Racism in my family that’s hidden.

Justin Hoehing, Macomb, MI The year 2020 has revealed the ingrained racism that many in my family aid in perpetuating. This occurs with my pale-faced relatives despite the actions taken by younger relatives and my relatives of color. What is happening now has happened in the past. Old habits are difficult to end but they […]

Our boys died for your kind

Deborah Halperin, Bloomington, IL A man said this to me while we were in line at the post office. I was 18 and had just moved from Hawaii to Iowa for college. I am part Chinese and Filipino. I look Asian. He must have thought I was Vietnamese? Korean? I was caught off guard. I […]

I’m learning. Please don’t be offended.

Rachel Townsend, Rexburg, ID As a white woman, I will probably never understand completely what my brothers and sisters of different races feel and experience. But I want to listen, I want to learn and I want to see from a different perspective. I just don’t want to offend anyone by asking questions about things […]

Small white girl, watching heroes march

Susan Thackston, Agoura, CA. I was listening to an NPR story resently on Morning Edition. The program talked about “The Race Card Project” and that it was collecting peoples experiences during the 1960’s period of the civil rights movement, distilled into 6 words only. George Wallace’s daughter, Peggy Wallace Kennedy, was only three years older […]

School integration enriched my white life.

Cynthia Waszak Geary, Baltimore, MD. I grew up in Durham, NC and attended Hillside High School as part of the first court ordered desegregation plan to achieve racial balance. I am heart broken that since that time there has been a steady and deliberate re-segregation of schools in the US. I am hoping for leadership […]

Crenchaw climbs Denali realizes King’s dream

James Edward Mills, Madison, WI. Fifty years ago this summer in 1964 Charles Madison Crenchaw became the first African-American to climb to the summit of Mount McKinley, the tallest peak in North America. Also known as Denali this peak represents the highest physical point that anyone can achieve in this country. And as metaphor of […]

Misreading slavery due to modern morals.

Rikki Clark, Milwaukee, WI. I teach African-American literature and folklore at the university level. Often white students will say in class how they would have never owned slaves. But there is a fundamental problem when we view history through a twenty-first-century lens. Our modern morals and values are out of context. I would hope, if […]

Spanish is not my first language!

Valeria, Cincinnati, OH. Whenever I say I am from Brazil (most of the time) people instantly start to speak in Spanish as it is my first language. It does not offend me however I think it is very ignorant to believe everyone from South American speaks Spanish.

Mom, why do they hate us?

Theresa Salomon, Parkland, FL. A few months ago, as my 7 year old son was about to seat next to a class mate, he was told that Blacks should stay on the other side. That sentence changed our lives. My son and I had many conversations about racisms, and throughout I was able to redirect, […]

Being white is more than privilege.

Adela Ludeke, Austin, TX. I know that whites are traditionally “privileged”, but I find it so cringeworthy when I hear other whites checking their privilege. It’s as if they have so much guilt because of what their ancestors did. And it’s more embarrassing when your parents check their privileges. Sure, racism is shameful, but too […]

How ’bout we all dig deeper?

Jenna Barrows, North Reading, MA My name is Jenna Barrows. I grew up in the Boston Area of Massachusetts with all white ancestors. I believe it does not matter what color skin you have or where you are from. You can choose how you want to identify yourself and what culture you want to embody. […]

I am tired of it all.

Bee, USA I am tired of it all. I love you for who you are on the inside Rather than the outside. I’m tired of the blame I’m tired of the violence I’m tired of your hate Hate towards yourself And hate towards others Stop blaming the bi***y lady of racism Stop blaming your sh***y […]

Be Present, Be Here, Be ME

Mechelle E. Salley, Denver, CO It’s important, especially during these times, to be your full authentic self. Whether that is wearing your big natural afro, wearing clothes that represents you/your culture and /or speaking out against injustices and oppressions in the community and in the workspaces. Being your full true self, being my Black self […]

The foundation of EVERYTHING in America.

Robert Rose, Westbury, NY You cannot truly understand any aspect of American history, economics, culture, politics or any aspect of American life without understanding America’s foundation of human trafficking and bondage of Africans and their descendants. If you ignore this you are not serious about wanting to understand America.

A delusion based on an illusion.

