Dad, your words toward others hurt.

Kenneth Hosto, Tucson, AZ. I grew up hearing words and observing ideals that I will not share with others. I still hear those words and see those beliefs in practice when I visit with my elderly parents. I am glad that I can change what my family represents as I pass on new words and […]

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You don’t look Mexican Native American!

Delaney Rodarte, Prescott, AZ. When I was much younger I was darker skinned and people saw me as Mexican, but now in my later years, especially since I have gone to public school, people see what is now pale skin and refuse to accept me or admit that I am native american and men won’t […]

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Expansive Roots, Exquisite Tongues, Diversity Perpetuated

Christopher Ramsey, Phoenix, AZ. From Mexico, to Ireland to Guam and then back to Spain. I embrace the wealth in language, food, faith and tradition. I intend to continue what my parents started and charitably inform those inquisitive minds to breakdown their misconceptions into fertile ground for understanding and respect.

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All humans are a single race.

Kitty Antonik Wakfer, Casa Grande, AZ. Each of us is a unique member of the human race. No one individual is best or worst in everything. In some attribute of the very many humans can have, certain individuals will be better than others. That is the way life is. Groups are abstractions of individuals, but […]

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Boy From America’s Heartland, Indian American

Rahul Iyer, Mesa , AZ. I graduated high school from Dixon IL, a small town halfway between Rockford and Moline, in the Northwestern part of Illinois. Dixon IL is a small town, and boyhood home of former President Ronald “Dutch” Reagan. Cornfields surrounded the town. I am the son of two medical doctors who practiced […]

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White guy (at) black church, met wife.

Randy Nelson, Gilbert, AZ. At the end of a failed marriage, I explained my love of gospel music (my first record purchase was Bobby Blues Bland when I was 7 years old) to our marriage counselor. She “made” me go to a black church as part of my recovery. That led me to be open […]

Dad fired the housekeeper, my fault.

Sandy Balazic Tempe, AZ The year was 1960 and I was 4 years old. My parents had a housekeeper/babysitter to help while they both worked. One day my father noticed that she would sneak me off behind the basement door on the landing where she kept her personal belongings. When he asked me about this, […]

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I learned I was Black in kindergarten.

Shakira, Phoenix, AZ. One day after our teacher snapped photos of our class she developed them in black and white and scattered them out on a table and told us to find ourselves. I got frustrated because I could not find my photo; that day my mother was volunteering as class mother and she pointed […]

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I am who I am, ME!

Debra Rosenberg, Phoenix, AZ. I am the person I am meant to be, and proud to be a Jew even though growing up I knew what it was like to be “Black”. I had to overcome many obstacles of prejudices.

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I’m American Indian-I’m a Unicorn.

Ty NolN Tempe, AZ I’m from a traditional family and have braids. I dance at Powwows, and participate in our Longhouse Ceremonies. The photograph is from when I used to do modeling and is from a calendar photo shoot, on Motorcycles. I’m on a 1935 Indian motorcycle, because one of the “gimmicks” of the calender […]

No such thing as ‘White Privilege’

Remy, Surprise, AZ. Being white isn’t a luxury. Being white can be a burden. What I mean is. People automatically assume I am raciest based off of my skin color. By law, companies have to hire a certain amount of minorities, so by that fact alone, white people get overlooked because companies already have enough […]

White Guilt Misses the Entire Point

Gabrielle Durrett, Tucson, AZ. As a white person, I frequently feel white guilt whenever the topics of slavery and racism come up. For ages, I felt like I had to come up with excuses of why I shouldn’t feel guilty, the most prominent of which was: “Those were my ancestors, not me.” Well, I still […]

White. Wish I had a culture.

Jan Spooner, Tucson, AZ. As a white American, I don’t have a strong feeling of culture. My African American, Jewish, Native American and Hispanic friends can all talk about a strong cultural background. Their stories reflect their heritage and what it means to belong to their ethnic group. What is my culture and what are […]

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You two are such good people.

Erin Morris, Tempe, AZ. My husband and I have two sons adopted from S. Korea. When people feel compelled to mention our race difference or the obvious fact that our children are adopted, it is often along the lines of what “good people” we are, or how “lucky” our children are to have been adopted […]

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Why do you have hazel eyes?

Jonscott Williams, Gilbert, AZ. This is the question either asked, or thought but unasked, by people both Black and White. This is connected to the assumption that one of my parents is White … neither is, though an early ancestor was. Some Black people have questioned whether I was “Black enough” … some Whites have […]

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There is only one race—HUMAN.

Tamara Parisio Scottsdale, AZ Whenever asked for RACE, I tick “OTHER” and write in HUMAN. For certainly I have never seen a “WHITE” race (and I am not white—my skin is more creme brûlée and that is never listed). And certainly I have never seen a “BLACK” race (though I have seen many shades of […]

Fake friends slandered my wife’s ethnicity.

Gary Kraemer Phoenix, Metro Area, AZ Two different former friends put up hate speech about people of my wife’s ethnicity on the internet. They were directly confronted, given an opportunity to make it right and choose not to. I broke off both friendships. They actually needed my friendship much more than I needed theirs.

