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On the other thread Khaliqa asked me a few questions on being bi-racial, and being in an inter racial marriage. Since that thread was on a different topic I will move my answers here.

Khaliqa, I do consider myself black, and can never remember a time I self-identified as anything else. I can't remember a time when I ever wanted to be white.

From an academic standpoint, many sociologist state that race is determined by self-identification as well as those external to the "group" identifying you. Because race itself is an artificial construction and a fairly recent human phenemon used to create psychological, sociological and economic heiarchy, and reinforce group identity from some standpoints I can understand why a 'bi-racial' person chooses to disengage from blackness. I don't agree with them however.

I have always used the "Klan Test" as an analogy. If the Klan was coming down the street hanging black people, could Tiger Woods or any other 'mixed' person with pronounced black genetics mixed with another race be like, "Wait a minute, my mother is white, so I really am not black".

We are what we are, and we operate in an environment. Saying that that environment does not exist, does not make it not exist, and therefore for mixed people to disengage from blackness does not make them 'un-black' unless they really look white and can totally pass, and they don't self-identify with black. Figure this, since all folks came from Africa, where did the concept of white come from anyway?

This doesn't mean that I don't acknowledge my white heritage and family. It also doesn't mean that being half white didn't color my experience nor world view. But it is my identification with blackness that has being the primary shaper of me as a person and as an operator in this environment.
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From an academic standpoint, many sociologist state that race is determined by self-identification as well as those external to the "group" identifying you.---Dell Gines

I am always keenly interested in issues that impact on identity.

This interests me, because it is an interpretation of the system we live in.

I think that sociologists are not the originators of the definition of 'race', but rather are social engineers interpreting race.

Anthropologists and their sub-fields of ethnology and ethnography categorize, and identify groups of people.

Sociologist operate in the substrata of anthropology.

I sympathize with the child who is bi-racial.

I do not sympathize with the adult who is bi-racial.

The adult should have made that choice by time he/she reaches adulthood.

Children are told who they are.

In our society being 'bi-racial' means color of the individual is such that it is clearly apparent the person has parentage that is European in addition to his/her otherwise obvious minority parentage...in this discussion to mean African ancestry...maybe African American...maybe African national, or some other African-dominant society such as the nations of The Caribbean, Central and South America.

And I recognize those nations in the Western Hemisphere are (often) morely likely to be dominant with American Natives.

I am often reminded of Carol Channing's (of 'Hello Dolly' and 'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes' fame) late-in-life declaration that she is of African, and probably African American, ancestry.

And knew...who cared?

Obviously, she did...and her parent(s) did.


PEACE

Jim Chester
Hi Dell Gines. The issue with bi-racial children is very new. One thing that people don't consider when bringing up this issue is the race of the mother of the mixed ethnic person. Its new because there was a time that nearly 100% of children who were mixed in the black community had black mothers. Consequently these children were raised in the black community and their rearing was identified soley with the black parent.
The entire large scale notion of a mixed ethnic person is something that came about during the 1970's. It is mainly associated with someone who has a parent of African descent.
Speaking on the power of the black woman, it is she who is the first teacher of future black men and women. It's the reason that mixed ethnic people who have black mothers more closely associate with being black.
You can't really discuss the issue of how a person views themselves in life unless you discuss their first teacher, their mother.
Also as was stated in the thread that started this all, African culture, even this one in America is very matriarchal. Proof of which is what I just stated regarding the importance of the woman in shaping our people. But I'll save the rest of that for another thread on another day. Big Grin
I see the self identified bi-racial or multi-racial man or woman as having the not so unique perspective of not wanting to be Black. I say not so unique because there are millions of men and women who are black but choose to self identify as something other than Black or African. Bi-Racial children have never been thought of as anything other than Black, not because of the so-called one-drop rule but because of the social realities surrounding race in America and their appearance. They have never been mistaken for anything other than a Black man or woman thus to say they are not Black is their attempt at bringing their hope of not being associated with things commonly associated with being Black in America to a reality. Lets be honest here, we have many imitators and wannabee's but when it comes down to it, no one that is not Black wants to be Black and those with a chance of escaping being labeled Black usually will exercise that chance of theirs especially if it means a chance at acceptance.

Some of those who are bi-racial now say they self identify as bi-racial because they do not want to deny one side of who they are or deny one of their parents. Who can argue with that? But you see in this society we have many rules regarding how we identify ourselves that does not say to those whom we are identifying ourselves to that we are denying one side of who we are. A simple example is; children usually take on the fathers last name, not to deny his or her mother, but due to some patriarchal tradition. What about children born to parents of different faiths, when they choose a faith of one of their parents is that not a denial of the other parent being that so many of us associate our faith with whom we are and it dictates our behavior. The reality is that when so-called bi-racial children are born their genetics denied one of their parents based on strength in genes and being born into a society that identify us based on features born out of those genes simply seals the deal. Therefore, some arbitrary self identification after the fact must have a purpose other than to not deny one side of the family and I conclude the only reason is to not be Black and be associated with the history of Black people and present day realities of Black folk in America and the Disapora.
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Originally posted by Faheem:
I see the self identified bi-racial or multi-racial man or woman as having the not so unique perspective of not wanting to be Black. I say not so unique because there are millions of men and women who are black but choose to self identify as something other than Black or African. Bi-Racial children have never been thought of as anything other than Black, not because of the so-called one-drop rule but because of the social realities surrounding race in America and their appearance. They have never been mistaken for anything other than a Black man or woman thus to say they are not Black is their attempt at bringing their hope of not being associated with things commonly associated with being Black in America to a reality. Lets be honest here, we have many imitators and wannabee's but when it comes down to it, no one that is not Black wants to be Black and those with a chance of escaping being labeled Black usually will exercise that chance of theirs especially if it means a chance at acceptance.


Funny you should say that. I for one do not consider Biracial people to be Black (that's not an insult, I just don't) nor do I consider them to be White either. Regardless of how Black they may look, genetically they are still half-White. Just like I wouldn't consider an Arab to be White no matter how light-skinned they are and how European their nose looks.

