Scott A. Hall Adel, IA Growing up in a small Midwestern town the entire population of the town looked like me, acted like me, worshiped like me. It wasn’t really until college that I was able to truly experience diversity of culture, race, nationality.
Sophie Dover Jamaica Plain, MA Despite all the gains we have made as a country (which people love to harp on) – a harsh reality still exists for people of color and low income individuals across the nation. Schools and neighborhoods still remain separated by race and income. More money is funneled into schools serving […]
Christopher Bland New Orleans, LA Recently I’ve been studying my history, my essence, that extends beyond what was taught in school and at church. I remember learning more about my race’s detriment and disabilities over our triumphs and royalty. From Kemet up until now, we possess more powerful stories than we know about and every […]
Magda Schay Camp Sherman, OR I am an immigrant to USA and because my parents were educated and saw to it that their children are educated we were able to be part of the whole society.
Janie Hill Hatton Milwaukee, WI First National Principal of the Year 1994 I value this project and hope it will prompt conversations to unite the earth.
Kim Robinson South Africa Race exists. Race is a social construct. To assert that because race is not a biological phenomenon and therefore, there is no reason to discuss racism or that discussing it perpetuates racism is an insult to the people that experience unfair racial discrimination and live with the legacy of unfair racial […]
Michael Caudill Carcassonne, KY If we were all blind, bigots would need to find some other way to discriminate.
Stella Katz New York City, NY I’m Hungarian/American, raised working-class in New York City. I believe that race is a conceit (created to justify the exploitation of one group by another) and racism is the practice of that conceit, robbing us of our shared humanity by creating a hierarchy of false distinctions.
IN NEWS / BY EMILY WILLIAMS / ON APRIL 2, 2014 AT 12:00 AM / National Public Radio host and author Michele Norris will speak about race in America on Wednesday as a part of the Blackburn Institute’s Frank A. Nix lecture series. Norris, who previously hosted the NPR news show “All Things Considered,” authored […]
Lily O’Hara New York City, NY Brooklyn
Daniel Krishnan Altadena, CA
Beluvid Ola-Jendai New York City, NY I see race as a social construct. one that highlight differences of phenotype and cultural and geography at the expense of all else. most of it is unreal. a mythology to imbue false histories and elevated ethnocentrism. its hard to escape at times as we continue to invent new […]
Kiesha Ireland-Tran San Francisco, CA I am an African American girl, yet I grew up scared of black people. I felt that I was unsafe and didn’t belong with them. An adult in my life lead me to believe these things that changed how I perceived myself and others. People identified me as ‘white’ despite […]
Eirann Betka Grand Rapids, MI I wish white wasn’t a race. Because where does that mean I come from? I am given five options of classifications to choose from. Five checkboxes. None of which correctly identify my origin, and of all of them, white seems vague and without a home. Where is white? How can […]
Bob Pickett, Esq. West Orange, NJ University of Michigan Law
Muderi Aradi Poughkeepsie, NY Race to me is how authorities in an environment define aesthetic population differences, in ignorance to the vast continuum of intermediates that may lie outside of the smaller environment. Knowledge or acknowledgement of these intermediates would immediately add a confusion and invalidation to the narrow definitions. In a similar way, knowledge […]
Colette Nkoyi Poughkeepsie, NY
Holly Thompson Grand Rapids, MI I am half Puerto-Rican and half Scottish, but definitely all people see is “white.” I am constantly struggling with pride of my Latina heritage, guilt of my inherent white privilege, and guilt of ignoring half of who I am. I hate documents that ask for your race. Do I put […]
Meg Litts Staples, MN Maybe we should never have started using the word ‘race’. It prompts comparative thinking. Instead of viewing difference as something to celebrate, we have used it as a weapon for destruction, stepping on one another to rise to the top. The top is a pretty lonely place in that paradigm, whether […]
Eddie Christopher Fox Mililani, HI An ignorance of the fact that we are more similar than different, and a fear of difference that weak hearts cannot accept.
Chenelle Nixon New York City, NY Queens What is a race when no one is winning? Race should not define superiority but a majority of human spirit reaching the finish line of equality, freedom, abandonment of self-hate and persecution the color of ones skin.
Ricardo Garcia Athens, OH
Sharee Meeks Laidlaw Murray, UT Our family is a mix of many races. Some of the members are adopted but I forget which ones.