Holy Cow! It’s a black person!

Bonny Hanan Cottonwood, AZ I am not a racist and I know this sounds bad. However, I grew up in a very small town that was largely controlled by racism even in the recent past. It was so bad that Black people didn’t live here for very long when they did try to move in. […]

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Not Really Indian, American Born Desi.

Rahul Iyer Mesa, AZ Not Really Indian, American Born Desi is what could be used to describe me. Not Really Indian (NRI) is a term that is often coined to describe people of Asian Indian background who were born outside of India. The actual legal term used by the Indian Government is Nonresident Indian (NRI). […]

Planet Earth – no aliens, only humans.

Patricia Butler Phoenix, AZ When did we start calling people from other countries aliens? I hate that term and the inequality it suggests. All of us are inhabitants of Earth and that fact should connect all of us as we travel together around the sun, year after year.

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.

Slaves yes, but an “M” in the census!

Nancy Buell Tempe, AZ I expected to find slaves in my ancestors census records but I did not expect to find ” M”. Which meant the children were 1/2 white and there were 3 of them. Who was the father? It sure looked like it had to be the father or the sons, all my […]

Race is everything, race is nothing.

John Daws Tucson, AZ I learned this years ago from an elderly black woman in a coffee shop in Manhattan. She said, “For black people, everything is about race. For white people, nothing is about race.” Those contradictory yet complementary thoughts have served me well since then.

“Am I white?” –My Latina daughter

Anne Hickling Phoenix, AZ I don’t know how to answer this when she asks. The answer is both “Yes” and “No.” Her Cuban grandparents self-identify as white, but here in the SW borderlands, she likely is seen by many as one of those “brown” people, you know, the ones who crossed the border legally or […]

Because of you, it was possible.

Bill Parker Phoenix, AZ This is what my childhood black friend told me after Barack Obama was elected President of the United States. I am white. He and his brother were best friends with my brother and I in upstate NY in the 60’s and 70’s. People used to say we were “the four brothers”. […]

My grandsons will be free, someday

Jonscott Williams Gilbert, AZ My grandsons have only known a Black president their whole young lives … they have yet to experience racism, yet I know they will … here in Arizona, and elsewhere. I hope – though I may not believe – that someday they will be free of the BEA (Black Experience in […]

My boyfriend is Mexican, so what?

Rachel Allocco Phoenix, AZ My boyfriend is Mexican and grew up in Southern Arizona near the Mexico border. His father, a successful doctor and US Army veteran, is from Mexico. His mother is from a predominately Latino neighborhood in Los Angeles. People assume that because he grew up immersed in his Mexican heritage, the future […]

Yes. They are BOTH my parents.

Michelle Nickol Tucson, AZ Now that both my parents have passed away, I wish I had a camera to record the reactions on people’s faces when I’d introduce my Mother, Caucasian, and my Step-Father, African American. You could see the genetic race meters whirring in their minds trying to imagine how much of what went […]

My kids mark Navajo not Caucasian

Ginee Scarbough St. Johns, AZ In this crazy world where being white is a bad thing, my mix raced hubby and mix race children mark only Navajo or Native. I hate that we can’t be proud of being my heritage of Scottish, English, and French, but can be “Navajo Proud”. I feel left out. A […]

Shocked! Separate restrooms in Georgia airport.

Nancy B. Riley Scottsdale, AZ I was 15 and on my way to a cousin’s wedding in North Carolina. On a stop-over in Augusta, Georgia I saw restrooms labelled “White only” and “colored.” Raised in Kansas City and living in Arizona, I had never, ever seen such signs. It scared me!

Does my white mom hate me?

Michelle Martinez Tempe, AZ As a mixed child of divorced parents, a White mom and Mexican dad, I overheard a lot of racist talk in my mother’s family. Even though I never heard her say anything, she never disagreed, either. She sat quietly through it, not promoting it, yet not speaking against it. I often […]

I wish it was my prom

Barbara Ann King Sierra Vista, AZ For more information about this Race Card Project submission: http://www.cnn.com/2013/04/30/living/wilcox-integrated-prom/index.html

None Report: Latinos overpopulated Vatican’s decrees

Robby Berg Mesa, AZ I befriended a highly intelligent but undereducated Latino family for ten years, acting in the capacity of a tour guide for three children (9 to 5 yrs old) of the larger Anglo culture as an addition to their schooling. Present at many of their larger family occasions, I saw hordes (no […]

What do you expect, she’s Mexican.

Mrs. Lopez Phoenix, AZ As an adult, I reflect on things my mother has taught me. There’s a handful of “advice” that sticks out in my mind. Her advice is meaningful to me now and I believe it has molded me into who I am, for better or worse. As a teacher, I find myself […]

Three months more, would they ask?