As for Biracial people's apperances, many of them look closer to Black than White only because Black features are genetically dominant over White features. Just like brunette hair is a dominant genetic trait over blond hair, a blond parent and a brunette parent would most likely have a kid with hair closer to brown than blond. But I've seen many Biracial people who look closer to White than Black and I've seen ones who about like an even mix of both. Just like I've seen Black people who could pass for White but have two fully Black parents and White people who are dark enough to be mistaken for Arab or Hispanic but are fully White.

Race shouldn't be simplified to such 19th century classifications. But I fully understand your point about the reality of race as a social construct. Biracial people who are raised almost fully in Black culture (which seems to be the majority of them) are culturally Black, but I don't think that is enough to consider them to be as Black as you and me. Blackness is more than just a culture or upbringing IMHO. Otherwise so-called "wiggers" could be considered "Black".
Faheem, I know many biracial people, and I can't name one that has ever said they didn't want to be 'black' and this includes my four brothers and sisters. All told, I probably know around 20 biracial folks if not more, and never once have any of them self identified with anything other than being black.

Now, obviously anecdotal evidence is somewhat arbitrary, but it is something to consider. In college I did have discussions with biracial folks who didn't want to be defined as 'solely' black, but this was as you suggest representative of the fact that they didn't want to be perceived as rejecting part of their heritage, as opposed to any desire not to be black. To me those are two different issues.

Purnata, what do you define as authentically black?

Were these individuals "real" black to you?

Booker T Washington
Frederick Douglas
WEB Dubois
Crispus Attucks
Malcolm X

All of them has at least 1/8 at most more than 1/2 of white heritage

Which one of these guys is really black to you?

Huey Newton


or

Marcus Garvey


How about Muhammed Ali?

What about these folks?

"About 30% of black Americans who take DNA tests to determine their African lineage prove to be descended from Europeans on their father's side, says Rick Kittles, scientific director of African Ancestry, a Washington, D.C., company that began offering the tests in 2003. Almost all black Americans whom Kittles has tested descended from African women, he says."

http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2006-02-01-dna-tests_x.htm
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Speaking on the power of the black woman, it is she who is the first teacher of future black men and women. It's the reason that mixed ethnic people who have black mothers more closely associate with being black.


Yemaya, I can only counter this argument through anecdotal evidence and observation. The biracial people I know most likely to 'not' identify as black are those with black mothers and white fathers.

Historically it would have been different because many more of the biracial pregnancies would have been the product of coerce.
This may have been addressed here before, but . . . if "bi-racial" folks aren't black - despite appearances and self-identification, then since the majority of African Americans have some white blood in them - who, precisely, among us is really black?

A couple of great great great grandfathers of mine were white. Am I black? 19 Confused Eek

PS - if you can, listen in to the interview tonight with Walter Benn Michaels on AfricanAmerica.org Radio. He argues against the notion of race completely. It'll be an interesting discussion. Tonight at 9PM Eastern.
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Originally posted by MBM:
This may have been addressed here before, but . . . if "bi-racial" folks aren't black - despite appearances and self-identification, then since the majority of African Americans have some white blood in them - who, precisely, among us is really black?

A couple of great great great grandfathers of mine were white. Am I black? 19 Confused Eek


Like I said, I consider a person to be Black if they are 51% Black or more. Just like vanilla and chocolate equals a chocholatey mix if there is slightly more chocolate than vanilla. And vice versa. A Black person being 1/8, 1/16, 1/32 etc. White isn't enough to make them non-Black in my book.
quote:
Originally posted by Empty Purnata:

Like I said, I consider a person to be Black if they are 51% Black or more. Just like vanilla and chocolate equals a chocholatey mix if there if there is slightly more chocolate than vanilla. And vice versa. A Black person being 1/8, 1/16, 1/32 etc. White isn't enough to make them non-Black in my book.


Again, I apologize if we're discussing ground already covered here, but why the stringent requirement? If black folks can even joke about Bill Clinton being the first black president, but someone who is 50% black and looks like us, talks like us, walks like us etc. - is somehow white? Confused
quote:
Originally posted by MBM:
quote:
Originally posted by Empty Purnata:

Like I said, I consider a person to be Black if they are 51% Black or more. Just like vanilla and chocolate equals a chocholatey mix if there if there is slightly more chocolate than vanilla. And vice versa. A Black person being 1/8, 1/16, 1/32 etc. White isn't enough to make them non-Black in my book.


Again, I apologize if we're discussing ground already covered here, but why the stringent requirement? If black folks can even joke about Bill Clinton being the first black president, but someone who is 50% black and looks like us, talks like us, walks like us etc. - is somehow white? Confused


I'm just talking about it from a scientific genetics perspective. I wasn't talking about the cultural aspect (yet). Culturally, most Biracial people are "Black" because they are raised mostly in Black culture.

I have a question, why are some Black people so eager to bring Biracial people under the umbrella of Blackness? I ask this because I have a feeling it might be the same reason some Black people dote over light-skinned Black people with Native American heritage that causes them to have naturally straight hair. Are some of us so eager to claim them as Black so we can have some less Black-looking Black people to put on a pedestal?
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Originally posted by Empty Purnata:
quote:
Originally posted by MBM:
quote:
Originally posted by Empty Purnata:

Like I said, I consider a person to be Black if they are 51% Black or more. Just like vanilla and chocolate equals a chocholatey mix if there if there is slightly more chocolate than vanilla. And vice versa. A Black person being 1/8, 1/16, 1/32 etc. White isn't enough to make them non-Black in my book.


Again, I apologize if we're discussing ground already covered here, but why the stringent requirement? If black folks can even joke about Bill Clinton being the first black president, but someone who is 50% black and looks like us, talks like us, walks like us etc. - is somehow white? Confused


I'm just talking about it from a scientific genetics perspective. I wasn't talking about the cultural aspect (yet). Culturally, most Biracial people are "Black" because they are raised mostly in Black culture.

