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(NPR)   A rise in multiracial births is confusing the Census, as children are beginning to check more than one box as they no longer identify with one particular race   (npr.org ) divider line
    More: Spiffy, other mother, Pew Hispanic Center, racial identity, births  
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6475 clicks; posted to Main » on 13 May 2013 at 11:10 AM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-05-13 11:46:43 AM  
Nobody farkin' cares.

Your background may be interesting to you, but there is no measure to the amount of farks I don't give when people start in with "well I'm 1/4 Cherokee, but my granpa was from Ireland, he hooked up with this Cajun broad" and on and on and on and I just want to drink my beer in peace and watch the game.
 
2013-05-13 11:47:02 AM  

jshine: OminousAnonymous: Maybe someone can explain... aren't we all the same race?  Are we not all homo sapien?

Homo sapiens is a species designation. The word race means whatever the person using it wants it to mean, so its impossible to have any meaningful discussion about it.

As an analogy someone else used though, all dogs from a chihuahua to a pit bull to a great Dane are from the same species 'Canis lupus familiaris'. We describe the physical differences between them using the word 'breed'.

Race was probably intended to have a similar descriptive purpose for humans, but politics have made it effectively useless, so there is no politically-acceptable way to describe the differing appearances and characteristics of groups of humans.


Thank you and I agree it is a useless description for humans and only allows for discrimination and bias.
 
2013-05-13 11:47:05 AM  
My grandma tells people she's mixed race - half Sweedish, half Norweigian.
 
2013-05-13 11:47:50 AM  

spentmiles: I'm technically white.  All of my grandparents are white, my parents are white, and my skin is white.  But I always felt like something was off, like I wasn't what I appeared to be.  I started feeling this way really young, too.  I was at my middle school's homecoming dance and they invited the high school drum line to perform.  I don't know exactly what it was, but something deep inside of me awoke as I listened to the pounding rhythms.  I began to dance, throwing my arms back and my chest out, kicking my legs high.  Soon I was lost in a daze, spinning, spinning, wild.  When the drums stopped, everyone was staring at me.  I ran out of the auditorium and hid.

From that day forward, I didn't feel at home in my own skin.  I started doing "black" things, like buying $450 dollar sun glasses with the money my mom gave me for my car insurance.  I made the school bus driver stop and let me off at random places along the route.  I even started being excruciatingly nice to white people until they left the room.  Just last month, I got a job, worked for a week to get a paycheck, and then quit.

It's terrible.  I feel like the world's biggest racist.  I don't even know if these are the kinds of things that black people do.  My parents never let me have any black friends, so I have to go off my best guesses and what my uncle told me about them.  As for real black people, I just seem to piss them off.

It's sad because when someone says, "I knew I was gay in the first grade," people believe them.  But when I tell people that I've always been black, they laugh in my face.  I wish I could move to a place where hip-hop replaced hypocrisy and all people lived under one love.


24.media.tumblr.com
 
2013-05-13 11:48:08 AM  
I don't think it has anything to do with the need to classify people into a neat box for race. It has more to do with gathering useful demographic data about the people who do identify with a race or races. The issues affecting the African American community are not exactly the same issues affecting the white community, and so on. Having good census data is critical for certain types of research concerning populations and large groups of people.
 
2013-05-13 11:48:35 AM  

jshine: So just make up a new catch-all for mixed ethnicity - like Caucasian already represents mixed European ancestry. My ancestors are from all over Europe (not including the Caucuses however).


Same here.

My mom's side is German and Irish and my Dad's side is Polish and Slovakian.

My Polish and German ancestors probably wouldn't get along together.

And it's essentially why I don't give a shiat about "the fate of the white race". It's already meaningless in my family.
 
2013-05-13 11:48:49 AM  
North American Mutt.
 
2013-05-13 11:50:02 AM  

dazed420: The sooner we get ouf of this race issue the better and accept the fact that we are all humans and that we just have different physical traits which helps to add to diversity.