Nina Martin Phoenix, AZ I am quietly proud of my multiracial background: my mother is Chinese, and my father is half German, half American. I also look absolutely nothing like my mother, save for straight hair and slightly tanner skin. While never a negative issue, this has led to some interesting situations since the time […]

The elephant in our nation’s bedroom

Jonscott Williams Gilbert, AZ I am “openly Black”, though I have been described by some Whites as someone who “happens to be Black”, as if that’s some sort of compliment. Being openly Black I find that anytime one mentions race/racism/race relations in almost any context one will be accused of “playing the race card … […]

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 […]

You don’t look like you’re Chinese

Jacqueline Larriva Tucson, AZ I call myself Mexinese. My mother is Chinese and my father is Mexican. I am often asked questions about my racial background because people can’t figure out “what I am”. After finding out “what I am” and which parent is Chinese and which is Mexican, they often ask many personal questions […]

Ivy League, Indian Asian American aspiration

Radhika Guruju Chandler, AZ Education is what helped us get to this country and therefore for most Asian Indian families it still remains the top goal for their children, and education at a Ivy league school is what the focus is on starting as early as 7th grade. Study hard and develop a work ethic […]

I am white and not racist

Pia Knittle Flagstaff, AZ I don’t want to be stereotyped as a racist just because I am Caucasian. I believe that only through open-mindedness, tolerance, and communication can we make this a better place. We should focus on dialogue and this might be a good place to start.

Now we will have to move

Yvonne Hogan Phoenix , AZ I am white. When I started dating a black man, my parent’s sat me down and my mother was so upset, she asked me not to come into the neighborhood. She didn’t want the neighbors to know. She was afraid that she’d have to move. My father said,”I thought you […]

Born German makes me a Nazi

Yvonne Kasper Hogan Phoenix, AZ Because of WWII, my family was displaced and I was born in Germany. When we came to the States in 1957, people would ask where I was from, because of my accent. I’d tell them, very innocently, that I was from Germany. They immediately called me a Nazi. My parents […]

White. Chose Black donor. World better.

April Bamond Surprise, AZ I am a blonde white woman of European heritage. I made a choice to have a mixed race child. As early as age 5, I remember seeing mixed raced children and thinking that they were simply, beautiful. The more I saw prejudice and bigotry, I knew my choice to have a […]

White. Privileged. Always a bit guilty.

Joey Moncada Chandler, AZ I grew up in the South during the era of busing. My parents never showed any hint of discrimination against anyone. I was taught, and believed, from my earliest days that all people are equal in the eyes of God, that everyone has the same intrinsic potential and worth. But I […]

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Best Friend: Pete Lieberman. I’m German…

Bodo Diehn Scottsdale, AZ When I came to the U.S from Germany in 1960, I had never met a Jewish person. Pete Lieberman became my best friend. I was too ignorant even to conclude his ethnicity from his name. How inhibited I would have been had I known early on, even though I was 10 […]

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Ethnically Chinese. As American as you.

Lily Yan, Scottsdale, AZ. Last year, my Australian cousin told me that despite the fact that Sydney has a significant Asian population, she still encounters the ignorance of those who assume she is not truly an Aussie. I could relate, as I still encounter many who ask where I am from and are not satisfied […]

Norwegian Danish Grandma to all “flavors”

Joann Hansen Gilbert, AZ I think we need to learn from the past but rise above and move on…. I let my actions speak for themselves not the hue of my skin. I am Caucasian & I know that I am not racist & that I also judge people by their character and actions. I […]

I tend to scare white people

Enrique Guzmán Tucson, AZ I also tend to scare those that are of a higher social class, the elderly and the people that believe the way I speak English is not the correct form of English. Overall, these people tend to be white. It’s a shame really. It’s terrible that the color of my skin […]

Please: Hispanic is not a race

Mark Wood-Caballero Tempe, AZ I can’t fully determine what races I have in my heritage. My father, born in Baltimore, was a white anglo-saxon. My mother was born in Peru of Spanish and Incan descent, but with German and English ancestors. I grew up in Mexico as a US Citizen and now live in the […]

Do other reporters here cover race?

Anonymous Yuma, AZ I am the only brown person in my newsroom. What luck to work somewhere where issues and stories about people of color are not ignored, but why am I the only one assigned to these stories? Do I become the “Brown” reporter? Or do I see these important stories ignored?

Indian? At least he isn’t black!

Sherrill Dawn Koopot Phoenix, AZ …Worried how your baby will look? 41 years ago I married an East Indian Doctor; He was handsome, smart, kind and everything a woman could want. Both of those comments above were made to me, with all seriousness and , I think, with absolute ignorance as to how they sounded. […]

“Mama, look at the black one!”

Helene M. Angevine-Fina Phoenix, AZ My six words ( amazed how it fit!) were said when I was 3 years old (1959) and I had just seen my very first dark skinned person, a lovely women who laughed loud, long and hard when I said it. In my childs mind I realized that like many […]

Oh, She’s Just Another White Girl

L.C. Phoenix, AZ In youth we never noticed our skins were different shades. We rode the same bus, lived on the same street, were in all the same clubs and classes, graduated high school in the same robes and cords. I hope I’m not just another white girl to you, too.

Surrounded by black, but still white.

Robert Lanza Tucson, AZ I grew up in NYC as one of the very few white kids in the neighborhood, and for the most part the only one in my terrace. Had a black stepfather. It shaped me, and made me who I am. Anyone who really knows me knows it is not possible for […]