I have a question, why are some Black people so eager to bring Biracial people under the umbrella of Blackness? I ask this because I have a feeling it might be the same reason some Black people dote over light-skinned Black people with Native American heritage that causes them to have naturally straight hair. Are some of us so eager to claim them as Black so we can have some less Black-looking Black people to put on a pedestal?

Sorry EP,
I am usually down with you, but this seems beyond odd to me. Firstly, you have already said that you reject the 19th century notion of race as biological, and that it is a social construct. So then where are these ratio's coming from. Moreover, what are black genes, and what are white genes? Folks have been moving around and getting busy with each other for millennia.

I do agree, however, that being black is more than strictly cultural. It is also existential. This in part may be due to features or complexion. This is what Franz Fanon is talking about when he talks about the educated Algerian in Paris whose speech, dress, mannerism are impeccably French, but he is undone when the child says "look, a Negro!", and everyone turns and stares at him. It is that experience that a "wigger" does not have, but my bi-racial niece experienced in rural Kentucky when she was not allowed to play on the peewee soccer team.

To say that something is not scientific, but rather social or existential is not saying that it does not exist. This is where I disagree with some theorists or pundits. Race exists, and as a concept/construct, it exerts an incredible amount of power in our society, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.
quote:
Originally posted by Dell Gines:
Faheem, I know many biracial people, and I can't name one that has ever said they didn't want to be 'black' and this includes my four brothers and sisters. All told, I probably know around 20 biracial folks if not more, and never once have any of them self identified with anything other than being black.

Now, obviously anecdotal evidence is somewhat arbitrary, but it is something to consider. In college I did have discussions with biracial folks who didn't want to be defined as 'solely' black, but this was as you suggest representative of the fact that they didn't want to be perceived as rejecting part of their heritage, as opposed to any desire not to be black. To me those are two different issues.



Dell,

One cannot self-Identify as Black and Biracial thus my comments were about those who only self identify as Biracial or multi-racial. In addition, we can make our mouths say anything especially when that something is to our benefit. One can claim that their reasoning behind self-identifying as bi-racial is to claim both of their parents race, that sounds good in theory, but when put under the societal microscope and up against the historical realities of race in America, it is easy to discern why one would choose to be bi-racial rather than Black. This bi-racial identification did not come about because children were being seen as White; it came about because they were being seen as Black in a country where being Black can count against you. Thus, I stand by my previous statement, those who claim to be bi-racial do so to not be seen as Black and associated with what that entails.

Race is the only phenomena under which you will witness men and women trying to identify with something that encompasses both of their parents, as if they are trying to honor their parents. There is no white or black parent on record claiming their mixed race child self-identifying as black disrespects them or their spouse, if it is the spouse who is white. This is why I do not buy the bi-racial argument that says they want to claim both of their parents.

Dell have your mother ever felt disrespected because you self identify as a Black man... I am betting she has not because she understands race in America as all folks that enter into an IRR should.
Empty Purnata

You will always find yourself at odds with folk when you try to define who is Black and who is not, even if it is your own way of looking at it and not one you are trying to force on other men and women.

For me, I define a Black person as follow. Any one of Black African descent that self identify as Black and their children until they are of age to self identify as what they choose. We cannot force Blackness on anyone, nor can we take it away from anyone of African Descent that self identify as Black. So if someone who is clearly Black do not want to self identify as Black, so be it, and if someone who has one Black Parent chooses to self identify as Black than so be it. It is all about self-identification, even when the truth of what they are is obvious.

Lastly, clearly there are instances like in politics where it can be said that one is not Black, Politically, even when they self identify as Black because their politics fall outside the mainstream thought of Black men and women and inline with the mainstream thought of White folk In America. I.E most if not all Negro-Cons.
quote:
Culturally, most Biracial people are "Black" because they are raised mostly in Black culture.



One of my favorite books is Life on the Color Line: The True Story of a White Boy Who Discovered He Was Black. I read it a second time for a class I took a few years ago. The author Gregory Williams was invited to discuss it.

When a white student asked, "So, what do you consider yourself?" without hesitation Williams answered "African American."

Here's a picture of the author.
quote:
Originally posted by kresge:
quote:
Originally posted by Empty Purnata:
quote:
Originally posted by MBM:
quote:
Originally posted by Empty Purnata:

Like I said, I consider a person to be Black if they are 51% Black or more. Just like vanilla and chocolate equals a chocholatey mix if there if there is slightly more chocolate than vanilla. And vice versa. A Black person being 1/8, 1/16, 1/32 etc. White isn't enough to make them non-Black in my book.


Again, I apologize if we're discussing ground already covered here, but why the stringent requirement? If black folks can even joke about Bill Clinton being the first black president, but someone who is 50% black and looks like us, talks like us, walks like us etc. - is somehow white? Confused


I'm just talking about it from a scientific genetics perspective. I wasn't talking about the cultural aspect (yet). Culturally, most Biracial people are "Black" because they are raised mostly in Black culture.

I have a question, why are some Black people so eager to bring Biracial people under the umbrella of Blackness? I ask this because I have a feeling it might be the same reason some Black people dote over light-skinned Black people with Native American heritage that causes them to have naturally straight hair. Are some of us so eager to claim them as Black so we can have some less Black-looking Black people to put on a pedestal?

Sorry EP,
I am usually down with you, but this seems beyond odd to me. Firstly, you have already said that you reject the 19th century notion of race as biological, and that it is a social construct. So then where are these ratio's coming from. Moreover, what are black genes, and what are white genes? Folks have been moving around and getting busy with each other for millennia.


Black and White are not races, that is true. But we do have some different genes that are particular to whatever our ethnicity is. That's why I was talking about genetic ratios.

