Joel Anthony Murray, Sr.
Iranians in DC thought I was Iranian. A Tunisian on a train with me to NY thought I was Tunisian. A Pakistani in Baltimore thought I was Pakistani. A Vietnamese coworker thought I was Middle-Eastern. A Nepalese coworker thought I was Indian or Pakistani. I work with people from many countries and everyone not from America who has expressed an opinion about my origins has thought that I was from someplace other than America. Once a flight attendant handed me customs forms for non-citizens when I was returning to the States from Italy. In Nigeria many people have been completely confused about my ethnicity. Many times in many places around the US and Puerto Rico it has been assumed that I was Puerto Rican. I have even been scolded by Puerto Ricans for “not knowing the language” when I could not converse with them in Spanish (smile). It goes on and on. However, European-Americans and African-Americans on the Easy Coast and in the Southeastern US (I have not traveled much to other parts of my country) usually identify me as black or African-American. Every now and then someone from this group will think I am of mixed race or Puerto Rican. I am of mixed heritage including African, Native American and European. The Race Card Project has launched a very interesting discussion about race. Thanks!