I was watching America’s Next Top Model online this morning when Z informed me that she didn’t want to watch that show because there were “too many black people.” Extreme intervention coming right up.
I told her father in a public place so he couldn’t totally go off on her. He asked her what race she thought she was. She said, “I’m White!” with conviction.
He told her to look at me. He asked if we could all agree that I was white. Since I burn through my 70 SPF sunblock on a regular basis and he routinely calls me Paleface and Albino Girl, this was not a tough question. I held out my hand and he put his over top of mine. Z stared at our hands. He is much darker than me. I’m all northern European stock. He’s southern European and Native American. He’s darker than some of our black friends. Z was shocked. He told her that he is a brown person. Does that make him a bad person? She said no. Then he explained that since he is her father that she isn’t totally white. Her hand color was in between ours. She was quite taken aback. She is going to a new school soon and her teachers and many fellow students are not white. That seemed to shake her up. I think since her mom is white that she never considered herself to be anything else. That’s fine if she hadn’t thought of it before but being automatically dismissive of anything that people of color do is not.