But if you believe that race does not exist as anything but a social construct (which I would agree with mostly), then would you consider a Biracial person to be White if they consider themself White? If not, why not?

quote:
I do agree, however, that being black is more than strictly cultural. It is also existential. This in part may be due to features or complexion. This is what Franz Fanon is talking about when he talks about the educated Algerian in Paris whose speech, dress, mannerism are impeccably French, but he is undone when the child says "look, a Negro!", and everyone turns and stares at him. It is that experience that a "wigger" does not have, but my bi-racial niece experienced in rural Kentucky when she was not allowed to play on the peewee soccer team.


So, we should let the reaction of White people define race? We should define people as Black simply because White people call them a Negro? Confused

You see how much racial identity hinges on the judgements of White people? I remember this Jewish White kid back in high school who continually called this kid of Egyptian descent "Black" because he considered Arabs to be Black. Now if a lot of other White people start thinking like him, should we consider Arabs Black simply because Arabs are Negroes in the minds of White people?

quote:
To say that something is not scientific, but rather social or existential is not saying that it does not exist. This is where I disagree with some theorists or pundits. Race exists, and as a concept/construct, it exerts an incredible amount of power in our society, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.


I never said that race exists genetically. Ethnicity has genetic markers but not something called "race". The only human race in current existence is Homo-sapien. At least as far as we know. However, different Homo-sapiens have differing genetic traits. For instance, it is possible to tell a Kenyan man from a Swedish man by a few traits in his genome. Even though the difference is very, very, very slight.

If race does not exist, a Bircial person should be just as able to call themselves White as Black. Even though you say you don't believe in race, I sense a one-drop mindset in effect here. If not a genetic racial one-drop rule than a social racial one-drop rule.
quote:
Originally posted by Faheem:
Empty Purnata

You will always find yourself at odds with folk when you try to define who is Black and who is not, even if it is your own way of looking at it and not one you are trying to force on other men and women.

For me, I define a Black person as follow. Any one of Black African descent that self identify as Black and their children until they are of age to self identify as what they choose. We cannot force Blackness on anyone, nor can we take it away from anyone of African Descent that self identify as Black. So if someone who is clearly Black do not want to self identify as Black, so be it, and if someone who has one Black Parent chooses to self identify as Black than so be it. It is all about self-identification, even when the truth of what they are is obvious.


Let's say a person is 31/32 White and 1/32 Black, looks totally White but considers themself Black because they were raised by Black parents. Would you consider that person Black?

If not, why not? What is the difference between them and a Biracial person?

quote:
Lastly, clearly there are instances like in politics where it can be said that one is not Black, Politically, even when they self identify as Black because their politics fall outside the mainstream thought of Black men and women and inline with the mainstream thought of White folk In America. I.E most if not all Negro-Cons.


I agree. lol
Excellent posts!!!

All these posts are saying essentially the person is the determiner of a person's social identity.

But, in the end, it is society which dictates.

The pressure of society is what drives the decieion-making of the person who declares 'bi-raciality'...if there is such a word.

kresge's example of the 'educated Algerian' who practiced all the behaviors of a 'good Frenchman'.

I am a believer that parents determine who their children are.

Children may then change their minds, but such a change is the result of social pressures...and personal desires.

As the man told me when I concluded he was an African American, because of his grandmother, 'Historically.'

In the end, you are who you say you are.

PEACE

Jim Chester
In reality "bi-racialism" formerly known in America as miscegenation falls under the rubric of the "politics of identification." African Americans who are "light skinned" and "hazel eyed" who were raised in white communities or in the white milieu and have adopted what blacks perceive as "white ways of thinking and acting," - are typically treated by whites as white. John McWhorter (the author of Losing The Race) as well as Juan Williams both a good case in point. Yet, in 2007 Negroes such as Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, Secretary of State Condelezza Rice and journalist Armstrong Williams, for whom all are dark skinned but nonetheless viewed by their white colleagues as "white Negroes." Light skinned blacks who are raised in the black community tend to adopt the culture of "blackness," i.e., in their dress, language and cultural habits that whites associate with blackness. These "light skinned" black raised African Americans are identified and treated by the white community as black persons, (Louis Farrakhan is a perfect example).

For those African Americans who are dark skinned (like me), many have genes, chromosomes and DNA that point directly to Native American heritage. Yet it amazes me that African Americans for whom their blood has been mixed with Europeans, southern whites and Native Americans still claim to be African! I would bet any African American person at African American. Org, that if their blood was tested against that of a Zulu, Bantu, Botswanian or Hottentot, - that not as much as one drop of African American blood would register as African! Moreover, for the African American "bi-racial" folks I would double the bet based on the fact that irrespective of some outstanding Negroid features, their blood would register as predominately white or European.

Sorry folks but 300 years of West African slave trading created an entirely new African prototype race of people for whom today - outside of skin color and place of origin are either unconditionally American or nothing! Why then do so many posters continue to post the question "are African Americans African - over and over again? The answer is yes, but only in our conscious, nowhere else!
quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
I would bet any African American person at African American. Org, that if their blood was tested against that of a Zulu, Bantu, Botswanian or Hottentot, - that not as much as one drop of African American blood would register as African!


Zulus are a Bantu ethnic group, Bantu is a language group that stretches all across the African continent incuding West Africa. So it is illogical to mention 'Zulu and/or Bantu' as if they are something different. Botswanian is a nationality with different internal ethnic groups. 'Hottentot' is a derogetory term for the Khiosan people(bushmen) of Southern Africa which BTW the racist scientific community already categorized as genetically 'caucazoid' like they did with Dravidians and Australian Aboriginals. Not that they treated them any better during the apartheid era, or the others during colonialism...Go figure that one out!


The only thing the African people in Amerikkka are predominantly is of Bantu origin. Every other people you mentioned have NOTHING to do with the origin of people in the diaspora because they were not part of the trans-atlantic slave trade. So your entire basis of comparing our genes to theirs is irrational. Khoisan, Zulu, and Botswanian people are not in West/Central Africa, they are in Southern Africa! If you are going to make genetic comparisons and spew more anti-African rhetoric please make it at least somewhat plausible.

