A year was a long time to wait, but here’s what I was looking for in the 2010 U.S. Census. Simone and Nadia are part of a small but growing group of Americans.
Nine million people reported more than one race in the 2010 Census and made up about 3 percent of the total population. Ninety-two percent of people who reported multiple races provided exactly two races in 2010; white and black was the largest multiple-race combination. An additional 8 percent of the two or more races population reported three races and less than 1 percent reported four or more races.
Three quarters of multiple race combinations were comprised of four groups in 2010: white and black (1.8 million), white and “some other race” (1.7 million), white and Asian (1.6 million), and white and American Indian or Alaska Native (1.4 million).
Source: U.S. Census
Curious Little Girl to Simone: Is that your Mommy?
Curious Little Girl to Simone’s Mommy: You’re getting browner.
Simone’s Mommy: I was already brown.
Curious Little Girl to Simone’s Mommy: And you had a white child?
Simone’s Mommy: Her Daddy’s white.
Curious Little Girl: Her Daddy’s white? Wow.
That was a first.
I have a pithy comeback when adults ask such questions. I don’t think that will work with children. I could have taken her aside and told her more than she wanted to know, but her Mommy may not have liked that.
I love the way children think. This little girl who happened to be black accepted Simone as my daughter. She just could not process the color difference. Adults may peg me as an adoptive mother or the nanny. This little girl figured I had a deep, dark tan. I can work with that.
I had a lovely chat with Michelle McCrary on the Is That Your Child? podcast. We talked about the Critical Mixed Race Studies conference, interracial relationships in the Deep South, and some blog and book projects. I only had a few Did-I-Just-Say-That moments. Did I really say that my husband “allows” me to work on the blog and book? Did I say that? Umm, I had better stick to being a writer, where I can revise and revise and revise. In the meantime, someone please install self-editing 5.0 in my hard drive. I certainly need it. A link to the podcast is below. Enjoy!
We covered a lot of ground. Share your thoughts on any of the above in the comments section.
Is That Your Child? is a live weekly podcast on Blog Talk Radio for moms and dads of color to mixed children. The podcast is hosted by Michelle McCrary. She is a reformed and former entertainment publicist who made the transition from working mom to stay-at-home mom almost one year ago. As a woman of color in a mixed marriage and as the new mom to a mixed child, she wanted to connect with other moms of color to share resources, advice and experiences. Thanks to a powerful online community of moms and dads of color to mixed children, ITYC boasts more than 2,000 listeners, and counting.
A few weeks ago, Nadia revealed her latest work of art: the letter H made out of pennies and quarters.
Just the other day, she demanded to write her name on a birthday card. To my surprise, she made five letters. The N and the I, complete with a dot, looked like real letters, and she made a point of putting stems on the As and the D in her name. We have not been teaching her how to do this. Of course, it probably doesn’t hurt that Simone writes notes that are posted all over our home.
I am so tickled. It’s time to teach Nadia how to read.
I am not a sports fan. Sure, I watch football games with my hubby and cheer at the appropriate times. Other than that, I don’t keep up with what’s happening on or off the field, court or diamond. Still, I was intrigued by a matter of race that found its way into my inbox.
Jalen Rose, a former NBA player who is now an analyst at ESPN, said Duke University only recruits black players who are “Uncle Toms.” There’s nothing new there. People call other people names every day. What struck me was Grant Hill’s well-written and thoughtful response. Mr. Hill is a Duke alum who plays forward for the Phoenix Suns. If everyone who encountered a racial stereotype responded like Mr. Hill, race would be much less of an issue in this country. Enjoy!
Here we go. U.S. Census figures show sharp increases in interracial couples, especially in the South. From a front page article in the New York Times:
In the first comprehensive accounting of multiracial Americans since statistics were first collected about them in 2000, reporting from the 2010 census, made public in recent days, shows that the nation’s mixed-race population is growing far more quickly than many demographers had estimated, particularly in the South and parts of the Midwest. That conclusion is based on the bureau’s analysis of 42 states; the data from the remaining eight states will be released this week.
New York Times, March 20, 2011
I am not surprised. Are you? More importantly, what do you think this means for interracial families?
The Harvard Half-Asian People’s Association will host its third annual conference on mixed-race politics and identity issues, “So…What Are You, Anyway?” (SWAYA) on Friday, March 25 and Saturday, March 26, 2011, on the Harvard University campus. The event is open to the public and will feature guest lecturers who will speak on issues involving multiracial identity.
The conference will include lectures given by the Dean of Harvard College and other Harvard professors, as well as student panels and discussion groups. Last year, the event drew more than 100 students and guests from colleges and cities around the Boston area.
SWAYA will culminate with a special gala dinner in honor of Jeff Chiba Stearns, the 2010 recipient of the Cultural Pioneer Award. ,Stearns is the director of the award-winning documentary “One Big Hapa Family” and an international spokesperson on mixed-race identity. His short films have been screened at film festivals around the world and have garnered more than 30 awards.
Tickets to the gala are $7 for students, $15 for others.
For more information, contact Caitlin Low (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Ashley Bach (email@example.com).