Courtney Tolbert, Washington, DC I believe that our acceptance of racial classifications as an informative, science-based tool for perceiving and understanding each other is at the crux of our ever-evolving discord. It is a tool relevant only as a means to extract value away from individuals for purposes of exploitation and a device to coddle […]

I am tired of talking race

Anonymous, USA I don’t care what skin color you have. I only care about people being kind to each other. There is far too much hate on all sides. I’m tired of it. Just shut up! Anyone whining about it don’t want my help anyway! So please DO something. Stop shouting and take action and […]

I love to talk about race

Henriette Hakopian, East Grand Rapids, MI I love to understand people, their journeys, preferences, experiences and perspectives. I have had to learn that because I am white, it is hard to talk about race.

“White” people have many cultures.

Christine Marie VonSteeg-Byrd, MI My grandparents came to the US from Sicily and Germany. They dealt with much ethnic hatred from their new neighbors but they had no resentment. Our culture is very much alive. I am proud of my European heritage. When non-Europeans say that we have no culture, it is hard to not […]

Racism is not a harmless joke

Sofia Cuenca Rojas, Acworth, GA I am Hispanic and due in great part to my parents, who I am thankful for, I have been protected from racism for the majority of my life. And yet when someone makes what they would consider a harmless joke, safely from the other side of a wall they use […]

How to protect my black son?

Michael Bolton , Scottsdale, AZ. Understanding Race Project- University of Michigan Dad Caucasian. lived life in black neighborhood mostly. studied black history–college+leisure. love black culture esp music, classic jazz. slave narratives. am black myself but cannot pass as such. other dad, my partner, black, died. am now single dad, not planned. bringing up son in […]

Divisiveness planted to keep us distracted

Kelly O’Brien Pruitt, Houston, TX. I love living in a multicultural City. I love seeing different sizes and shapes and colors, different combinations of ethnic groups. To me this is what America looks like. I want to tell every white person who thinks that America belongs to them is that we came from Europe and […]

“He’s not your son? Oh good!”

Amber Halverson, Eugene, OR. “Oh good! He doesn’t look like he has any white in him at all!” My first real encounter with my own race that I can remember was when I was in middle school. My white godparents had just adopted a black baby. They “kept his black name”, DiMario, as his middle […]

Multi does not equal NO race.

Erin Yarbrough, Norman, OK. My husband is half black and half Korean. I’m white. Our son is three races, but I hear and fear that others don’t see him as any race. Multi-racial is sometimes a hard way to identify.

They glare at my bi-racial son.

Linnette Derry, New York City, NY. I often think about the inevitable discussion about race that I will have to have with my son one day. That day when he will begin to ask me why people think I’m his nanny/housekeeper instead of his mother; the day when he will ask me why people keep […]

My family members are not terrorists.

Sarah Darradji, Washington, DC Growing up with a North African dad and an American mom (with French and German parents) left me feeling torn between two worlds. From my features, you would never guess my family is from the Berber tribe of North Africa. One day in elementary school, a kid in my class told […]

With great privilege comes great responsibility.

Faith Hendricks, Lexington, NC I have been born into a lot of privilege. I am healthy, relatively good looking white female. While my family has gone through periods of struggle, we have always been secure financially. We have lived in safe neighborhoods, had good houses, and I’ve been able to attend private schools. I have […]

Black boys once cost fifty dollars

Ayanna Bennett, Oakland, CA I work in equity so I think and talk about racism a lot. It’s easy to get discouraged when I don’t remember the enormity of the wound that we are trying to heal. Huge parts of our country were developed around forced labor camps and governed by human traffickers. That’s a […]

Privilege of being disabled, poor, white

Jane Morris, Australia I have light skin but that doesn’t mean I am immune to struggle, prejudice or difficulty. So many of the social advantages that the current woke culture attributes to whiteness are the advantages of being middle-class and higher. White-skinned working and underclass people can be barred just as surely from social mobility […]

Braiding red bones and white blood.

Bari Goodblood Lehn Wetzel County, WV Born to a Santee Sioux mother and a German father in the Midwest. They met and married when she was relocated to the city as part of termination policy for reservation Indians in the 1950’s. Four babies later, for reasons I never knew, she left us, taking with her […]

I’m not going to pick one.

Sierra Moore, Springfield, IL. The picture is one of me as a baby. Since my early childhood until now I’ve been encouraged by people close to me as well as acquaintances to identify myself as one race. I’ve also heard people guess what my ethnic background is (which no one has fully guessed correctly). They […]

Native American and Aztec with curls?