If you are really stupid enough to think that people with phenotypically dominant African features won't test to have African DNA(not blood genius) you are more of a self hating idoit than I thought. The PBS special "African American Lives" which tested Oprah Winfrey, Chris Tucker, Dr. Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot, Quincy Jones, T.D. Jakes, Whoopi Goldberg, Benjamin Carson Sr., Mae C. Jemison, and Henry Louis Gates Jr., proved you wrong already, I would suggest you check it out. All of the folks who thought they had Native Amerikkkan ancestry were WRONG. I have several friends who have tested as predominantly Yoruba already... One has green eyes and speaks Choctaw!

quote:
Moreover, for the African American "bi-racial" folks I would double the bet based on the fact that irrespective of some outstanding Negroid features, their blood would register as predominately white or European.


Been tested, not the case... Turns out my mother had some genetic stuff going on she wasn't aware of. I guess that's not a factor in your logic though, that many people classified as strictly/purely 'white' may be mis-lead.

quote:
Sorry folks but 300 years of West African slave trading created an entirely new African prototype race of people for whom today - outside of skin color and place of origin are either unconditionally American or nothing! Why then do so many posters continue to post the question "are African Americans African - over and over again? The answer is yes, but only in our conscious, nowhere else!


You must really hate what you see in the mirror everyday. There is no Amerikkkan 'race'. What's sad is I probably layed eyes on your phenotypical twin when I was in Africa...

BTW, your post completely dismisses or doesn't adress the FACT that race is mainly a socio-political construct. In which case we are definately AFRICAN. No matter how much people run from it.
If you are biracial, then you should be considered biracial, not black.

I've never understood the one drop rule, and actually find it insulting when someone like Halle Berry is considered to be a black woman and is representing black women. How can Halle Berry represent black women with *two* black parents when her mother is indeed a white woman? I'm sorry, but that has always rubbed me the wrong way. I would like black women to represent themselves and not be misrepresented.

BUT, if Halle and other biracial wish to identify with the black community, then that is their right to do so. However, I rather have them not be the fore fronters of the black community. Too many times have mixed people spoked for black people, and I resent this. And no, I'm not jealous of mixed people or anything like that but, why is a half white person represented me, a person with two black parents? That isn't right. Not at all.
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Let's say a person is 31/32 White and 1/32 Black, looks totally White but considers themself Black because they were raised by Black parents. Would you consider that person Black?

If not, why not? What is the difference between them and a Biracial person?


I have no idea, how you would know that one is 31/32 white and 1/32 Black. Does the 32 represent the number of African people removed that individual represent? I would imagine someone like that may look like Danny Bakewell the activist out of Los Angeles who when seen in passing is easily thought of as a white man, but he will tell you in a minute that he is Black. So if that is the case and the person uses that 1/32 of their African identity to self identify as African then how can anyone deny him or her that, especially considering you already said the person was raised by African parents in an African community. If the reverse was true, meaning the person was raised in a White home and self-identified as white, I would not say he or she is an African.

The problem with answering hypothetical questions is, for the most part they have no real world existence thus no matter what I answer the answer is a hypothetical response.
quote:
Originally posted by Stranger:
If you are biracial, then you should be considered biracial, not black.

I've never understood the one drop rule, and actually find it insulting when someone like Halle Berry is considered to be a black woman and is representing black women. How can Halle Berry represent black women with *two* black parents when her mother is indeed a white woman? I'm sorry, but that has always rubbed me the wrong way. I would like black women to represent themselves and not be misrepresented.

BUT, if Halle and other biracial wish to identify with the black community, then that is their right to do so. However, I rather have them not be the fore fronters of the black community. Too many times have mixed people spoked for black people, and I resent this. And no, I'm not jealous of mixed people or anything like that but, why is a half white person represented me, a person with two black parents? That isn't right. Not at all.


What you are adressing is colourism. This is a very important, much neglected issue. I totally agree with what you have stated.
quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
In reality "bi-racialism" formerly known in America as miscegenation falls under the rubric of the "politics of identification." African Americans who are "light skinned" and "hazel eyed" who were raised in white communities or in the white milieu and have adopted what blacks perceive as "white ways of thinking and acting," - are typically treated by whites as white.


Uh...NO THEY ARE NOT! Colin Powell, despite his light skin and "keen features" is still viewed as a BLACK man by white people. Condi Rice, a BLACK woman with TWO black parents is still seen as a BLACK woman by white people.

And there is no such thing as "thinking" white or "acting" white. Are you serious? That is SO ignorant. How does one "act" white? How does one "think" white?

quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
John McWhorter (the author of Losing The Race) as well as Juan Williams both a good case in point. Yet, in 2007 Negroes such as Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, Secretary of State Condelezza Rice and journalist Armstrong Williams, for whom all are dark skinned but nonetheless viewed by their white colleagues as "white Negroes."


No. They are seen as EDUCATED black people, NOT white negroes. If anything, it is BLACK people who view Condi and Clarence Thomas as "Uncle Toms/Aunt Bettys."

quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
Light skinned blacks who are raised in the black community tend to adopt the culture of "blackness," i.e., in their dress, language and cultural habits that whites associate with blackness. These "light skinned" black raised African Americans are identified and treated by the white community as black persons, (Louis Farrakhan is a perfect example).


B.S. A black is a black person in a white person's mind. They don't care how light you are, or how "keen" your features are. Even Lena Horne could barely escape their wrath of hatred and racism. Did you know that many of her scenes in movies were edited by white producers to ease the racist white audience, back in the day?

quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
For those African Americans who are dark skinned (like me), many have genes, chromosomes and DNA that point directly to Native American heritage. Yet it amazes me that African Americans for whom their blood has been mixed with Europeans, southern whites and Native Americans still claim to be African!


Uh...why wouldn't they? The last time I checked, the average AA is 80-83% African with 17-20% admixture. Not much to speak of, now is it?