Molly Dodson Stillwater, OK
John Q. Kontos Chicago, IL Sometimes, I wish that there were alien cultures that were a potential threat to our existence on earth, then and perhaps only then, would we view ourselves as one people instead of our current hateful and racist thinking. We all need a reminder from time to time that we are […]
Jason Hoobler Cincinnati, OH Mme Curie should be given enough respect to start classifying our atoms in megabirths
Andie Sandy Springs, GA Everyone always judges based on appearance this one this remains the same as life goes on.
Josie Watanabe Seattle, WA Too many people believe that our work is done. Or why do we still need affirmative action? I wish for everyone to stop, listen and look around so that we can really take a closer look at race relations in our country and find real ways we can keep moving forward […]
Darek Tyson Seattle, WA In a nation of immigrants, color is race.
Jeff Keever Seattle, WA I just wish people would get out of their minds that the focus on “race” only includes some sort of ethnic identification. When people speak of diversity they should be speaking of all kinds of differences–differences in abilities, sexual preference or identity, religion, or any other sort of differences that may […]
Nancy Carr Robertson Grafton, NH I am primarily white, and my views on race (equality) and my serious relationship with a black man were enough for my family to shun me for several years. Our relations have never recovered. I am still, at the age of 61, an oddball outsider to my family — even […]
Patricia Callahan Augusta, ME In memory of S.C., my BFF and grandson of a slave. He passed away unexpectedly 6/10/13, a young, vibrant 83 year-old. I would have called him today to say Happy Dr. King’s birthday. He would have said something like, “but the holiday is not until Monday.” I would have said, I […]
Maggie Martinez WEST PALM BEACH, FL When I get the chance to check “other ” on any form it makes me feel as if I am tearing down another little wall and letting the form creators know that I will not be put in a box. Race is fake and constructed to keep people of […]
Ruth Kverndal Mercer Island, WA
Byron Parrish Boston, MA The idea of race is a fiction. There is no basis in biology for saying there are different races. Our ideas of race are a social construct, historically made up to support the unequal privileges and disadvantages that occur because of racism. However, racism is a real aspect of life in […]
John Locke New York, NY I know it may not seem like it from all the crazy racist rhetoric directed against us. It’s okay to be proud of being any other race, except white. Well, white people invented the light bulb. We invented air conditioning. I think being white is fine!
Linda Morris Shawnee, KS Growing up, I got teased a lot for being a fair-skinned black girl by kids who would assume and make sure I knew that one of my parents surely must be white or another nationality besides “black” (ah, kids). When I became a teen and young adult, I would get asked […]
Nayeli G. Velez Los Angeles, CA I didn’t understand how to take this comment growing up. Now, I cringe when people say it. I see now it’s a comment on my race and culture. A racist comment disguised as a complement.
Fleetwood Wilson Seattle, WA
Jessica Ayers Nashville, TN
Anonymous Seattle, WA Diversity is a gift that has been manipulated to segregate people. Divide and concur is how the system of government controls so many people but to be able to overcome this one must first accept Everyone for what they stand for and not what they wear or there pigmentation.
Craig Woolmington-Smith Orinda, CA I was raised in a military family where discrimination was everywhere and a highly respected way of life, but the discrimination was based on one’s rank and nothing else. This was true up and down the ladder from Privates to Generals and was my first introduction to meritocracy, although we didn’t […]
Diana Gonzalez Franklin Square, NY I am an adopted person. I’ve been searching for my past all my life. I’m 60 now. One of my adopted parents was Austrian and one was Italian. I was raised to think of myself as Italian. In the early 1970’s I searched and found out I was born in […]
Emily Gadient Des Moines, IA Drake University
Sophie Gardien Minneapolis, MN
Judy Freudenthal Nashville, TN I derived my 6 words from a quote by Einstein: All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree.