Kortny, Fuitland, ID I had some speculation as to my race, thinking I could have some Native Hawaiian in me, hence the curly hair, but I also remembered my father is somewhat Native as well as Mexican and Aztec. He also had curly hair when he was my age. Even my older half brother, his […]

I Shouldn’t Get Benefits For Whiteness

Emily Bertot, Clarksville, MD. I grew up in Florida in an extremely non-diverse, middle-class area. Moving up North was a big culture shock, but it forced me to realize how many different types of people there are. I was also made aware of my privilege.

Don’t worry honey, he’ll brown up.

Jen, Bowie, MD. My husband (African American) and I (Caucasian) took our son to his one month doctor appointment. The nurse asked us if he was Caucasian or non-white and wanted me to make a decision so she could check a box. When I asked for other options like a biracial or two or more […]

Stop asking to touch his hair

Jeanine Flier, Tujunga, CA. I am a mother of 3 multiracial children. They all have different types of hair. My oldest son has a very curly large beautiful Afro . My middle child as wavy thick hair similar to mine. My youngest child has large black curls. My oldest child is the ONLY ONE WHO […]

You’re pretty for a black girl.

Deja, Moreno Valley, CA. This statement literally kills me . “Pretty for a black girl” I didn’t know “pretty” depended on your skill color . Goes to show how some look at “black girls” like their not good enough to be pretty.

Well How Black Am I Really?

Carnesia, Aurora, CO. As far back as I can remember I’ve always been told by past educators that I am very “well mannered” unlike the other students in my classroom who were all Black. At the time, I saw this as a wonderful compliment. I wasn’t loud or disruptive like the others. I didn’t play […]

I don’t know my Native language.

Jessica Elaine Matz, LaVergne, TN. I look white and I was raised white, but when we were kids, we went to the occasional pow wow and were told “this is part of your heritage.” My uncle recently joined one of the Cherokee tribes, but I haven’t yet. I feel weird about it because there’s so […]

So white, you would never guess.

Francis, Livingston, MT If the civil war had gone differently I could have been born a slave. The children of slaves are almost always slaves. My great great grandmother was native and many thousands of natives were captured and sold into slavery.

When Skin Color Fades Away

Leonard Rios, Imperial Beach, CA. I am an American Indian on tribal roles and racism has followed my people childhood to present. I am a traditionalist and live an old school life style founded on respect and the spirit of taking only what we need and giving when all possible. I moved to Imperial Beach […]

Good hair is well maintained hair.

Jessica Elaine Burks, San Diego, CA. I am Black, Irish, and Native American. My paternal grandmother had straight long hair. My maternal grandmother had 4c textured hair. All my life I believed the myth that “good hair and long hair” do not belong to black women with 4C textured hair. My friends and even family […]

Blinded grandfather gave granddaughter excellent vision

Nicole, East Lansing, MI. My grandfather was blind all my life. All I knew was that there was an accident. It wasn’t until he passed that I learned that the accident involved a white man. My grandfather was a doorman and was pushed into the glass door. My grandfather never spoke of the incident. I’m […]

My Not So White Life

Joye Beard, Corpus Christi, TX. In the 23 years that my husband and I have been married I’ve noticed some disconcerting things about being in a mixed race marriage. First, I’m not comfortable around other white people at all. If they’re open minded it’s not so bad. But most are not, and once they learn […]

Happy Birthday, you missed teen pregnancy.

Riley Witting, Denver, CO. More often than not, whenever a friend turns twenty, most of my friends congratulates her by saying “Way to go! You missed teen pregnancy”. Although I know this is a harmless comment, and is meant to be funny, I think it is really sad how in todays world we have brought […]

Need a fork. Can’t use chopsticks.

Deb Kruse Tucson, AZ Yes, I am “from” somewhere. Born in Korea – adopted as an infant (3 weeks old to be exact). Yes, most of my family is white. Yes, I grew up on a farm in Iowa and have driven a tractor and a combine. Yes, I’m adopted. Yes I like Asian food […]

Acceptable, only after identified as Hawaiian

Nedra De Lima, White Plains, MD. Experienced “minority status” when we moved stateside from Hawaii in the 70s. I was most often identified as Hispanic/Mexican. Was also identified as generic Native American or African American. Also Inuit or Louisiana Creole. Too many times, I only became acceptable after I identified as Hawaiian Chinese. Then I […]

Bicultural and Bilingual should be enough.