Hell, my mother is 1/4 European and 1/8 Native American and my father is 1/4 Native American, but guess what? They are still seen as black/African in the society and have mostly African ancestry. They identify with the black community as well.

quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
I would bet any African American person at African American. Org, that if their blood was tested against that of a Zulu, Bantu, Botswanian or Hottentot, - that not as much as one drop of African American blood would register as African!


I don't know WHAT you are talking about, but someone mentioned the PBS special of Oprah, Henry Louis Gates, Quincy Jones, etc. Oprah found out that she was 89% African, Henry Louis founded out that he was 50% African, Chris Tucker founded out that he was 83% African, Whoopi Goldberg was 90% African, Mae Jeminson was 79% African and Quincy was 66%. As you can see, there is a huge variety of admixtures, but for them most part, the celebrities were around 80% African.

And at any rate, all of the places/tribes you mentioned weren't taken to America. I've read articles on places where Africans were taken from and where people have traced their roots back to:
Cameroon
Angola
Ghana
Nigeria
Sierra Leon
Mozambique
Liberia
Sudan* (surprise!)
Guinea
Mali
Mauritania
Togo
Benin
Egypt* (surprise! Henry Louis found out that he had some weak tides to Egypt. WTF? Shocker.)
Congo
Gambia
Gabon


quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
Moreover, for the African American "bi-racial" folks I would double the bet based on the fact that irrespective of some outstanding Negroid features, their blood would register as predominately white or European.


Probably so. But I would bet you that the average biracial person is 40-43% African, some maybe even closer to 50%.

quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
Sorry folks but 300 years of West African slave trading created an entirely new African prototype race of people for whom today - outside of skin color and place of origin are either unconditionally American or nothing! Why then do so many posters continue to post the question "are African Americans African - over and over again? The answer is yes, but only in our conscious, nowhere else!


African-Americans ARE African, and predominately so. I don't know why you are trying to lessen the connection when it should be strenghtened.
quote:
Originally posted by Oshun Auset:
quote:
Originally posted by Stranger:
If you are biracial, then you should be considered biracial, not black.

I've never understood the one drop rule, and actually find it insulting when someone like Halle Berry is considered to be a black woman and is representing black women. How can Halle Berry represent black women with *two* black parents when her mother is indeed a white woman? I'm sorry, but that has always rubbed me the wrong way. I would like black women to represent themselves and not be misrepresented.

BUT, if Halle and other biracial wish to identify with the black community, then that is their right to do so. However, I rather have them not be the fore fronters of the black community. Too many times have mixed people spoked for black people, and I resent this. And no, I'm not jealous of mixed people or anything like that but, why is a half white person represented me, a person with two black parents? That isn't right. Not at all.


What you are adressing is colourism. This is a very important, much neglected issue. I totally agree with what you have stated.


Sadly true. Colorism is a BIG issue in black America when it shouldn't be. In the end, to me, black is black. Light, dark, in between, etc. I see Janet Jackson, Beyonce, Iman, Alek Wek, India Arie, Kelly Rowland, etc, as black women and T.I., Wesley Snipes, Isaiah Washington, Cuba Gooding Jr. as black men, even though they are all different shades.

Colorism is so divisive, and should be killed in the black community. We are all brothas and sistas, who are going through the same garbage every single day.
quote:
Originally posted by Dell Gines:

I have always used the "Klan Test" as an analogy. If the Klan was coming down the street hanging black people, could Tiger Woods or any other 'mixed' person with pronounced black genetics mixed with another race be like, "Wait a minute, my mother is white, so I really am not black".


I understand where you are coming from, but why allow idiots like the KKK dictate how you view yourself? And at any rate, according to Tiger Woods, he is only 1/4 African.


quote:
Originally posted by Dell Gines:This doesn't mean that I don't acknowledge my white heritage and family. It also doesn't mean that being half white didn't color my experience nor world view. But it is my identification with blackness that has being the primary shaper of me as a person and as an operator in this environment.


Only in the U.S. would you be viewed as "just black." Anywhere else, you would be view as what you are...multi-ethnic. In South America, you would be put in a "mulatto/biracial" category easily, same in the Carribeans, Europe, AFRICA, etc. I can't understood why North America won't get with the program.
quote:
Sorry folks but 300 years of West African slave trading created an entirely new African prototype race of people for whom today - outside of skin color and place of origin are either unconditionally American or nothing! Why then do so many posters continue to post the question "are African Americans African - over and over again? The answer is yes, but only in our conscious, nowhere else!


Kraal I 100% agree.

Faheem -

"One cannot self-Identify as Black and Biracial thus my comments were about those who only self identify as Biracial or multi-racial. In addition, we can make our mouths say anything especially when that something is to our benefit. One can claim that their reasoning behind self-identifying as bi-racial is to claim both of their parents race, that sounds good in theory, but when put under the societal microscope and up against the historical realities of race in America, it is easy to discern why one would choose to be bi-racial rather than Black. This bi-racial identification did not come about because children were being seen as White; it came about because they were being seen as Black in a country where being Black can count against you. Thus, I stand by my previous statement, those who claim to be bi-racial do so to not be seen as Black and associated with what that entails."

I sort of agree with where you are coming from if you are stating that 'self-identification' is mutually exclusive, IE you can't identify as both bi-racial and black.

In terms of my mother, no she has never gotten upset.
Stranger, the other "system" as you put it isn't flawless either. Many coloristic caste systems are well defined in other parts of the world with 'multi-ethnic' definitions.

I 100% agree with you though that the race polarity is strongly a North America thing.

In terms of the Klan test, I simply use that as an analogy that simply because you believe you aren't something doesn't mean that people don't define you as that. Some will say "you shouldn't let others define you" and that is true to a degree, but we do not operate in a vacuum, and peoples external perceptions effect our environment so it is a condition of what we call "race".
quote:
Originally posted by Dell Gines:
Stranger, the other "system" as you put it isn't flawless either. Many coloristic caste systems are well defined in other parts of the world with 'multi-ethnic' definitions.


