Monday, October 20, 2008

My President Is... Black?

To say the least, much has been made of Barack Obama's race. Millions proclaim that he will be our first Black president if elected. There's just one problem: he's not Black. He's mixed.

In America, we tend to lump anyone with "one drop" of "colored" blood into that person's minority group. While on the one hand it lends credence to the minority group to which that person is rightly part of, we tend to ignore the fact that we are completely eliminating a huge part of a person's background. If you ask most people of mixed-race heritage directly, they will not tell you, "oh, I'm Black" or "I'm Puerto Rican", or "I'm Japanese". In reality, the majority of mixed-race people will say, "I'm Puerto Rican and Black", "I'm half White, half Black", etc. These people know and value the constituent parts of their backgrounds, so why don't we have the respect to do it as well?

I don't want to make it seem as if I am not proud and happy to have an African-American representative in the running for the Presidential nomination. However, I think we must keep in mind that there are two parts to his whole. To simply call Barack Obama "Black" is a token of disrespect to the mother who bore and raised him.

Note: I'm fully aware that there is no biological definition of or distinction between races, but for the purpose of this posting, I'm operating under the assumption that whoever reads this will understand my use of the term.

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