Megan Medrano, Houston, TX. Growing up Latina in south Texas, I have always been surrounded with rich culture. My home was filled with both the English and Spanish language and I was encouraged to live both my Mexican and U.S. Latina identities. I did not realize how important an ethnic identity was until I came […]

Black and Beautiful with Breathtaking Strength

Sidni Sera Goodman, Wayne State, Eastpointe, MI Being black in America is more than just challenging. There are so many highs and so many lows. I dealt with one day feeling black and proud, seeing how other cultures love my culture, style, flair, music, etc., then other days, I see how my black brothers and […]

Passing off white, hearing the truth

Anonymous, USA   I am a light-skinned Hispanic woman. I straddle between the white world and the brown world. White people don’t realize I’m brown, and brown people don’t realize I’m not white. I “pass.” I have freckles, and I don’t speak Spanish. My accent is a Long Island one. I grew up in predominantly […]

People of color–do I count?

Sarina Bhandari, Los Altos Hills, CA. My parents grew up in India and had an arranged marriage in 70’s. Shorty after, they moved to the United States. In 1992, they had me, a first-generation Indian-American. I grew up with a lot of privilege, and I’ve never felt silenced by dominant society. In fact, I’ve never […]

I don’t fit in “your” box.

I grew up “out of the box”. Box 1: I grew up in Ithaca, NY. Box 2: I lived in a small neighborhood five miles from the center of the city. We lived in a modest size house on a quarter acre lot. There were 5 house and one trailer on my part of the […]

This doesn’t make you a better person.

Amy Bramlett, Tuscaloosa, AL. My name is Amy. My fiance Keith and I have the most perfect baby girl together. She’s 8-months old and she is a mixture of her African American daddy and Caucasian mommy. Her name is Layla. When I first told my family that I was dating a black man (long before […]

So yes, I’m white, I’ve struggled.

Brianna Rzucidlo, Youngstown, OH, . Growing up my family had a normal middle class income. But when my parents got divorced at the end of my 8th grade year, things quickly changed. My mom became the bread winner in the family taking care of five children alone. We were getting evicted from house to house […]

I’m who I say I am!

Christina Martinez-Williams. Seat Pleasant, MD. My mother is German and English, at least third generation American born, and my father is Cuban, first generation born. Much of my life I tried to identify with my Cuban side, because that is the side that people cannot usually physically see, especially according to stereotypes of what Latina’s […]

One-drop rule, my a**

Nobody’s daughter, Boston, MA. It’s simple, really: Anything over 50% is a majority. Therefore, being 25% black (one black grandparent) does not equal “being black”. I say this because I’m fed up of being told I’m crazy, or getting looks because I’m 25% black AND IDENTIFY AS WHITE. Guess what? My kids are white; I’m […]

I don’t understand, lets love instead

Megan, KY. Where to start. I have no clue. I guess I’ll start with some background about myself. I am a person full of love and I give it to anyone it doesn’t matter to me race, income, your past, how you treat me – what have you. If I ever get to the point […]

White skin but not “white” mentality

D’Anna Naranjo, Dickinson, Texas, . dis·crim·i·na·tion dəˌskriməˈnāSH(ə)n/ noun recognition and understanding of the difference between one thing and another. “discrimination between right and wrong” I am a teacher. I teach nursing school. I was recently accused by more than a handful of black students that a social media post was discriminatory and was also informed […]

What if this climber were Trayvon

James Edward Mills, Madison, MI. At the young age of 14 Kai Lightner is doing amazing things in the world of sport climbing. In the spring 2013 he ascended exceedingly difficult routes that included Southern Smoke (5.14c) and Transworld Depravity (5.14a) in the Red River Gorge of Kentucky. On the same two-week road trip he […]

I can’t stand none of y’all

Tara Lloyd, USA   Okay, well I do like some people, but there is not one race in this world that I like or dislike over the other, including my own. I’m black, and let me be honest, I love being black. I have a deep love for the black community because that is where […]

You don’t see what I see.

Clarise Liu, Worcester, MA Race is a touchy subject. As an Asian-American, my race plays against me indirectly. I am reminded of how different I am in conversation, in movies, in college applications, in school. In those moments, where compliments spill with undercurrents of insults, I am not proud to be Asian. I am embarrassed […]

We can always change the channel.

Audrey Lee Cho, USA. My parents immigrated to America in 1973, with my older brother Lee Wan Young and my sister, Lee Shin. I was named Audrey when I came along a couple years later, and our little brother Tom was born in 1978. My mother tells me they carefully watched American television, sitcoms and […]

But, Why can’t you speak Spanish?

