“You can pass.” Lifetime identity struggle.

IMG_4465Erica Jameson,
Ashland, OR.

My parents adopted five muti-racial children, something unheard of in the rural mountain town we lived in. Between being confused about being different, to occasional thoughtless racism, the line “You can pass [for white]” still makes me uneasy. Does this mean that I should want to? I still don’t know.

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2 Responses to "“You can pass.” Lifetime identity struggle."
  1. Brenda says:

    Erica I am Chinese and European American and grew up in Eugene OR. I also had many comments about how unAsian or white I looked. Sometimes I could pass as white. But it really offended me to think I should try to be more “white”. I think the assumption I don’t like in these comments is that I should want to hide my identity in order to make myself more palatable to white people.

  2. barry irving says:

    …passing for White is an assumption and it is connected to the notion that White is most desirable. I have not ever met anyone who truly wanted to be White if they were born as other than White…It just doesn’t happen much. people have confusin because society grades everything…It’s not about society…it’s about you. Constitutionally, you can call yourself what ever you want. Officially, there are limited categories that really need to be further defined, but that is for Census. Many Whites use Hispanic numbers as white…some Hispanics may have white skin, but they are Hispanic, which is a different language, culture and ethnic mix!

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