Oh, I'm not going to lie. South America's racial classification isn't perfect either. BUT, it allows people who are multi-ethnic to identify more freely with whatever they want. Maybe a bit too freely. I have heard people who look like Naomi Campbell and Wesley Snipes identify as "mulatto/biracial" and at times even "white!" :0

Many South Americans feel that if you have a drop of European blood, then you are automatically "mixed." If Lauryn Hill was to say that her great-great grandfather was white, she would be viewed as "mixed" in South America, which I don't agree.

But, South America encourages multi-ethnic people such as yourself to identify as multi-ethnic, unlike the U.S. that wouldn't see you as such. That is why I lean more towards South America's "race classifications" than I do with the U.S.'s.



quote:
Originally posted by Dell Gines:
In terms of the Klan test, I simply use that as an analogy that simply because you believe you aren't something doesn't mean that people don't define you as that. Some will say "you shouldn't let others define you" and that is true to a degree, but we do not operate in a vacuum, and peoples external perceptions effect our environment so it is a condition of what we call "race".


True. Very true.
quote:


Sorry folks but 300 years of West African slave trading created an entirely new African prototype race of people for whom today - outside of skin color and place of origin are either unconditionally American or nothing!


1. Curious that America doesn't consider us wholly "American", yet we're supposed to? 19

2. Aren't physical characteristics and geographic unity (along with common cultural practices) the most important "definers" of a people? You seem to acknowledge a connection to Africa yet disavow it all in the same sentence. sck

3. Just because the slave trade created something of an ethnic bouillabaisse for our people does not in any way suggest that our connection to Africa is somehow any less real. If I put a bunch of fruit together in a blender, the blended output may look different from the original pieces, but the material, the DNA, the matter itself certainly remains the same.

quote:
Why then do so many posters continue to post the question "are African Americans African - over and over again? The answer is yes, but only in our conscious, nowhere else!


Actually - if not in our "conscious" - where else would one's identity lie? Beyond that, doesn't straight DNA analysis render your position moot?

I look black. I exude African American culture. And, oh, by the way, my DNA shows my African lineage. What more is there to say? Confused
quote:
Originally posted by Dell Gines:
In terms of the Klan test, I simply use that as an analogy that simply because you believe you aren't something doesn't mean that people don't define you as that. Some will say "you shouldn't let others define you" and that is true to a degree, but we do not operate in a vacuum, and peoples external perceptions effect our environment so it is a condition of what we call "race".


Speaking of the "Klan test" what about tests created out of intra-racial strife like the brown paper bag test or the comb test where the amount of white blood (reflected in the color of one's skin or the texture of one's hair) determined whether you were worthy of admission to elite social clubs, churches, sororities, fraternities, etc.
quote:
Originally posted by Santana St. Cloud:
quote:
Originally posted by Dell Gines:
In terms of the Klan test, I simply use that as an analogy that simply because you believe you aren't something doesn't mean that people don't define you as that. Some will say "you shouldn't let others define you" and that is true to a degree, but we do not operate in a vacuum, and peoples external perceptions effect our environment so it is a condition of what we call "race".


Speaking of the "Klan test" what about tests created out of intra-racial strife like the brown paper bag test or the comb test where the amount of white blood (reflected in the color of one's skin or the texture of one's hair) determined whether you were worthy of admission to elite social clubs, churches, sororities, fraternities, etc.


Institutionalized colourism.
Listen up Oshun !

I am an honorably discharged Vietnam Vet, I put my blackass on the line and fought for America not AFRICA!! I don't give a sh!t how much whitey, the Klan, Aryan nation or any other red neck racist hates me, I will fight and die to remain American not AFRICAN!!!

Maybe YOU fight Africa's wars
Maybe you eat and sleep in Africa
Maybe your wife and children are African


Kraal does not speak African
I don't dress African
My culture is American.
I owe Africa NOTHING and Africa owes me NOTHING!
I pay my taxes in America NOT AFRICA!!
My sons are born American not AFRICAN!

You can call me what the fu(k you want, I'm still an American entitled to all the rights of any other American. And while YOU hug Africa my work and my sons work as well as my grand sons remains HERE in America fighting the same idiot bastards as my American forefathers – those who wanted to deny what is owed to all African Americans, - an opportunity to live the so-called "American dream" NOT AN AFRICAN REPATRIATION DREAM!!!!

I know where the fu(k I come from Oshun, I don't NEED YOU to tell me

You think just because my skin is black I OWE SOMETHING TO AFRICA! If that is what you think then YOU Oshun are the fool!!

LISTEN UP, I OWE AFRICA NOTHING!!!!

OSHUN, IF YOU ARE NOT IN Africa, I suggest you take your arse there RIGHT NOW and while you are there maybe you can join the Angolan Rebels or do some work in Darfar or help Africa with its AIDS crises. In this way you can better focus on Africa rather than wasting your damm time talking to what YOU describe as ANTI-AFRICAN niggers like kraal!

I don't care or give a damm what you say Oshun, WEST AFRICA SOLD ME and millions like me the same way as the white man sells his cattle!!!!!. I had no choice but to be an American.

And so it is what it is!! Africa for the Africans
America for Americans, - it is what it is!!

Let me tell you something Oshun, - there is no amount, no degree no intensity of hate or racism that white folk can perpetrate that will ever cause me to deny my Americanism!!!!! Did you HEAR ME Oshun

I AM AN AMERICAN! I only come from Africa. I am an American created from the greed and averice of your beloved West African slave raiders!!!!

So what does Africa mean to a Nig like kraal?
Since emancipation what has Africa done for American blacks?

Let me answer for you Oshun , - NOTHING!!!!

This is precisely why my work is here, NOT IN AFRICA!!!