Hannah Wigley Boone, NC Is this a contest to see who finishes first? I’m pretty sure the term by itself can be considered ‘racist’ since it implies some sort of competition and differentially…
Anne Ward Masterson Anchorage, AK Growing up Black, White and Cherokee in NH in the 1960’s and 70’s made for some painful tensions. In Kindergarten other children would see my mother and tell me she couldn’t be my mother. People would ask me ( and really, still do…) What are you? On the days I […]
JESSE WASHINGTON— Dec. 1, 2012 She asked for just six words. Michele Norris, the National Public Radio host, was starting a book tour for her memoir, which explored racial secrets. Sensing a change in the atmosphere after the election of the first black president, and searching for a new way to engage and listen, Norris […]
Katherine L Rife Philadelphia, PA
Riley Willman Des Moines, IA Drake University
Debra Nelson-Gardell Tuscaloosa, AL
Donor Conceived USA My dad will always be my dad, but at the age of 30, my parents decided it was time to tell me that my dad was not my biological father. Everyone in my immediate and extended family already knew this except for me. They were afraid of how I would respond. All […]
Charles McCoy Los Gatos, CA I grew up being steeped in the folklore of Irish and Italian cultural heritage, thinking I was “half Irish”and “half Italian” and listening to my grandmother crowing about only being Toscana and speaking Toscana ( the received Italian dialect). As I did my DNA testing, I discovered that I am […]
Jimmy Naughton Colorado Springs, CO Why does any race deserve restitution for their hardships? Every race has been enslaved, yet today’s discussions only ever focus on the Atlantic Slave Trade, i.e., the black slave. Hell, the Irish slaves were more plentiful in the English Empire, they were cheaper and treated far worse since they were […]
Harmony Mason Spokane Falls Community College Spokane, WA
Darshi Balasuriya Long Beach, CA I spend my days mostly in Orange County California. I live in this white world and often see myself in the reflection of those whom I love and enjoy the company of. I rarely think about color of skin or race. But occasionally I encounter treatment from others that doesn’t […]
Tim Daugherty Mount Pleasant, MI I think it’s time to stop using the word race to describe ethnic heritage. NPR should spearhead this movement away from a word that (no longer) doesn’t have any real meaning. This is just one of hundreds of papers published since the human genome mapping was completed. We are truly […]
Roberta Wyse Torres Houston, TX When I completed my childrens’ forms to enter kindergarten, I was confronted for the first time with that droplist, “Check race: select one only:” Really? It went on to explain that if you did not select, then the school would select for you based on the teacher’s best guess, because […]
Anonymous Des Moines, IA Drake University Asians get offended when you cannot tell exactly which ethnicity they are, and yet it is fine/appropriate to call us “white”? “White” is not a definition, and it is definitely not a race. If I am racist for calling every Asian I see Chinese, then everyone else is racist […]
Brian Taylor Carlson Johnston, IA Drake University
Meghan Berry Des Moines, IA
Will Carpenter Drake University Des Moines, IA
Kate Kimple Submitted via Twitter: @katekimple Drake University Des Moines, IA
Charlie Chapman Spokane, WA SFCC Student
Jennifer Chain Eugene, OR
Rita Radostitz Eugene, OR
Martha Lauren Younger-Holrogd Eugene, OR
Rita Radostitz Eugene, OR
Kyra O’Kelley Atlanta, GA
Keiko McCracken Anacortes, WA I am half white, half Japanese. I can’t count the times someone has asked about my race, commented on my looks or name, or altered their response to me based on how I appear. As a child, I was teased because of my background; as an adult, I’ve had someone run […]
Hao Nguyen Durham, NC I wanted to say… Black Vietnamese. Speak english, spanish, vietnamese. Eat suong kho, pho, and corn dogs. Words that describe my mixed race/heritage children. Having to choose only 6 words, I had to put them in order of words that most describe them. Having to choose what comes first — black […]
Coco Smith Salem, OR A phenotype is not a race. There is only one human race. What people are calling race, is actually ethnicity. That is a cultural binding construct. It is that diversity that makes the world an interesting place. Without it, none of us would be here.
Anonymous Atlanta, GA Sometimes when people write articles about race, they tend to take things out of context and just take a blurb to make people outraged, when really the person was lecturing about a topic or was explaining something.
John Swissler Jr. Madison, WI It is usually said that the two topics you never raise in polite conversation are religion and politics. But my experience is that most people can have a far more useful conversation about either of those than they can about issues surrounding race. Gunnar Myrdal is still right: it remains […]
Anonymous Chadbourne Residential College
Rachel Crooks Tallahassee, FL As a woman with a Mexican mother (“Mexican” to signify “mixed race,” although my mother has been identified by some as being Native American or Filipino or ‘Asian’) and a Jamaican father (his ethnicity is never questioned, though his nationality is reduced to ‘African American’), I grew up in a strange […]
John King Catonsville, MD A wall made of no real human substance but fear. A wall where differences find a comforting place to self-justify. A wall behind which no growth occurs. A wall for the sake of a wall only.
Joycelyn Cole Terrytown, LA As a high school sophomore in 1955, I attended our school system’s Oratorical Contest. The finalists were a white girl from my high school and a black boy from St.Augustine H.S. We attended the contest in a high school auditorium. The black boy won. He walked out with a huge trophy. […]
Laura Ann Harrell St. Simons Island, GA
Barbara Kingsley Palo Alto, CA
Scott Pangrle Chimacum, WA A lot of us probably face prejudice on many levels.
David Parlier Atlanta, GA