Why Is Color So Friggin Important?!?!

25 Feb

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NO! I’m not getting addicted to the kittens! Why would you think that?!

First of all, thanks guys for the comments about my sex life yesterday (does that sound strange to say). I finally realized that I had a lot of things that I wanted to say to Scott that I hadn’t said yet, so I said them. Once they were out in the open, things got much, MUCH better.

But today I want to talk about something Scott and I stumbled onto on Monday. Yes on Monday. Yes he was home. Why was he home? Because his workplace laid off 45 employees. He wasn’t one of them, but it’s getting scary out there folks!

Anyway, we stumbled across a documentary called African American Lives 2. I still have absolutely no idea what made Scott click onto a documentary – trying to get that man to watch a documentary on a normal occasion is like trying to tear my kids away from a glass of chocolate milk. It doesn’t happen.

This documentary followed a Harvard professor who was talking with a number of celebrities about their heritage. He used modern means, such as DNA profiling, to learn more about these people’s ancestors. The section we turned onto was a section where he was approaching these black celebrities and was telling them how much European ancestry they had in them.

Chris Rock? Had something like 24%. Morgan Freeman? Also was in the mid-high twenties.

Morgan Freeman.

Really dark Morgan Freeman.

And their responses were usually something like. “Wow. Really?” Almost as though they were saying, “are you fucking kidding me? I have that much white in me?”

What made me laugh incredulously was when he started about how most African Americans say that they have Native American ancestors in their past. Sure enough, as he said that every single person who he interviewed was saying that they had a great-great grandmother with long straight black hair who was full-blood Cherokee, or something of the like.

And what did the DNA profile show?

Nothing.

Apparently almost every black person thinks they have Native American heritage and are proud of that fact, but are stunned and almost dismayed to learn that they have white in them. One woman said that she always thought her ancestors were part of a tribe.

The professor replied, “they were – the tribe of Europe!”

Why is it that color is so friggin important?! I can understand wanting to know and be proud of your heritage, but these guys were really almost upset to learn that they had white ancestry, and all of them said that it must have been because their ancestors were slaves and were raped.

Sorry guys – go back and look at history. While it’s true there were a number of slaves that were raped (far, far too many, I’m sure), there were also a number of slaves who stayed with their masters because they loved them and were treated well – and a number of white women who loved black men and who bore the shame of having a black child. Although, granted, there were less white women having intimacies than white men, it still happened.

I know my ancestry. I have ancestors who came from England, Scotland, and some who were Native American (it’s true! I can trace it back because we have a family tree), and while I am proud to know that at least one of my ancestors were Native American, I’m just as proud to know that my ancestors were Scottish and British.

People just drive me nuts when they get dismayed as to who their ancestors were. You are you. Whether you’re black, white, Asian, Native American, Hawaiian, green, purple, or chartreuse, it shouldn’t matter. Love who you are no matter what race you’ve got mixed into you.

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3 Responses to “Why Is Color So Friggin Important?!?!”

  1. Jenera February 25, 2009 at 4:02 pm #

    Well put ma’am. Another way to look at it is that if a white person openly stated disappointment in finding out they have some black ancestors, people would be all up in arms over that. But it’s okay if the coin is flipped.

  2. Finn February 25, 2009 at 4:34 pm #

    I think it’s an identity issue. Mixed race people often say they don’t feel like they fit in anywhere. It’s easier to belong to two oppressed groups than to discover you’re part of the oppressors as well.

  3. scootersbabygirl February 26, 2009 at 1:37 am #

    Good point Jenera. Definitely a good point.

    Finn, I think you’re right. It’s frustrated to me to think that after all this time people STILL can’t get past race.

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