Saturday, July 13, 2013

Dealing With Race in the 21st Century – Thoughts from a Young Bi-racial Woman

My 20 year-old daughter, Joana, has been in some discussions that have sprung up from the Trayvon Martin case, but are not limited to it. Her words are insightful, well expressed and I am honored to share them with you.
Posted by Joana Jackson, July 13, 2013

I feel like I'm inserting myself into a complex and troubling conversation, but I just thought I'd share my two cents... :) I think it's great to take pride and joy in the accomplishments of the minorities who came before us and realize how blessed we are to benefit from their sacrifice. But I think it is equally important to realize that race is a very complex and faceted issue that still exists in a significant way. I mean to say that while the issue of race is very different from what it was in the past, the issue of racial injustice and inequality still exists today and still manifests in many lives (my own included). I also come from a racially diverse home (my ma is Filipina and my pa is Black). Much of our experience as a family and as individuals has been impacted by race. Realizing and addressing the fact that there is a problem doesn't make an individual weak or just means that they identify that they aren't being treated in a manner that is appropriate or in compliance with the idea of equality. I agree it's important not to be dissuaded from achieving and striving for success by racial barriers. However, I also think it's important to notice and acknowledge that these barriers definitely exist and it's alright to question why they do and ask how they can be dismantled.

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