Chiyoko, USA. I am one quarter Japanese. I have auburn hair, light brown eyes, and freckles. I am five foot nine, and my skin is paler than even my white friends’ skin. But my name is Japanese, which leads people to ask me where I’m from, no, where I’m REALLY from. I’ve been called J*p, [...]
Michele J. Andrews Richmond, VA Upon seeing a picture of me with my (apparently) white grandmother, my boss said this to me. Then tried to backtrack by saying he was dumb because he was only white.
Katherine Pan San Francisco, CA
Nancy Yuan Philadelphia, PA In most people’s eyes, I’m Chinese, and therefore, naturally talented in academics. If I score well on a test, it’s normal because I’m Chinese. If my score is bad, they celebrate because they bested the “smart kid”. For once, I want someone to say, “Wow, Nancy, you must have put a [...]
Nana A. Forson Baltimore, MD Said to me, by a Caucasian male, after a brief conversation during orientation- at The Johns Hopkins University. We were both freshman, enrolled in the same class.
Derek Kendall Cullowhee, NC Why Is it when people see a African American student going to college they automatically assume that he must be here on a to play sports. On the other hand when white people are at college its only because they are smart and their parents have a good amount of money [...]
Phuong Christian Portland, OR Just because someone is Asian does not mean they inherently have the “smart genes”. I’ve seen hopes and dreams shatter because people couldn’t live up to this expectation.
Fannie Blakely Philadelphia, PA Was in a gifted class in junior high school. First day in an advance math class teacher informed me not to worry, but I would never be as smart as the other kids, that it was not in my genetic make-up. I aced that class (highest grade) and every other class [...]
Raheem Cash Alexandria, VA As a kid I spent a lot of time being one of two or three black kids in honors classes. Spent a lot of time being only black kid that played tennis. Spent a lot of time not being considered “black enough”. Well I’m not a kid anymore and fortunately I [...]
Linda Basilicato Frederick, MD My mother’s comment on my new, polite, handsome, articulate, smart, college boyfriend in 1993. “I had black friends–in school.” (My mother’s compromise)
Anonymous Inspired by The Help
Norene Lealamanua Portland, OR My very white family was confused by my choices until they fell head over heels for my exceptionally smart, beautiful brown children!