But suggesting we also just have different behavioral traits is still racist, right?

After all, the skin color is different, but underneath everyone is identical, amirite?
 
2013-05-13 11:50:03 AM  

dv-ous: YoOjo: What's it called when an orange Kurdish attention whore with sixteen buttocks worth of buttocks mates with a confused looking retarded Somali pirate lookalike?

The Jersey Shore?


I was thinking Kardashians but sure, that works too, as long as it's a different Somali. Would suck if Kanye got east coast herpes along with all that west coast variant.
 
2013-05-13 11:50:35 AM  

Gonz: devilEther: What most of you seem to be taking lightly is no less than the genocide of the Caucasoid race.

I'm OK with this.

I am of lightly mixed race. There is mention of the "Indian blood" on my dad's side about 4 generations back. It's the type of "Indian" from late-1800s Kentucky that leads to dark, curly hair. My wife's family is English, Russian, German, and Polish... primarily.

Our kids are blonde-haired and blue-eyed. I don't pretend to understand genetics.



Basically human beings enjoy rape.
 
2013-05-13 11:50:47 AM  
I want Caucasian to be broken up into other ethnicities so I can distinguish myself from the southern 'Merkin rubes.
 
2013-05-13 11:51:07 AM  

Prince George: PapaChester: Suck it Repubs.

/you are not a real modern day Repub unless you support conceptual purity.

Awww... That's so cute. Little Billy is learning to troll.  Keep at it and some day you'll be as good as the average Farker.


The sad thing is that I almost bit. I'm pretty sure the fine gradations of ethnic background were not come up with by republicans but rather folks who wanted to precisely define who gets how much aid dollars, based on varying degrees of disadvantage.
 
2013-05-13 11:51:53 AM  
I wonder what Stormfront or other white racists think of southern Italians or Sicilians. Are they white enough?
 
2013-05-13 11:52:42 AM  

FLMountainMan: OH NOES!!!!  How can we play identity politics then?


DING DING DING....

We have a winner! Rod, tell him what he has won!
 
2013-05-13 11:52:51 AM  

Silly_Sot: My wife gets particularly nasty at me over this issue. I am Asian and "White" ancestry. Whenever I check this or "mixed race" on the form, my wife is offended. She demands that I only check "White". She's been living in Tex-asshole for over a decade. I think the state rubbed off on her far more than she's willing to admit.


It actually happens with a lot of families.

I grew up with a friend who was half Puerto Rican and half Irish.

Her Dad (The PR) REFUSED to teach his children Spanish, name his kids Spanish names, and discuss a lot of PR culture with his kids. He also got angry whenever they selected "mixed" or "Hispanic" on any forms because "they are white".

I think it's an irrational cultural fear of being labeled anything that isn't "white" would hurt you. Considering that WASPs have been in a position of power for the past 2 centuries, it's deeply ingrained in people.

A coal-black Dominican co-worker of my Mother insists he's "white" because he's from the upper-classes of Dominican society.

A Dominican friend of my Husband's family was very careful about sun exposure because he "Didn't want to be dark like a Haitian".

/I think it's a shame that people have hidden a lot of their cultural/racial heritage for fear of discriminated against.
//All men are created equal
 
2013-05-13 11:53:10 AM  
My wife is 1/8 Russian and 7/8 Chinese. Her G. grandpa was a refugee from the czar who settled in Canton. I'm Dutch, German, English and maybe 1/8 black. Grandma was from S. Africa and had really wavy hair. Nobody talked about it except for my mom. Our son is marrying the whitest woman I've ever seen. A blond Finn.

No, I don't have a point. But when this crap started appearing on forms in the 70's, I always checked "Other" and wrote in human.
 
2013-05-13 11:53:15 AM  
I FWB'd a multi-racial guy for a little while about 8 years ago or so. One of the stupidest things that ever came out of his mouth was, "I don't like being mulatto. At least you know who you're supposed to hate, you're white. I can't hate black people and I can't hate white people. Who am I supposed to hate?" I told him he should try just not hating anyone over skin color and to get out of my car.

