, you were black, if it fell out, you were not. Read your history. The US, because of slavery and HATRED of blacks is the only country that had the one drop rule and it was put in place to punish WHITES. Basically if you looked white but had a trace of the NASTY black blood, you had to live as black so not to pollute the white race with your FILTH! Our dumbasses keep perpetuating it. Its like saying any amount of black blood pollutes whatever you have in you. And don’t get me started on the “passing for white” phenomenon. If you look white enough that white folks and the majority of the world see you as white, you’re white. You can IDENTIFY with whatever you choose. but you’re white. By most white folks standards, if Wentworth Miller or Jennifer Beals wanted to live as a white. they wouidn’t bat an eye. WHY? Because white folks have moved past the old “one drop”. You think Jennifer or Wentworth would face racial prejudice if they lived as white? Who would know? There is not a white person I know that is not perplexed by the idea of black folks calling a white looking person black. No true “negro” is passing for white. End of story. Not happening. And why do we care? If someone looks white enough to be white, they apparently have enough European blood that it outweighs the black anyway. Do you know that when you research the history behind a lot of biracial people that look white, it usually turns out that the “black” parent is mixed. Case in point, the actress Paula Pattion married Robin Thicke (a white man). She herself is biracial (and to me looks Hispanic) Anyway, her son who is only 1/4 black looks 100% white. I mean 100% Blond hair, white skin, blue eyes, we are talking German or Scandinavian white. Most black folks I know say the kid is white, end of story. But I have actually heard some lameass black folks claim the kid is black cause his mom is 1/4 black. That is so insulting. What about the 3/4 white that is in him? Us black folks are as bad as the Nazis with our beliefs in purism and black blood. Can we give up the nonsense? No, we blacks do not come in all shades and hair types. When a “black” folk has blond hair, blue eyes and fair skin he is, get this…ready…he’s WHITE! Slavery messed up blacks and I just hope that most blacks start educating themselves and stop insulting people with their racist and antiquated views. Be black and be proud but recognize NON blackness for what it is. It just reeks with insecurity. Go to Africa sister and see what blackness really is. Stop perpetuating a myth started by racist whites. As proud blacks we should be so over this already. Most of the blacks I know already are and wish it would stop. Peace

  155. You said – Wow, not all black people “appear”. Sorry, but if you have to tell people you are black, you are not black.

    That’s incorrect and very ignorant. Did you read the entire series? It’s comments like yours that make my skin crawl. And, the fact that you’re a White person speaking on this matter holds no weight with me because historically White people have been misinformed and misleading on the topic of “race” and ethnicity. This is obviously something that you don’t understand so I would suggest that you read more factual information outside of this website before you begin commenting on the topic. Thanks for reading, tho.

  156. Wow, not all black people “appear”. Sorry, but if you have to tell people you are black, you are not black. I am white but I know (and claim) to have mixed ancestry. 100% of people who see me mark me as white (census takers, my doctor, friends, coworkers etc) and I have never been questioned otherwise although I have dark Middle Eastern distant ancestry. I have a friend who is 1/4 black but looks so white you would think she was German and she also lives as a white person with black ancestry and no one gives her any crap about it so what gives?

  157. those fucking kids aint Micheals, that bitch who supposedly is their mother is fucking ugly, they are attractive, and not ONE of those kids have any black features…bullshit

  158. keep up the superb work , I read few posts on this website and I believe that your web blog is real interesting and has lots of good information.

  159. Are you people serious? There are only four races. Jews and Latinos are not a race. Just because you are from India does not mean your race is Indian. Arabs are Caucasian. Latino is a word coined by Napoleon to undermine the Mexican government and lay claim to that land. The first Latin Quarter was set up in 1258 in France, being frequented by college kids studying and conversing in the Latin Language. You guys should really do some research and stop watching Jersey Shore. The country you are from doesn’t mean that, that is your race. It’s your cultural identity, some say ethnicity, And wikipedia doesn’t count for research either, since random people can edit it. Why don’t you all just be happy you are human!!

  160. I was just curious as what most will call a female (almost white in skin color) who happens to have a father = half white/half black and the mother =half white/half black. Back in Trinidad, she will be called a shabeen. any info will be helpful. Thanks. Dr B

  161. @Cemone…

    You sound like a wigger… 7 generations ago your great, great , great grandmother was half black? You’re , what, maybe 1/16th or less black, and you really consider that black and you feel like an alien among whites? I’m not buying it. I think you’re desperate to fit into black culture because you love black men. Just admit that then. You are not black. You are barely even mixed race. Also those DNA tests are notoriously faulty and confusing.

