I prefer to be called black. I do not and cannot identify with my African heritage because I am (sadly) so far removed. If I had one eye, I’d be called a Cyclops. When they see me, the first thing they notice is my skin color. Call me what you see so I can know how you identify me.
I like being called Black or African American. Either one can be used offensively depending on who says it & how they say it. It would be great if we could all be thought of as equals but we are not quite there yet. We need to accept who we are & not allow anyone to disrespect us or treat us unfairly. I think it is sad when Black people are ashamed of being Black. Everyone should be proud of who they are & be the best person they can be.
The comments are almost uniformly intended to signal the writers’ virtue. The fact of the matter is that there are different races and it’s futile to ignore them. Adverse discrimination must be condemned, but there’s nothing wrong with recognizing reality. How many times do people struggle pathetically to make themselves understood? “Who won the contest?” “That guy. You know … the one who often wears brown shoes? You know …. the one who was at that party last week. Ummm … the guy who [yadda yadda]….” “You mean the black guy?” “Right.”
I heard someone once tell their children that if you have to provide a description of someone, don’t use their race type as a characteristic. It’s a beautiful lesson for everyone. It makes you go way beyond the surface and links experiences to character.
We use racial stereotypes because our minds are lazy, and we’d rather not acknowledge the subtleties of our existence. When I hold my arm next to a white piece of paper, it’s nowhere near white, more like tan. My neighbor who calls himself black is much closer to my skin color than to the actual color black. The polarizing terms “white” and “black” have little basis in fact, but they do serve to disconnect us, make us seem quite different from one another as human beings.
Being that my lineage is Afro-Latina and African American and Irish, I tend to use the terms “black” or “brown” when referring to myself. When I use the term “women of color” I tend to do so with the idea of honoring women of primarily African dissent but it is a term that can include women of all black, brown and olive or other skin tones and diverse heritages and backgrounds.
I really don’t care. Race is man made and really has no definition. What is black? What is white? Please define those. There are no such things. They are ambiguous and abstract. Also African American is not a nationality. Africa is not a nation. European American is not a nationality. Europe is not a nation. Asian American is not a nationality. Asia is not a nation. If we were born in America, call us all American. If we were born abroad and nationalized here call us the fusion of both (i.e. Cuban-American or Nigerian-American).
Black. African-American feels like I’m being singled out as an immigrant. White Americans don’t get their countries of origin tagged to them with their nationaliy, so I refuse. People are afraid of black, black offends them. Deal with me being accepted as a black and strong as I stand infront of you.
“BLACK” (but ill accept African-American),,in the words of Public Enemy”TOO BLACK,,TOO STRONG”
How much easier would the world be is we simply called each other by the names given to us by our parents? Call me Curt.