I wish I knew where that guy was now though. He really loved and wanted my car, kept offering to buy it. Now I want to get rid of the thing and I don't even remember his last name.
 
2013-05-13 11:55:26 AM  

You Are All Sheep: Basically human beings enjoy rape


This is why in some groups, such as the Jews, ethnic identity stems from the mother.
 
2013-05-13 11:57:45 AM  
Spiffy tag? How is this spiffy?
Think of the census workers!!!!!
/mixed euro
 
2013-05-13 11:58:04 AM  

OminousAnonymous: jshine: OminousAnonymous: Maybe someone can explain... aren't we all the same race?  Are we not all homo sapien?

Homo sapiens is a species designation. The word race means whatever the person using it wants it to mean, so its impossible to have any meaningful discussion about it.

As an analogy someone else used though, all dogs from a chihuahua to a pit bull to a great Dane are from the same species 'Canis lupus familiaris'. We describe the physical differences between them using the word 'breed'.

Race was probably intended to have a similar descriptive purpose for humans, but politics have made it effectively useless, so there is no politically-acceptable way to describe the differing appearances and characteristics of groups of humans.

Thank you and I agree it is a useless description for humans and only allows for discrimination and bias.


It would be useful to have an alternate word to intelligently discuss physical differences though, since they do exist. We already have words like 'culture' to discuss sociological differences between groups.

I'm fine with retiring 'race' to the treadmill of political acceptability, but there is a hole in the language then... Assuming there are no physical differences between geographically separated populations of humans is clearly false.
 
2013-05-13 11:58:53 AM  

spentmiles: I'm technically white.  All of my grandparents are white, my parents are white, and my skin is white.  But I always felt like something was off, like I wasn't what I appeared to be.  I started feeling this way really young, too.  I was at my middle school's homecoming dance and they invited the high school drum line to perform.  I don't know exactly what it was, but something deep inside of me awoke as I listened to the pounding rhythms.  I began to dance, throwing my arms back and my chest out, kicking my legs high.  Soon I was lost in a daze, spinning, spinning, wild.  When the drums stopped, everyone was staring at me.  I ran out of the auditorium and hid.

From that day forward, I didn't feel at home in my own skin.  I started doing "black" things, like buying $450 dollar sun glasses with the money my mom gave me for my car insurance.  I made the school bus driver stop and let me off at random places along the route.  I even started being excruciatingly nice to white people until they left the room.  Just last month, I got a job, worked for a week to get a paycheck, and then quit.

It's terrible.  I feel like the world's biggest racist.  I don't even know if these are the kinds of things that black people do.  My parents never let me have any black friends, so I have to go off my best guesses and what my uncle told me about them.  As for real black people, I just seem to piss them off.

It's sad because when someone says, "I knew I was gay in the first grade," people believe them.  But when I tell people that I've always been black, they laugh in my face.  I wish I could move to a place where hip-hop replaced hypocrisy and all people lived under one love.


As you go out into the wide world to discover your special purpose, remember these things: the Lord loves a workin' man. Don't never ever trust Whitey. And see a doctor and get rid of it.
 
2013-05-13 11:59:45 AM  
I blame Crayola for changing the name of its "flesh" colored crayon to "peach" in 1962 and "Indian red" to "chestnut" in 1999.
 
2013-05-13 12:00:12 PM  
I'm Cablinasian, but everyone thinks I'm just black.  Man, was it tough when my dad made me practice golf all the time.  I just wanted to play baseball or basketball with all my friends.


/Not really--all white via German, Czech, and British ancestors.
//My kids are 0.0078125% Cherokee, though.
///I'm doing my best to integrate--I had sex with a 1.56% Native American!
 
2013-05-13 12:00:45 PM  
I checked other and wrote in human. Those who checked more than one are showing their lack of intelligence since it clearly state that you should only check one.
 
2013-05-13 12:01:49 PM  
Moar asians for everyone! !!