Tiffany Higbee, Logan, UT I’m mixed. I have a mother from Peru and a father from Idaho. I was born and raised here in the United States. I know a little bit of Spanish but I am far from fluent. Because of my appearance, people assume I’m fluent and I’m constantly being spoken to in […]

I’m white my daughter is black

Jennifer Berkemeier, Farmington Hills, MI. I’m a single mom. I adopted my daughter from Haiti in 2012 when she was 4 years old. I’m white, and 15 years older than most of her friends’ moms. We get a lot of stares and unwelcome comments from little kids (“Is she your grandma?” “How come you’re different […]

Judged for wanting to be different

Jared Baumer, Laguna Hills, CA. It can be hard to stand out and pursue a path of something different then what society and the world want you to do. People categorize you as weird or a loser if you aren’t doing what everyone else is doing. If anyone struggled with this all I can say […]

Indian dad, European mom, identified Latina.

Nisha Balaram, Oakland, CA. My dad would joke around, saying that my mom couldn’t help but fall in love with him when she first saw him. My mom was usually busy in the kitchen at the time, and would smile and roll her eyes in response to his comment; when the pungent scent of lentils […]

Unimportant until I was taught otherwise

Harrison Bartels, Sandy, OR Growing up I thought that racism was something that was largely in the past, except for a couple of outliers. This changed when I found out how much people of color still have to deal with, both from other people and systemically.

God knew what he was doing

Malley Morales, Dallas, TX. Nowhere in the Bible does it say, “and then Jesus whipped his slaves, who were inadequate because of their skin color.” We are all brothers and sisters in Christ, we are all equal.

Trying to understand Afro-Americans is unrealistic

Rick Van Veltenhart, Netherlands. I grew up using google, I’m 25 years old now. Google is going down the drain, try googling; Why are black people racist, and then google why are white people racist, you get the same result for both searches, this doesn’t just mean the search engine narrows it down, it’s actually […]

“An Intelligent, Independent African American Women!”

Malikah Black, Urbana, IL. Based on stereotypes and neither are my sisters. The media instantly judge African American Women on their many failures, but what about their success? You’re most likely to hear about the statics of African American Women getting pregnant in 2015 on social media than those who graduated from college or trade […]

Beauty and strength in our differences

Joan E. Beaudoin, Wayne State, Oakland MI One of my favorite public art murals is located in the Grays Ferry are of Philadelphia. Called the “Peace Wall” and created by Jane Golden and Peter Pagast it reflects my vision of the world.

It’s only fair if I win.

Alfredo Fabrega Scottsdale, AZ After years of listening to rationalizations for success or failure, I’ve concluded that (regardless of race) we all feel that: “what’s good for me is good; what’s bad, evil.” Since we all have different interests, we’ll always be at odds.

A proud American, unwanted in America…

Joseph A Flores, Roswell, NM The scion of pre-Chicano era parents who believed assimilation into the American culture was the key to success. My English only, college graduate led American lifestyle has been rejected by both the White ‘race’ I was raised to engage with AND the Hispanic ethnic group I ‘should’ belong to… in […]

Trending new minority to hate: whites

Bev Parisi, Greenbelt, MD My mother’s family was told “get out Wop,” because they’re Italian. As I grew up I was called a “Christ-killer” and people carved swastikas into my school desks because I’m Jewish. Now my daughter will be called “ugly” “fragile” and “guilty” because she is “white.” In most places I’ve lived, white […]

You do not look white

Evan Arce, Orlando, FL My father was ginger with blue/green eyes. My mother was milk-white with black hair. My kids have brown and dirty blonde hair. DNA tests say I best match people of Italian and southern Greek descent. Some people seem to think otherwise? They always have since I was a kid. I think […]

My name’s Jefferson but I’m Latino

Jefferson Valle, Uniondale, NY Being fully Salvadorian and having a white skin complexion, and having a nontraditional Hispanic name has not always been easy. Still, I’ve learned to love my heritage over the years and accept that I don’t look like your normal Latino.

Andes shadows follow me, no Quechua.

Carmen Mendoza Tintaya, Arlington, VA. My parents are from a remote village in Arequipa Peru, where only until 2006 accessible roads were built. Now with both my parents gone, I find myself looking for my identity and looking towards that little village. I haven’t made the trip yet. I moved to the US when I […]

Yankee child crossed South’s colorline. Paid.

Rebekah Bickford, Baldwin, ME. My white family moved from Indiana to Mississippi in 1977, when I was 8 years old. Our family was seen as “Northern Yankees” and we were not welcomed by many in the white community. The black children were kind to me when I entered school and quickly became my friends. I […]

My color should not bother you

Smriti Gurung, Woodside, NY I made these my 6 words because I feel like the color of someone’s skin always seems to bother someone. That person could simply be a good person, but because of their skin color, some other people get uncomfortable and start treating them the way they shouldn’t be treated. This is […]

You just don’t understand do you?

