So what does the term ‘interracial’ mean to you, as it applies to marriages and relationships? Is it truly meant, and used as such, to mean between two different races? Or just two contrastingly different colors of people?
Last night was the last night of HIST2302. They did the last of the class presentations to finish off the night. One of the presentations was on interracial marriage. Sherita, a black girl with biracial kids from a white ex-husband, covered the issues facing interracial relationships, how it was outlawed at one time in many states, and how biracial kids have to cope. Yeah, okay all that info was interesting, fine. The one thing that I began to think about during and after that presentation was, what exactly does interracial relationships, as applied to society, really, truly mean? Is it something labeled for black/white couples? Is it for different races/ethnicities only if there is enough of a difference in skin tone or facial features? Is it only if there are two conspicuously different cultures involved?
In the mainland US, okay, yes we see a lot of Black/White, Black/Asian, White/Asian, White/Hispanic, couples. Think about those racial groups. You conjure up very different and easily identifiable differences in each that mark them as separate from the other. Skin color. Language. Recognizable features. Very likely very contrasting neighborhood origins for the most part. Well… what about, say, here in Hawaii, Chinese/Japanese couples? Filipino/Hawaiian? What about my wife and myself, Filipino/Chamorro? Granted, I am Chamorro in background environment and self-identification of culture, but by blood I am Filipino. Does that mean my kids are technically biracial kids? Did they miss out on some biracial upbringing trauma because they are a mix of black hair and brown skin with black hair and brown skin as opposed to mixing blond and afro black and white with black skin tones?
As far as I can tell, in real terms as applied to everyday REAL life, interracial means two people who look different. So the label “interracial” is totally inaccurate. And it’s only an issue concerning mainlanders for the most part. Well, except for that Isei mother-in-law of a husband darker than their Japanese lineage (not just black… usually their rule, from what I’ve heard is don’t marry anyone darker than you).