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Sunday, August 2, 2009

Why a "box" to check doesn't matter

Recently, a friend of mine asked me what I wanted my children to consider themselves as in race. I told her in my home I have no box to check for race...you are who you are. This conversation got me thinking that as they got older they will need to check a box whether for employment or for medical reasons.


I want my children to grow up knowing that they are in fact a person and not defined by "box" to check for race. Yes, they are half West Indian and half Korean, BUT that is only their heritage. They are BLACK when it comes to the color of their skin. When people look at them, they will see black children...yes they look mixed, but everyone will know that they are BLACK. I want them to love their black skin, the texture of their hair, their beautiful full lips and noses...everything that makes them unique and beautiful.

What I do not want is for them to feel shunned by the Korean community because they do not have the fair skin, flat faces, and pin straight hair. I do not want them feeling as though they are beneath anyone.

My children are not denying me or my heritage. They are just being themselves. They are being who we, my husband and I, are raising them to be. I don't feel jilted in any way. I am, however, proud to be their mother.

7 comments:

Yakini says:
at: August 2, 2009 at 9:44 PM said...

I just hate feeling confined by labels. "If you talk this way it means this about you... if you live in this neighborhood it means this about you... If you identify with this ethnic group it means this about you..." Im a free spirit, and it bothers me to be boxed in this way.

Yet, it seems that this is how we (as Americans) understand and process the world around us. The day we can all get past that crap will be a beautiful day indeed.

It seems you and DH are doing the best thing for your child(ren) by just encouraging him to be who he is regardless of whatever boxes/labels he has to ever check!

Nikki @ Euphoria Luv says:
at: August 2, 2009 at 9:53 PM said...

Yakini, this is Yun post and she has 3 girls. LOL

Yun Grant says:
at: August 2, 2009 at 10:01 PM said...

Yakina - I guess I am a free spirit as well then...lol. I have never seen anyone for the color of their skin, the amount of money they have/don't have, or any other reason other then who they are. I wonder why people just don't get over it. Life would be so much simpler.

Yakini says:
at: August 2, 2009 at 10:24 PM said...

I agree, it sure would be! Maybe one day....

Sorry about the he/she! Now Im noticing at the bottom of this post it CLEARLY reads: Posted by Yun Grant (lol)

Great post/food for thought!

rmgales says:
at: August 3, 2009 at 1:52 AM said...

Isn't it amazing what crosses people's minds, what difference does it make. I love the response that you gave your friend. I have a niece and 2 nephews that are part Korean & African American. To me they are my family and they are loved dearly.

Jessica says:
at: August 5, 2009 at 10:23 AM said...

Beautiful. Your children are blessed to have you.

Niqnaq23 says:
at: August 13, 2009 at 1:06 AM said...

It's sad places still have these boxes to determine a persons race. I check all that apply. Yet race will always be an issue with someone family, friend or foe.. We just can't please everyone. So far my kids haven't experienced some of the things I have from being mixed. Hopefully they never will.