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View Diary: Why? CNN and NPR Present a Potpourri of Tragic Mulattoes Before a National Audience (285 comments)

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  •  huh? (3+ / 0-)
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    tjcj, rikyrah, Dave the Rave

    who is upset at anyone. those kids in that documentary, most of them, have not found their way. they are very lost and are going to have some real harsh lessons taught to them in life. as i said above, mixed race confused biracial types are not an abstraction to me. i see them all the time. and many eventually come to be all upset when they realize that they are "black." their parents have not equipped them with the armor necessary to be successful on these matters so others have to step in.

    re: the one drop rule. you cannot impose a standard on a people based on white supremacy and then turn around and deny how said standard has become a source of strength and community. there is nothing at all "racist" in how black people as a subaltern community repurposed the "master's tools" for our own ends.

    race is a social construction. i understand the intersection of race and science. it is of no comfort the millions of blacks--most of us already mixed race--that science says that there is more genetic difference within racial groups than between races. day-to-day racism and structural racism is not paused by such inconveniences.

    i am trying to give those confused kids the strength of community to find some grounding in a society which despises people of color. these kids want to be "special" because one of their parents is not "black." they have likely absorbed that poison from their homes and society and schools. once they realize they are black, and loved by black people, and part of a history and lineage that is not prefaced on the fiction of "pure races" they will have strength. once they learn of mulatto and lighter skinned blacks who could have passed but chose to fight in the Black Freedom Struggle maybe they will have a sense of race pride.

    most are broken. many have not even realized that they are tragic mulattoes who want to belong to something-Whiteness-that has little use for them.

    •  My impression from your descriptions of them (4+ / 0-)

      ...gave that impression. They are young people, they are supposed to be confused and rebellious.

      I saw articulate young people questioning the world around them. I saw nothing that I would describe as "broken", or "tragic mulattoes". Look to the jails and prisons and on the streets if you want to see real tragedy. Running out of food today at the Food Bank and having to turn people away is tragic.

      Those kids questioning identity is not tragic. Only if we allow them to become self-destructive does it turn to tragedy.

      Now if you want to talk about the Clarence Thomas' of the world as tragedy, then I think there is a history to make a strong argument. There is no such history with the kids featured in that program.

      I want to see every person stake their own path. I am always suspicious of those who demand conformity and deem those that don't automatically conform as in need of help. Judging most people as they are/were in their late teens and early twenties as if they were older and more experienced just seems unfair and too easy.

      "There is nothing more dreadful than the habit of doubt. Doubt separates people. It is a poison that disintegrates friendships and breaks up pleasant relations. It is a thorn that irritates and hurts; it is a sword that kills.".. Buddha

      by sebastianguy99 on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 03:18:57 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  i have to agree with clarence. he is a bundle of (1+ / 0-)
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        sebastianguy99

        sickness. we can agree to disagree, but that young girl, much darker than a brown paper bag talking about how she knows nothing of "black culture" and doesn't consider herself "black" was a hot mess. get her help now.

        •  We only disagree that these kids make the case... (4+ / 0-)
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          malharden, smartdemmg, gramofsam1, tikkun

          ...that I believe you are making.For example, the young lady you keep referring to comes to identify as "black" at the end of the program. So why harp on her journey rather than applaud where destination?

          Anyway, it would be very interesting to broaden this conversation to all communities of color. African-Americans are not the only community that has to deal with colorism and issues of "pasiibilty".

          "There is nothing more dreadful than the habit of doubt. Doubt separates people. It is a poison that disintegrates friendships and breaks up pleasant relations. It is a thorn that irritates and hurts; it is a sword that kills.".. Buddha

          by sebastianguy99 on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 04:47:06 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Your description of the young people confused and (3+ / 0-)
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        ladybug53, tikkun, mim5677

        honestly upsets me. I'm in a biracial family, although mine is Chinese and white (Ashkenazi) rather than black and white. My daughter looks fairly Chinese. If I'm understanding you, you're saying that there's something lost or confused about her if she identifies as biracial or closer to white culture than to Chinese American culture simply on the basis that she'll never be confused for white... and that I'll be doing a poor job of raising her if I don't raise her to think of herself as primarily Chinese.

        I don't expect her to identify as white, and my husband and I hope and expect her to feel an understanding of herself as a product of two peoples and two cultures. But I have no intention of either erasing myself or my extended family from her conception of self or her awareness of genetic heritage. She's not primarily Chinese, whatever she looks like. She's happa. I'm real. My relationship to her is real.

        I didn't see the special, but it sounds to me like you're upset that these biracial children--some of whom apparently were raised primarily by their white parent--want to be able to acknowledge their white parent and ties to white culture. That's not lost or confused. That's just wanting a space for to acknowledge the fullness of their identity.

    •  you overlook a lot of stuff ... (0+ / 0-)
      ...their parents have not equipped them with the armor necessary to be successful on these matters so others have to step in.
      You only can equip your kid with that said armor, if the parents can live it as an example. You can talk all day long and "theoretically" equip your child, but you can't live that experience of being black, if you are a white parent. So, it's simply in earnest not possible.

      Having a black mother as a light-skinned "mixed-raced" kid, the kid can get this armor from his black mother, but a white mother can not do the same, because she happened to be born white and didn't live a black experience. Whatever she does, she is still a product of white privilege and inheritance, if she wants it or not. How are you so sure that "stepping in" doesn't cause more conflicts than it resolves?

      ...these kids want to be "special" because one of their parents is not "black."
      That's one-sided. My experience is that "mixed-raced" kids would love to be not "special" but are seen that way, because one of their parents is "black" or "white", dependent in which environment they grow up in.

      Do you consider the environment in which those kids grow up in? Is it a white school in the US, or a white school in Europe, is it an African school in Nigeria or a multi-race school of various asian, native indigineous and white people or is it an afro-american mainly black school in the US? For all these situations, these kids (dependent which parent is the white one and which parent is the black one, in addition you have to distinguish if you have a girl or a boy mixed-raced child) have very different experiences and to say that their parents are the ones, who are at fault and have not equipped them with the armor necessary to be successful on these matters is "a bit too big and easy an answer". Your simplification of a very complex and painful issue for many of these kids and parents is a bit baffling.

      The whole issue of asking someone to identify himself on the basis of race is bullshit. I think it's offensive and one thing I have always refused to do is making a cross at these racial categories the US is asking for. It's racist. Hitler did it, South Africa did it and the US is doing it.

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