It all started when I saw this on Facebook.
Cute right? Looks similar to my biracial daughters. But then I read the quote on the cover.
“The white girls like the black guys, and the Mexican girls like the black guys, and the Filipino girls like the black guys. And the black guys like them, too. But no one likes the black girls.”
Hold up. This is the highlight of the article? NO. This is a way to get your upset and then you read the article.
So the backstory. I am a white girl. I grey up in an urban city. I lived a few years in a very diverse neighborhood and then we moved to the suburbs. My brother who is younger than me, more of a suburb kid. Me, not so much. K-5 we had a handful of children who were different ethnicities. But 6th grade, I went to the so called “ghetto” middle school. There were fights, there were gang members. Out of my 5 best girl friends 3 were Hispanic. My friends lived in the city. They were street smart. They watched MTV. They wore makeup. They were everything I wanted to be
I didn’t change who I was but my friends definately influenced me. My first boyfriend was a light skin black boy. His mom was white. His dad was gone. He was from the city. I still keep in touch with him 20 years later. My 20 years included college, his included jail. Still, deep down, I know he is a good person. While I was taking dance class, he was hanging out in the ghetto. Then this quote jumps out.
“But I don’t want her to grow up and be bourgie,” he says. “I don’t want her to look down on people.”
I have been called Bourgie too many times to count. I work as a nurse. I work in tons of inner city nursing homes. I understand when my coworkers say things about me in Spanish. And usually by the end of the shift, they apologize for thinking I was stuck up because I am not, I just come across that way.
I grew up “colorblind”. It never mattered to me. When I had my first daughter, she came out very light. She doesn’t understand who to identify with. I pulled her from her private daycare where she was in with all white children. I wanted her to identify with other kids like her. I switched her to an inner city daycare. There were children every color of the rainbow. Still, she didn’t seem to care. Once she started school, she was identified as gifted. So now she is back in a class with the suburb kids, and very little diversity.
I asked my 5 and 8 year old daughters to name a famous black lady. For sure they were going to say Michelle Obama since she is on Disney Channel talking about fitness. Do you know who they said?
As an adult with two children, I moved to the inner city. My neighborhood was 90% Hispanic. My daughters would play with our neighbors kids who spoke no English. They would share popsicles with her and she would share empanadas with them.
My girls are well rounded, cultured for being so young. They don’t see people as the neighborhood they come from, or the color of their skin. So now we’ve moved again, and I worry about the type of school I have to send them to. Who they will identify with. And I feel like it will be ok, people will like them for them, whether they are black girls or not.