  162. I am a very fair white woman and my husband is a naturally very light Mexican with some facial freckles, except he tans very dark when in the sun. I have reddish/light brown hair and blue/green eyes and he has black hair and hazel eyes. Our son has my skin tone with some freckles on his face, my reddish brown hair color and his father’s eye color, only a little lighter. The most hurtful comment I can remember (in regards to him being his father’s) was at a Chinese restaurant. One of the workers said, “He’s the father?,” as if in disbelief. Another time, we were in Wal Mart when my son was about 2 and he was walking around waving at everyone. A man walked by and said, “You’re not one of those Southwest Texas cotton pickers are you?” !!!! Really?! People are unreal sometimes. Then there have been a lot of people who come up and tell us how much my husband and son look alike, which they do. It is astonishing how much ignorance exists to this day about racial differences. I hope we see a day we do not identify a race by their color alone. I remember Tyra Banks had a show about this back in the day.

  163. Love the post but the comments even more. I think I agree the most with Clyde Barrett, it doesn’t matter. Or shouldn’t. Being half Jewish I am considered Jewish because my mother was. No matter that we were not the least bit religious, I never went to temple, (always celebrated Christmas while growing up), and never was bar mitzvahed or had any friends who were Jewish. It is a non-issue to me, yet when I am around Jews who know of my heritage they insist I’m Jewish. And they hate me calling them Jews. They consider the word a pejorative. The one response you missed on your poll “Is Katie Black? Is Katie White” is “I don’t care”!

  164. my family is from trinidad very mixed my mother is chinese,black, white my father indian,black middle eastern all from trinidad i was born here with 3 other sibling and the others ones born in trinidad there are 8 of us together and we are a rainbow of colors i look like i’m Greek some look 100% black some look mixed but my family alway say black roots even if its weak or strong never forget the mother land.

  165. What im trying to say is that I love all races and cultures….but in spite of my looks, I am in my heart a sista. Even black women, after getting to know me, say the same thing…cari the whitest black woman we eva met gotta love her cuz she know who she is in her heart. It should not matter what we look like, at the end of the day. I feel like a stranger among whites, and I always have and they have always seen me as different, just not sure why. It is what it is. Im not ashamed at all of my mixed heritage, and all my kids will know, understand, and identify with whom they choose without reproach from me. It is what

  166. My message had gotten cut off…..
    Anyway 7 generations ago a mixed cherokee/black woman who passed as cherokee married a german jewish man. And that blood got more and more diluted with white. My dad is 100% irish. My family made jokes about our jewish big butts and our cherokee wide feet. I didnt know any different. Yet something in me knew. After having two kids by caucasian men, I started dating black men…and felt like id come home. that dna test I got back 6 months ago, but now I have two beautiful mixed blood boys as well.

  167. I will be honest. Whites can tell the difference between their own and someone attempting to pass themselves off as white. I was raised white wasn’t told about my cherokee blood til I was a teenager, yet I have always been looked at and felt like an outsider. It doesnt matter that I have ivory skin with a cpl freckles, deep blue eyes, and light brown silky wavy hair. To be honest, I have always felt more at home with black ppl because im free to be myself, no matter what I look like. Anyway I submitted a dna sample because I was curious about how much cherokee I had in me…..come to find out I have equal parts cherokee and black from 7 grn

  168. In 1970 the Prison Industrial Complex incarcerated one in 400. Today one in 100 are incarcerated and far far more are on Watch lists and probation. As we move into the New World Order slave state there is gradually only 2 races emerging: The elite billionaires and the rest of us. Racism sucks but now all the poor are treated like criminals.

  169. Nope. I am so tired of Black Americans parroting the ignorance of others. I just got mad at .my sister/girlfriend for looking at a photo of a light skinned woman and saying, she’s not black. I give up.

    And the dude up there from a “Human Stain” looks Negro all day. White looking is just that. Vin Diesel is black. Clint Black is black…and a million other people with 2 black parents that are black are black. I resign. No wonder blacks can’t move ahead on this race issue. Ridiculous. Lord Jesus. BTW…Judge Bruce of NY was half black, damn you don’t know that brown skinned people can have a “white parent” damn. this is 2012. Something is very wrong.

  170. It’s not just Black folks that are obsessed with color. However, I think it may be an issue for Black people because so many of us have tried to “pass” or are dealing with self hatred, but the point of the series was to point out that it doesn’t matter.

  171. Okay, but the point is why does it matter? Why are black people so obsessed with color? I have a black friend who said she likes to point out the “otherness in whites.” If someone wants to claim they are black, thats great. But I don’t see our obsession with having to find it in everyone. You don’t think its a bit ridiculous? I’m not being confrontational, I am curious and I know alot of blacks who feel the way I do. Alot of blacks have white in them or we would all look life pure Africans with very dark skin and so many of us have caucasian features. Why is it so serious?

  172. You said: “Wentworth looks white. He may have black blood but in the hood he would be looked at as white.” The point is that he is not White, it doesn’t matter what he looks like. That’s the point! Anyway, thanks for reading and responding.