Lexi Sieloff, Shelby, MI I think that many times people categorize too much and try to think they know everything, which is not always the case. Just because it is not you specifically, a person has no idea what someone else has gone through, which can often lead to other offensive comments.

Cultural Competence: code word for racism

Darcel Reyes Yonkers, NY I am a nurse and the concept of cultural competence is taught in nursing school and addressed in mandatory inservices in healthcare organizations. I am now a doctoral student and find that the topic is being researched to death. But white cultures get a pass on cultural competence. We only have […]

You look Scandinavian but wrong color

Stacy Reuille-Dupont, Durango, CO. This was a statement made to me by a woman at work. She was a client, me an employee. She had been curiously watching me. She was Finnish and had previously remarked that she struggled to capture English spoken around her. I assumed her glances were about language until one day […]

We all bleed the same blood

Michelle Renae McBurney, Murray, IA Together or apart, we all bleed the same. We’re all humans trying to make it in this world. What good does it do to tear each other apart when we can build each other up?

Am I American o de alla

Juan Dominguez, Sacramento, CA. Mexican people say I am a shame to our people with gauges in my ears, the clothes I am wearing, the fact I do not have an accent when I speak. It’s like I was raised in America but by Mexicans that eat tortillas with every meal celebrate mothers day the […]

I don’t know how to act

Eryne Tinajero, Honolulu, HI. I am biracial. I wasn’t raised with much knowledge of either culture. It’s always tough to visit the two different sides of my family. I feel as if they don’t see me as one of them. I feel like an outsider because I don’t know the cultures. I don’t know the […]

____ Students’ Association! Fill the blank.

KM, Austin, TX. I am current in college at one of the largest public universities. Not a week goes by where I don’t see a group of students sitting at a table and asking passerby’s to join their organization. One of the most numerous types would be the such&such Students’ Association. I am of mixed […]

You sound like you are white!

Lyron Andrews, Long Island City, NY. I used to be a minister back in the late eighties and I was visiting and speaking to a group of mostly elderly and all African-American parishioners in Harlem about managing through adversity. After the talk many approached me and warmly commended me and thanked me for sharing the […]

Not wanting to deny my roots

Laura, Red bank, NJ. Let me just start by saying that racial forms are the death of me. I keep clicking back and forth between non Hispanic white and Latin American. Here’s the thing. My mom and her family are from Puerto Rico. The language and culture are very important to her but here is […]

Human Spirit – Our One Equal Tie

Kimberly Davenport, Elizabethtown, KY. Irregardless of our containment, the color of our skin, our heritage, our social structures…one element binds us all and that one element is that which cannot completely be embodied.. the human spirit. I just ordered a dna test..so once and for all I can clarify to some degree what my exterior […]

But you played with dolls growing up.

Trisha Salerno, New York, NY, Colorbrave Circle 1 For as long as I can remember, I have been fluid with my sexuality. I love… everyone. I never made it a thing, I never came out with some grand proclamation. I just happened to start seriously dating a girl that I fell in love with. Of […]

I am not your model minority.

Jennifer Ho, Carrboro, NC. I’m an Asian American woman and often times in my daily life I’m the only Asian American person in the room, sometimes the only person of color. And it’s exhausting to deal with the stereotypes people have, especially because they think Asian Americans are a successful “Model Minority.” And so I […]

My father is racist, I’m NOT

Matt Schoch, Viroqua, WI. I’ve always felt guilt and shame having grown up in a racist household. Even as an adult I’ve felt awkward around people of a different race, as if I’ve done something wrong. My hope is that my race card will help me shed the guilt and shame of being taught to […]

I wish we were all creamy-brown.

Tony Cunningham, St. Cloud, MN. I was going to say “blue,” but that would be a big adjustment. If we were all one race, we’d divide ourselves in other ways, but still, I’d like to make it a little harder to do so.

Thank you for pointing that out.

Lani Broederlow, Salt Lake City, UT. I am Polynesian. I have been told that my appearance does not reflect my last name. It is of Dutch descent and the funny thing is, it’s not even my last name; it’s my husband’s. It’s strange how we tend to sort each other into categories and labels. I […]

“Fair you entered before my son?”

