Being Black and southern, educated engineer

923525_10151423139863807_1400192644_nKristen Ellerbe,
Richmond, VA.

Calling me an Oreo or not really black, or basically a white girl means that you define some part of my personality, attitude, preferences, or demeanor as being owned and attributed solely to white people. Is it my intelligence, my sense of style, or how I speak? Is it because I’m well read, interested in politics, or surround myself with more than just other black people. If you know or not, my choice to laugh, ignore it, or otherwise not act is to not embarrass you because I love you. Even in your ignorance. I am BLACK. Yes, I am also Filipino. Just like I’m also a woman and an American. Do not belittle my blackness because I don’t come from an urban culture. That is aimed at all people. What you call white, I just see as part of the culture I was raised in: middle class, educated Southern culture. I was raised deeply imbued with that STEM fields give us freedom. My father raised me and I knew I would be an engineer. So now I am an adult engineer, in traditional social sorority, and graduated from an Ag-Tech public university. Yes, I listen to country music. Yes, I am well-spoken. Yes, I am 25 and own my own home. No, I don’t consider myself white. Yes, I am marrying a black man. Yes, he is an engineer. Yes, I read the newspaper and drink pumpkin lattes. I wear Lilly Pulitzer and bows in my hair. I wear my hair natural and it is not an afro. But these are things that do not define my race. They define my culture and it is not a white culture. It is my culture which inherently makes is black.

So just stop. ‪#‎endrant‬


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