My brilliant husband and I have been happily married for 12 years. Ironically, our beautiful wedding took place on June 12th, the anniversary of the 1967 United States Supreme Court decision Loving v. Virginia. Based on my experiences, Canada, especially my favourite city of Toronto, is a fantastic place for mixed couples to live. I resided in Kentucky and Ohio for about 6 years and I have travelled to a number of locations in the United States. In general, as a mixed couple, the behaviour of others makes me feel extremely uncomfortable, when we are in the United States. Frankly, I feel rather at ease walking hand-in-hand with my husband, when we are in Canada or Western Europe, but not in the United States.
Neither my husband nor I have done an autosomal or genealogical DNA test. Nonetheless, I think most of his ancestors came from Europe. In contrast, I suppose a majority of my ancestors came from Africa and a few from Europe. Others would probably use the socially-constructed labels of Black and White to describe us. I would describe my husband’s phenotype as beige-pink skin colour and mine as nutmeg-java-espresso skin colour.
Please join me in my struggle to remove the word “race” from our vernacular. If you must label or describe a person, use the word “phenotype”, not race. Phenotype refers to a person’s observable physical appearance.
Race: fiction, unscientific, social construct, political construct, oppressive, divisive, inaccurate, biased, justifies slavery, justifies discrimination, justifies segregation, reinforces stereotypes
Check out “Race – the Power of an Illusion” at PBS.org.
"It would seem better to define everyone as simply human beings, not with non-scientific or socially-constructed labels of superiority and inferiority, and accord them rights, duties and freedoms based solely upon their existence, rather than upon their state of pigmentation, genetic makeup, or presumed continental origin of their ancestors." (Author Unknown)