  173. As a black man, I have to say that I am disturbed by these websites. I think black people are more obsessed with color than whites. i am black and proud to be black, but calling a spade a spade when it doesn’t look like a spade is insane. My wife (who is also black and visibly black like myself) make fun of blacks who are always saying that biracial, octoroons, etc are black. Black is also a cultural experience. Wentworth looks white. He may have black blood but in the hood he would be looked at as white. The notion of white looking blacks is an oxymoron. Rashida Jones is half black but plays a white girl cause no one if buying her as a black woman. Enough with the one drop rule people. Its kinda sad. Its like we are trying to make everyone black. A wide nose can also be an Asian feature. I have seen articles online like “Suspected Mulatto” and Celebrities Passing for white were blacks are calling out everyone from John Travolta, to Marilyn Monroe, to Chloe Sevigny, Minnie Driver, Christina Applegate, Elizabeth Berkeley to name a few. One brother said Lily Taylor looks like a light skinned negro. Stop it people. Be black, be proud and let people be what they are. Not everyone is hiding or trying to pass. And even if someone may look like that have mixed blood, so what? Its their business. Only in this country do people who look white get called black. Sad. It doesn’t make us any less black so whats the point? And alot of sistas and brothas this in its sad too.

  174. Its funny how many people believe race is based on appearance. I’m lighter than most mixed children with fairly small lips, a normal sized nose and curly hair. I’m least 65% black, or by American standards fully black. People are just completely dumbfounded when I tell them I’m not mixed or Hispanic. People really need to be more educated in genetics.

  175. sorry about the typo I dont type well I meant my sone does not have white parents.

  176. my sin doen not have qhite parents, But looks white. I am multi racial aNarive american african american and white my sons father is mexican. my son has green eyes fair skin hair that is straight when short. Every one thinks he’s white.

  177. Wow, great topic DL! There is suppose to be another small independent movie that talks about this beat to death topic. It saddnes me in 2011 that skin tones and hair textures defines the standard of beauty STILL in 2011. Sometimes it feels like we’re living on a slave plantation, but it’s all in our minds. I blame a big deal of this on the media and how they constantly portray light skin, straight hair and light eyes women and men as the only standard of beauty. This can be so far from the truth.

    I went to high school with this girl and she had a very dark skin complexion but I tell you guys, she was one of the prettiest girls I had ever seen. She looked literally like a black barbie doll. Tall with the straightest whitest teeth and the perfect face. I envied her because all the guys loved her and yes, she was dark and beautiful. My only wish is that we can accept each other no matter what race or skin tone we are.

    Ultimately, we are not 100% “pure” anyway. My boyfriend at first glance looks straight African-American, but once you look at him closer, you can see his multi-racial background. He’s black, asian AND puerto-rican and I don’t love him any less. So once we have children and out of nowhere our child(ren) look like any of the nationalities above, I could careless because in the end, we are only one race and that’s the human race. Society needs to stop showcasing light and bright as the only level of beauty and no matter what shade we are we must love ourselves. Well in an ideal world I would hope for this…

  178. Nope not black. They called mixed people coloured in my country and its very clear if your mixed your coloured not black, not even by law. But coloured people are usually proud of all of their ancestors.

    IE, if you ask and if they can explain they usually tells you what they are. Xhosa (black), European, Malay etc…

    Oh btw I’ve added your link ^^

  179. Wow! Half Black equals not Black at all? Very interesting indeed. And, yes, men are usually more stern in their hatred in many ways, so it does not surprise me that you have experienced some mean men in regards to your children.

  180. Well. Women are curious for the most part. Men are down right mean.

    They have no problem telling me EXACTLY what they think mixing up our blood. Mixed race couples ain’t exactly common and the one drop rule does not exist there at all. Half black = not black in my country even if you look black.

    It’s true about the twin part. I’ve seen lots of example on the web.. TBH I find it so cute.

  181. Thanks for sharing. People can be really ridiculous, but some are just curious. When it comes to twins that are conceived through an “inter-racial” union your children’s appearance differences are really quite normal.

  182. I got the same “problem” really, My son is blond and have blue eyes. But his twin sister is darker and with curly brown hair.

    I have to say it was a bit of as shock for me, because I’m a very dark skinned 100% black woman. But my husband is Swedish and his genes really shines through.

    I don’t really get that many people who care about my children or me in Sweden, its mostly black people comes with stupid comments. But now when I brought my children to visit my home country of South Africa for the first time a few weeks ago. Oh boy. Everyone was staring at me, thinking I was just a domestic worker who brought her employees children to the township or kidnapped them or something.

    Heck if i did not say anything when they ask they would probably think they were albino instead of colored..

