Tiger Woods should see this video. I like Tiger, but…he should still research the one drop rule. Yes America has progressed. Yes we are happy that race relations are improving. However, we cannot simply dismiss history as if it has no relevancy to us today. We cannot create this meaningless category called “mixed” in efforts to be more “accurate” and right past wrongs.
Why is “mixed” meaningless? Because someone with a Latino father and an Asian mother is “mixed”. Someone with a white father and a Native American mother is “mixed”. Someone with an Indian father (from the country of India) and a black mother is “mixed”. Someone with an Arab father and a Cuban mother is “mixed”. As the video states, 80% of African Americans come from “mixed” backgrounds. Take a look at Rosa Parks, doesn’t she look “mixed” with something? Malcolm X was also “mixed”, but how do we refer to him? How was he seen and treated in America?
I am happy that America is progressing and I am excited about us perfecting our union. I am encouraged by this past election and hopeful about our future. Will we ever reach a point where we can simply refer to ourselves as “Americans”. Yes, I think so, and in some ways we can do that accurately right now.
However, history does matter. It is important to know who your ancestors are, and how you got to where you are in order to fully appreciate where you are and make sure we don’t repeat past mistakes. One could argue that Barack Obama’s father is from Kenya, but Obama was not raised in Kenya. He was raised as an American, His 4 years in Indonesia gave him unique experiences, but his grounding is in America. After reading “Dreams from my Father”, it is clear that Obama understands what it’s like to be a black American, even growing up in a white household. In some ways, black kids adopted into white families might be able to relate closely to Obama’s upbringing. Yes, Obama is half white. Yes, his white family members loved and raised him. Yes, that is a wonderful thing, and yes it should be acknowledged. But outside of the home, walking down the street with an afro and a basketball, America saw Obama as black. America treated Obama as black. And as Obama said in a 60 minutes interview, in America, if you look black, then that is how you are treated.
Again, great video. Please watch it and feel free to comment.