/ except asian men
 
2013-05-13 12:03:12 PM  
We were warned by the Nazis AND by the Klu Klux Klan that this would happen.
Why doesn't anyone listen to the Nazis and the Klu Klux Klan?!
 
2013-05-13 12:03:45 PM  
I've just started filling in "Other" and writing in "Human" any time I have to fill out a form where they ask what  "Race" they are.  I mean they are Norwegian, German, native east coastal Mexico (Olmec?), Spanish, and maybe some African(?)   Just about the only thing I can say for sure is that they are definitely not Kzin.
 
2013-05-13 12:04:31 PM  
Race is a stupid concept that should, but won't go away anytime soon.

I mean, really just the NorthAm years of my family I am of Central African, Western European, and Aboriginal North American.  Checkboxes are stupid.
 
2013-05-13 12:05:18 PM  

The Pope of Manwich Village: I blame Crayola for changing the name of its "flesh" colored crayon to "peach" in 1962 and "Indian red" to "chestnut" in 1999.


Prussian Blue forever!
 
2013-05-13 12:06:40 PM  

tortilla burger: I don't think it has anything to do with the need to classify people into a neat box for race. It has more to do with gathering useful demographic data about the people who do identify with a race or races.


Demographics? Well, now, let me see. You know, I don't have any idea what that means ... I know what you think it means, sonny. To me, it's just a made-up word. A politician's word, sonny. Young fellas like yourself can wear a suit and a tie and have a job. What do you really want to know? Am I black or non-black hispanic? ... There's not a day goes by I don't feel confused about my ethnicity. Not because I'm in here. Because you think I should. I look back on the way I was then. A young, stupid black kid who filled in those terrible race boxes. I wanna talk to him. I wanna try to talk some sense to him. Tell him the way things are. But I can't. That kid's long gone and this old multiracial man's all that's left. I gotta live with that. Demographics? That's just a bullshiat word. So you go on and stamp your census form, sonny, and stop wasting my time. Because, to tell you the truth, I don't give a shiat.
 
2013-05-13 12:09:24 PM  
O_o
 
2013-05-13 12:09:40 PM  

clkeagle: That's great. In only seven or eight more generations, we'll finally realize that the "race" block on a form is utterly meaningless.

What a stupid way to view the world.


Except that in many cases it is not meaningless. Take medical forms, for example. Different races have different susceptibilities to different ailments and may require different treatments. It's not racism, it's a fact of genetics. I can see where it can be meaningless for some things, but that doesn't make it meaningless for everything.
 
2013-05-13 12:10:08 PM  
jfarkinB: Guess I'm part of the problem. My ancestry is 95+% German/Prussian, and I went and married someone who's half Czech. Next thing you know, one of my kids will marry someone Irish, and my ancestral army will rise from their graves in rage.

Leastwise you get to tell everyone that you are a Czech's mate.
 
2013-05-13 12:10:09 PM  

clipperbox


Demographics? Well, now, let me see. You know, I don't have any idea what that means ... I know what you think it means, sonny. To me, it's just a made-up word. ...


*golf clap*
 
2013-05-13 12:11:13 PM  

netgamer7k: I wonder what Stormfront or other white racists think of southern Italians or Sicilians. Are they white enough?


I think they are now. Recruitment is down so they have relaxed their standards a bit.
 
2013-05-13 12:15:16 PM  

mod3072: clkeagle: That's great. In only seven or eight more generations, we'll finally realize that the "race" block on a form is utterly meaningless.

What a stupid way to view the world.

Except that in many cases it is not meaningless. Take medical forms, for example. Different races People with certain inheritable genetic markers have different susceptibilities to different ailments and may require different treatments. It's not racism, it's a fact of genetics. I can see where it can be meaningless for some things, but that doesn't make it meaningless for everything.



Race is old, outdated, shorthand.
 
2013-05-13 12:15:26 PM  

MagSeven: netgamer7k: I wonder what Stormfront or other white racists think of southern Italians or Sicilians. Are they white enough?