Heidi Adelsman, Minneapolis, MN. Working for 12 years as a Pipefitter in Minneapolis and St. Paul Minnesota, I saw few to no people of color or women working in the construction trades unless a large contract required “minorities” to get the contract. One father of a Dunwoody trade school classmate asked if I thought it […]

It is never going to disappear

Mia Shparaga, College Park, Maryland, . Race should not be a weapon used against individuals to limit opportunities or restrict development. Race is a visible notion of culture and diversity, and should benefit individuals in their daily endeavors.

Oh, I expected a Black woman.

Jamila Wolters, Portland, OR I am a White-passing, Mexican woman with an Arabic name and have heard this statement from people of all races. The difference is the looks on the faces of the people who say this to me, their own race always and prejudice is always written right there. I am a proud […]

I feel like I’ve been sorted.

Jaclyn Huelbig, Edison, NJ. I’m white. When I was a child, I lived in a city (the type that hipsters remain uninterested in!) and I had friends of all races and religions. I had the benefit, for example, of having a conversation with my friend when she chose to don a hijab (her older sister, […]

We all hurt in different ways.

Christine Farrell, Naches, WA. My dad was an Italian/Irishman who grew up in the Bronx and Harlem areas of New York City. He grew up tough and he grew up mean. He was the only white kid in many of the schools he attended. He was involved in gangs, had been in and out of […]

Studying slavery makes me feel ashamed.

Sam Henry, Ashville, NC. As a white male Social Studies teacher I always have a difficult time teaching slavery. From what I know about my family tree I don’t have any family members that owned slaves but that is hardly the point. It is a shameful period in our history but one worth studying. I […]

Disabled Combat veterans also face discrimination

Stan Lightner, Elyria, OH. As a disabled combat vet I have been a target of discrimination on numerous occasions by “Christian” conservatives. Imagine how it feels to be called lazy, welfare queen, worth less than an Iraq POW just for starters. BTW I have an earned doctorate in Occupational & Adult Education from Oklahoma State […]

I don’t even know my origin

Creytisha Gray, Lubbock, TX After centuries my ancestors being stripped from my Homeland, I have no idea where I, nor my ancestors are from. The only clues I get are through DNA ancestry (which does not tell me where exactly my ancestors settled). No traditions, values, religion, or even language is known to me about […]

Divided but trying to work together

Sarah G, Alliance, OH Right now especially, the country is so divided because of background or skin color but I’d like to think we can all remember what it is to be American. We all came from different places, no matter where or when. We should stand together and work for acceptance.

Being mixed is sometimes worse here.

April Sapp, Durham, NC “What a mutt”, “How disgraceful”, “You should kill yourself for existing”. I’ve heard it all. Don’t even get me started on the adoption/kidnapping jokes. Or the colorism I experience within my family. I’m not white enough. I’m not black enough. I’m not Mexican enough. The only thing I’m enough of is […]

Where are you from? You’re exotic!

Abbie Elliott Leesburg, VA For my entire adult life, dating has been a challenge. As an Asian-American, I vehemently resisted falling into stereotypes. But, as an Asian-American on the dating scene, my looks delivered my first impression for me. Men developed ideas about me even before I spoke. Where they expected to find a quiet, […]

Cold Stares Warm Smiles Evens Out

Eric Flores, Lubbock, TX. I am a Mexican-American or simply put American. I was born and raised in a conservative town. I was too Mexican for the Whites and too White for the Mexicans. I was stuck in the middle. I always wanted to be white but now I am glad that I am Mexican. […]

Living liberal in a conservative home.

Quinn, Lake Elsinore, CA Both my parents are very conservative when it comes to politics and everything. I grew up learning from them, but once I hit college, my views started to change. Both my parents have Masters degrees and were principals for most of their careers. They were born in the 50’s and I […]

I’m A Black Conservative (We Exist)

Mekela J Tyler, Indio, CA. Whenever someone learns that about me, they look at me as though I have three heads. It’s funny that the political party that wants to break racial barriers continues to pigeonhole me into a category based on my race. Talk about a double standard. I’ll tell you why I’m not […]

The Pinoy Debate: Asian? Pacific Islander?

Vince Domingo, Fresno, CA. I’m proud to be Filipino. And I’m also proud to be an Asian Filipino. No, not a “Pacific Islander Filipino”, whenever you see them, avoid them as much as you can, they’re terrible people. They hate puppies. Okay, okay, I jest. They are just misunderstood. This is not even a geographical […]

No, you are Mexican not Hispanic.