End of Story Oshun!!!
quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
Kraal does not speak African
I don't dress African
My culture is American.
I owe Africa NOTHING and Africa owes me NOTHING!
I pay my taxes in America NOT AFRICA!!
My sons are born American not AFRICAN!


But technically...you have African ancestry, right?
You can be both African AND American. But it's fine if you don't identify with Africa. It is your choice.

quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:You can call me what the fu(k you want, I'm still an American entitled to all the rights of any other American. And while YOU hug Africa my work and my sons work as well as my grand sons remains HERE in America fighting the same idiot bastards as my American forefathers – those who wanted to deny what is owed to all African Americans, - an opportunity to live the so-called "American dream" NOT AN AFRICAN REPATRIATION DREAM!!!!


So you admit that we are African-American. That's good.

quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:You think just because my skin is black I OWE SOMETHING TO AFRICA! If that is what you think then YOU Oshun are the fool!!

LISTEN UP, I OWE AFRICA NOTHING!!!!


Look, no one is saying that you owe Africa anything. Calm down. You can be American all you want BUT genetically you are still...African. And remember that.

quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:OSHUN, IF YOU ARE NOT IN Africa, I suggest you take your arse there RIGHT NOW and while you are there maybe you can join the Angolan Rebels or do some work in Darfar or help Africa with its AIDS crises. In this way you can better focus on Africa rather than wasting your damm time talking to what YOU describe as ANTI-AFRICAN niggers like kraal!


What? Did you just use the n-word?

quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:I don't care or give a damm what you say Oshun, WEST AFRICA SOLD ME and millions like me the same way as the white man sells his cattle!!!!!. I had no choice but to be an American.


That isn't even half of the truth. Many of the times, the slaves weren't sold but TAKEN by the Europeans. Only some, if not, a few were sold into slavery.



quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:I AM AN AMERICAN! I only come from Africa. I am an American created from the greed and averice of your beloved West African slave raiders!!!!


You do know that many of these slave raiders were Arab and European, right? The white man has gotten you to HATE your African brothers and sisters when it wasn't even like that. Did you know that the continental Africans were forced to do the white man's labor on their own land? Did you know that Africans suffered the same crap that we African-Americans did? Did you know that the white man split up Africans the way he did to African-Americans and dehumanized us the same?
[/QUOTE]
quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
Listen up Oshun !

I am an honorably discharged Vietnam Vet, I put my blackass on the line and fought for America not AFRICA!! I don't give a sh!t how much whitey, the Klan, Aryan nation or any other red neck racist hates me, I will fight and die to remain American not AFRICAN!!!



Not to split hairs here Kraal... but America going into Vietnam was as much about protecting America as America invading Iraq was about protecting America, you know from those Weapons of Mass Destruction. In fact the Vietnam war was more of an Imperialist war by definition than the War in Iraq is today.
quote:
Originally posted by kraaal:
Listen up Oshun !

I am an honorably discharged Vietnam Vet, I put my blackass on the line and fought for America not AFRICA!! I don't give a sh!t how much whitey, the Klan, Aryan nation or any other red neck racist hates me, I will fight and die to remain American not AFRICAN!!!


That is sad that you were used as cannon fodder in elite imperialist war games...and identify with it!

quote:
Kraal does not speak African


Nobody does. There is no "African language".

quote:
I don't dress African
My culture is American.
I owe Africa NOTHING and Africa owes me NOTHING!
I pay my taxes in America NOT AFRICA!!
My sons are born American not AFRICAN!


I never stopped you from being a self hater, I just point to it out. Don't kill the messenger, particularly when you are espousing the same message.

quote:

You can call me what the fu(k you want, I'm still an American entitled to all the rights of any other American. And while YOU hug Africa my work and my sons work as well as my grand sons remains HERE in America fighting the same idiot bastards as my American forefathers – those who wanted to deny what is owed to all African Americans, - an opportunity to live the so-called "American dream" NOT AN AFRICAN REPATRIATION DREAM!!!!


The Amerikkkan dream is capitalist mythology.

quote:
I know where the fu(k I come from Oshun, I don't NEED YOU to tell me


REally mature Kraal.

quote:
You think just because my skin is black I OWE SOMETHING TO AFRICA! If that is what you think then YOU Oshun are the fool!!

LISTEN UP, I OWE AFRICA NOTHING!!!!


That's fine kraal. Our opinions will always differ, I guess you got a little pissed about my FACTUAL CORRECTIONS of your post. Oh, well.

quote:
OSHUN, IF YOU ARE NOT IN Africa, I suggest you take your arse there RIGHT NOW and while you are there maybe you can join the Angolan Rebels or do some work in Darfar or help Africa with its AIDS crises. In this way you can better focus on Africa rather than wasting your damm time talking to what YOU describe as ANTI-AFRICAN niggers like kraal!


I would never refer to you or anyone else with the n-word. And I have been and do work closely with many an African cause. But pointing out the error in your ideology and factual errors in your post are not a waste of time on a MESSAGE BOARD where others read your dribble.

quote:
I don't care or give a damm what you say Oshun, WEST AFRICA SOLD ME and millions like me the same way as the white man sells his cattle!!!!!. I had no choice but to be an American.


If you don't care, why the anger and foul words?

quote:
And so it is what it is!! Africa for the Africans
America for Americans, - it is what it is!!

lol

quote:
Let me tell you something Oshun, - there is no amount, no degree no intensity of hate or racism that white folk can perpetrate that will ever cause me to deny my Americanism!!!!! Did you HEAR ME Oshun

I AM AN AMERICAN! I only come from Africa. I am an American created from the greed and averice of your beloved West African slave raiders!!!!


lol Let all that self htred out kraal. Doesn't that feel better to be honest?

quote:
So what does Africa mean to a Nig like kraal?
Since emancipation what has Africa done for American blacks?

Let me answer for you Oshun , - NOTHING!!!!

This is precisely why my work is here, NOT IN AFRICA!!!


End of Story Oshun!!!


Wow, the character finally comes through in the end doesn't it?...

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