What is the ethnic background of your parents?
My nickname in middle school became Chigger after school-mates learned that my mother is half Chinese and my dad is African American. Yet, Italian’s, American Indian’s, India-Indian’s, South American’s have all tried to “claim” me.
What type of colorism have you had to face and how did you deal with it?
My British West-Indian Calypso loving plantain frying grandmother stressed “hold your head high, get a good education, no one can take that from you and it’s the best remedy for ignorance.”
What do you think of the terms mixed, biracial, or mulatto?
I’m a biologist. I understand genetics. The phenotypes is what we see. Our genotype is what we ARE. Do NOT ask me to choose between my parents.
What do you have to say to people that think if you look White that you are not Black?
If your mixed – then you are mixed. Neither black nor white – I cannot conform to someone else’s limited view.
Anything else you`d like to add?
I’m actually writing a book titled Born a White Jew, Raised a Black Catholic My mother (1/2 German, !/2 Chinese) was raised in Brooklyn’s foster care system. She married my dad (1/2 African America, American Indian & Irish). They adopted me b/c they couldn’t have children. My birth mother is a Russian Jew & Birth father – “black” Though I was raised “black” the only tell tale sign is my authentic “junk in the trunk” behind.