Alyssa Herrera, Dallas, TX So my birth certificate says my race is white or Caucasian,and my ethnicity is Hispanic/Latino. Yet when some people meet me they automatically assume I’m Mexican because in their minds they believe,” they all look alike.” Or, her last name is Herrera she can be our translator. I can not count […]

A “white girl” with a unique heritage

Ashlyn Rachelle Sharp, Azle, TX. I hate the term “typical white girl”. Why does a girl whose taste buds enjoy pumpkin spice lattes have to be categorized automatically in some stupid stereotype? I may be “white”, but my heritage is so much more than just a typical white girl. My veins are flowing with the […]

You’re foreign. Not American. No way.

Franke Santos, Los Angeles, CA. Despite being born in the U.S., speaking only English, and being given a white-sounding name, I am routinely asked “where are you from?” When I respond, “Los Angeles,” I get the follow-up “where are you really from?”

What can we do to heal?

Stacy Cole, Los Angeles, CA I used to live in St. Louis, Missouri. That was where I first experienced a taste of being “the other”. I worked at a restaurant where almost all servers and customers were black (I’m white). I had some close black friends before that, so I didn’t think anything of it. […]

My voice is always hidden away.

Brandy Roberts, Cottonport, LA. I am a loving mom of 2 beautiful kids. I am proud to be white, and I can not voice that to a single person, lest I be judged a racist. I have love pure and strong in my heart. I can not for the life of me understand why all […]

I’m More than, Less than Accepted

Nicole Reynolds, Virginia Beach, VA. Race often goes hand and hand with self worth. Who am I in the world? What does that answer mean? How does it affect my life? Is there anything I can do to change that? I have Ugandan Blood, Taino Blood, Spanish Blood, Past African American Slave blood. What race […]

What do you mean “white washed”?

Perla Villegas, Wichita, KS Growing up going back and forth with parents was confusing especially being as young as I was. I was moving from a household full of fluent Spanish speakers who only spoke Spanish, from a home where we spoke nothing but English. I grew up to only understand the Spanish language, yet […]

Yes, that is my real name.

Hyosim Nancy Collins, Beaverton, OR. My middle name is Nancy. I was born in South Korea and arrived in the United States when I was 4 years old with my Korean family. Soon after we arrived in California, my father decided we should all have “American” names. When I became a Naturalized Citizen at the […]

Jew. That’s what they call me.

Kelsey Bamburg, Quinlan, TX I’m not a POC. I will never understand their struggles. I benefit from white privilege. I get called a white girl all the time, and I am one… But living in a small southern town, don’t let the others hear you call me that. To them, I am an outsider. Ostracized […]

Puerto Rico’s Identity Crisis Defines Me.

Isabel Nicole Otero Hernandez, Silver Spring, MD. I was born in Puerto Rico to a Cuban Mother and a Puerto Rican Father. The summer I turned 10 my family moved to Jacksonville, FL, and only a year later moved again to a small town to the north: Ringgold, Georgia. When people ask me where I […]

You shouldn’t judge from the outside

Lexie Cagle, Wichita, KS What you see on the outside isn’t always what it is on the inside, how do you really know a person unless you talk to them, surround yourself by them? You cant define someone or judge them or know exactly who they are just because of there skin color. yes they […]

What kind of Asian are you?

Hallie, Auburn, WA This is what I get the most as an international student studying in the United States of America. I feel like it is about how I look, what kind of language I speak, where I come from, ‘am I Chinese’, ‘can you understand other Asia nations’ languages?’. Some people might come to […]

This is just who I am

Yeonsu Park, Korea We’re just the same human beings. I want to live equally without discrimination in any race. There are many prejudices about Korea. Of course, that’s not all true. Not only in Korea but also in any country, people in other countries think that there is prejudice. We don’t know much until we […]

Got an accent. In five languages

Ioana Hojda, Aberdeen, SD Immigrant, white wife of an African immigrant and mother to mixed boys. We have moved to the US from Italy, our first country of immigration. When we travel abroad we have three different country passports for 5 people: Romania, Cameroon and the US.

Prioritize peace of mind young Chicana

Joceline Marrufo, Seattle, WA I find that many young Latina women often are belittled with comments regarding their IQ and financial state. I am of Mexican heritage and I share this experience as well. My advice to other women who can relate to this type of situation in their daily lives is to let go […]

Not all cops are bad cops

Manveer Singh, Auburn, WA Just because there are a couple of crooked/racist cops doesn’t mean all are the same. With everything going on with our country cops are seen in a bad way by some because of horrible things done by a few.