Black or White?

In one of the many amazing Michael Jackson songs, he talks about how it shouldn’t matter if you are black or white when it comes to certain things. That statement couldn’t be any more relevant to my life than it already is.

Curious about what I mean? Let me explain it to you real quick.

Growing up kids used to make fun of me because of the way I talked. You would think since I was born and raised in Arkansas it would be for my southern accent, but no, it was for something even more ignorant. They would say that I talked “white.” I would get super defensive and try to fight back but there was just no changing their minds. They would tell me that I wasn’t a real black person just because of how I talked.

I remember going home and occasionally crying and telling my mom everything that the kids would say to me. She would give me a hug and then tell me that those kids were not very smart and that no one can talk “black” or “white.” She would tell me, and I still remember and live by this today, that people can either talk educated or uneducated.

To this day people still tell me that I sound white and what’s crazy it’s not just from one group of people. Black people will tell me that, white people will tell me, really anybody will tell me. But the thing I have noticed through all of the encounters are, that the people telling me this are usually not well educated and are using it as a defense mechanism.

I am not saying that this only happens to biracial people, it happens to anyone. I have friends, who are black, that get told the exact same thing.

Society painted a picture thousands of years ago that black people were uneducated, ignorant, and oblivious to everything. Sadly some people still only see that picture, so whenever they encounter a person of color (POC) who is well spoken and knows a little something about current events their response is to strip away their culture and say that they’re acting white.

This doesn’t just end with the way a person talks, I’ve been called white for the music I listen to, the shoes I wear, the hobbies I enjoy, even the movies I have seen. But guess what. The jokes on them because I am white. I am also black. Being biracial shouldn’t matter, though, people, myself included, should be able to enjoy the things they love without having to be categorized by race.

Continue to follow my journey, and be on the lookout next Monday when I highlight my favorite Mixed-Girl. Can you guess who it is?

One comment

  1. I cannot help but wonder why this doesn’t change. There was a documentary years ago looking at African American students. The smartest students would often start letting their grades slip in order to be more accepted by their peers. There is actually a freakonomics piece on it as well. I am not sure why the black community would want to continue to associate “acting white” with things like getting good grades and using big words.

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