  183. I’m glad you found me. Thanks for sharing your story. It’s a shame that you have to pull out photos of your family for people. People of different backgrounds coming together and making babies is nothing new, and it is also nothing new for the children to look more White than Black or vice versa. Makes me sick!

  184. I cannot believe I came across this website. I suffer from the same nonsense. I’m black and my husband is white. I have two daughters, a son, and 7 months pregnant with a boy. My children look nothing like me, except for the almond-shaped eyes. They can easily pass for white. They have fine noses, thin lips, very pale skin, long wavy red hair, blueish/green eyes, and freckles. I get so furious when i’m with them, and my hubby isn’t with us. I live in upper Manhattan, NY, and people perceive me to be their nanny. I’m a dark complected woman, but my mom is multi-racial (Jewish/Irish/Kittitian) and she’s very fear with spiral red hair and freckles, and my dad is very dark (Bajan/Cherokee). I’m tired of explaining the reason my children look white. I have to literally, whip out my mom’s photo’s and family pictures for the clueless to understand. My husband tells me who cares what they think. These are our babies and that’s all that matters. But he can walk down the street with them without a question. I look like the nanny or a black woman stealing some white woman’s children. I’ve learned to ignore the questions, and the stares. Black comes in all shades. My children are living proof.

  185. Thanks for visiting. I’m sure if you Google “Interracial relationships”, “mixed children”, or other things of that nature many informative links will appear. Good luck!

  186. been visiting ur website for 3 days. absolutely love your posts. by the way i am doing report regarding this issue. do you know any other great sites or perhaps forums that I might learn more? many thanks.

  187. I still don’t understand why skin color is such an issue. It isn’t the color of your skin it is the color of your heart and that can be black. If you have a good heart then you are a good person. It is more how you are raised then what you look like. I have seen some very beautiful biracial people. I think it makes them unique.

  188. I’ve been living in Asia for three years so I find this interesting. I am curious to know what you think about dating Asian women, as far as how well they adjust to moving to a Western country. I’ve thought about bringing my Indonesian girlfriend back to Germany with me but I am not sure if she would adjust to the new environment. I’m wondering if anyone here has experience with dating Asian women overseas and bringing them to another country?

  189. Well, I’m actually curious to know how come I observe lots of Asian ladies dating white men nowadays, but I’ve rarely observed an Asian guy dating a white female. What is the reason for this?

  190. Thanks for your input. I agree that there are some tell tell features for many multi-ethnic people. I remember when Mariah Carey first came on the scene, people didn’t think she was Black. I also recall that many people were shocked when they found out Halle Berry has a White mother.

  191. I was watching prison break years ago during the first season of the show. I was a couple of episodes in and I was looking at Wentworth Miller and something just kind of clicked when I looked at his face and I thought “wait a minute, is he part black?” So I looked it up and found the results and I was right! Something about the size of his features, his nose and his mouth and even the shape of his head just looked black to me. So to answer your quesiton, yes I would definitely look at him and think that guy is black! Not so much with the straight hair pic, there is a pic of him on the web with natural afro hair.

    I hope there is html here but if not copy and paste the link and see.

  192. The comment “just because you’re my color doesn’t mean you’re my kind” was me as a Black woman saying that just because someone is also Black doesn’t mean that we can relate. I do see the context that you’re using it in and that is true also. Someone could have my skin tone and be Asian or Hispanic.

  193. Growing up I didn’t hear about “black and white” people, who’s who and the color issue some people have problems with. I think I can thanks my mother to that.

    Not until later when I got my first boyfriend, He was native american/african. It’s a sad story, but I experienced very close other peoples issues by us being together.

    One of our neighbors, who was white, had two children. One girl and a boy. The girl had blue eyes and blond hair. The boy had brown eyes, black hair and darker skin. I remember everyone thought that the boy weren’t their kid, or that the mother must have had an affair with someone from the middle east.

    The boy got nicknamed “pakistani”, although he was not.

    Thanks for the quote “Just because you’re my color it doesn’t mean you’re my kind.” That is so very true.

  194. For all the years I’ve known you, I didn’t know any details of your daughter’s dad. To be honest, I never thought much about it. She was your beautiful daughter and that was all that mattered.

    Now knowing that her father is white still doesn’t matter to me. Maybe I’m just too far out of the loop, because I think that any child raised with love will do fine. I wasn’t even aware of the dark skin/light skin issue until it was explained to me.

    I’ve thought a lot about why I spent a good part of my youth laying out in the sun to get tan. I think I believed it made me look healthier and more attractive. What does that all mean? Seriously.

    Michael Jackson is the father of his children, always has been and always will be. It would never matter to me if they were or weren’t biologically his.

    Many years ago I read a book called “Black Like Me” . It was shocking, appalling and very educational to me. Should be on the reading list of every human who doesn’t get the race issue.

    Very interesting topic girl.

    I’m going to shut up now.

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