I think they are now. Recruitment is down so they have relaxed their standards a bit.


They've allowed Catholics into their ranks soooooooo

/I want to punch every single one of them in the face
 
2013-05-13 12:16:02 PM  

MonoChango: I've just started filling in "Other" and writing in "Human" any time I have to fill out a form where they ask what  "Race" they are.  I mean they are Norwegian, German, native east coastal Mexico (Olmec?), Spanish, and maybe some African(?)   Just about the only thing I can say for sure is that they are definitely not Kzin.


I've been checking boxes randomly, but I'm going to start doing that.

It does have some bearing on medical forms, but for a government census? Nah, fark off.
 
2013-05-13 12:19:31 PM  
I'm white and my girlfriend/future fiancé is Indian, so I've actually wondered how any kids we'd have would answer that question.

/My parents married outside of their religion so I'd just be taking things to the next level
//Mom's background is Italian Catholic, Dad's is Eastern European Jewish
 
2013-05-13 12:19:42 PM  
Genetic Isolationism Awareness Day!
 
2013-05-13 12:24:30 PM  
Good.
 
2013-05-13 12:25:52 PM  
something - something about the cinnamon people

25.media.tumblr.com

/challenging for some
 
2013-05-13 12:26:11 PM  
Check "other" when they have that option, and write in "human". That's what I do.
 
2013-05-13 12:28:06 PM  

purple kool-aid and a jigger of formaldehyde: Check "other" when they have that option, and write in "human". That's what I do.


That's what the Beastie Boys suggested years ago.
 
2013-05-13 12:28:49 PM  
I don't have the time to read all the posts that went before but, why don't they just come up with a category named "American Hybrid"?
 
2013-05-13 12:29:37 PM  

BafflerMeal: mod3072: clkeagle: That's great. In only seven or eight more generations, we'll finally realize that the "race" block on a form is utterly meaningless.

What a stupid way to view the world.

Except that in many cases it is not meaningless. Take medical forms, for example. Different races People with certain inheritable genetic markers have different susceptibilities to different ailments and may require different treatments. It's not racism, it's a fact of genetics. I can see where it can be meaningless for some things, but that doesn't make it meaningless for everything.


Race is old, outdated, shorthand.


Should be outdated, but unfortunately isn't yet. Racial characteristics other than genetics tend to be predictive in socioeconomic analyses - for example, identical resumes with names associated with certain cultures have a lower tendency to get interviews or jobs.
 
2013-05-13 12:33:36 PM  
Came for a reference to Public Enemy's Fear of a Black Planet.

/Leaving disappointed
 
2013-05-13 12:33:59 PM  

lymond01: Notabunny: This has always confused me. By 'race' we mean skin color, right? Why not just say "skin color"? I self-identify as Light Peach.

I think people want skin color to identify culture, not race, which is really the problem.


That sounds about right.  Associating skin color, hair color, eye shape, etc. with cultural norms might help someone know what to do when meeting an unknown person from an unknown background--at least until you meet a guy who looks Japanese but barely speaks the language while his tall blonde girlfriend speaks Japanese as well as a native.

As usual, the truth resists simplicity.
 
2013-05-13 12:34:32 PM  

jennies1897: I FWB'd a multi-racial guy for a little while about 8 years ago or so. One of the stupidest things that ever came out of his mouth was, "I don't like being mulatto. At least you know who you're supposed to hate, you're white. I can't hate black people and I can't hate white people. Who am I supposed to hate?" I told him he should try just not hating anyone over skin color and to get out of my car.

I wish I knew where that guy was now though. He really loved and wanted my car, kept offering to buy it. Now I want to get rid of the thing and I don't even remember his last name.


I'll guess "Washington"
 
2013-05-13 12:36:43 PM  

J. Frank Parnell: They really aren't significantly different genetically, and humans are even more similar.


How do you define "significantly different" for purposes of genetics?
 
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