Posted tagged ‘racial discrimination’

I wonder…..

January 2, 2009

I found part of this posting in another one I had written last summer.  Interesting in that these things are always on my mind….

My children are Asian in a Caucasian world. It sounds like such a simple statement. But it’s really not. People who adopt outside of their own race tend to see a child. Not an Asian child or a Black child or a Hispanic child….or any of the combinations in between. We see just a plain old child whose toes we have kissed and whose hair we have learned to style. We see the child that stresses about oatmeal for breakfast and spelling tests and social studies projects. A child.

And since they don’t really see themselves very often, as a rule, I think it takes a while for a transracially adopted child to see that their parents are different from them. My son was blessed to attend a small daycare that encompassed a myriad of shades in it’s clientele for a couple of years. The director/teacher tried very hard to foster acceptance and awareness of differences. She worried that my son wasn’t aware of his. After spending a week or two collecting pictures of faces of many races, she set out having her students compile a mural about themselves. They were to select pictures to glue on their posters beginning with a face that looked like theirs. My son looked them all over carefully and then selected one of a Black man. His teacher tried to get him to exchange it with the Asian face she had found just for him but he said ‘no’….that the one he had was correct because he had black hair too.

Because we knew the state of things in his elementary school, we started ‘desensitizing’ him to looks and stares and questions. We hoped that we were giving him tools to help people understand and to make him proud of being ‘different.’ We must have done our job well because it never crossed our minds to do the same with our daughter. The first time she was teased about her ‘Chinese Eyes’ as a middle schooler, it devasted her….and ME.

I am wondering if having these two children in my family helped me to not see our new President elect as a ‘black man.’  I confess that I was seriously color blind about the whole election.   Seriously.    I was more intrigued with the possiblity of a woman holding the office.  And now that my children are moving into the dating world…’going’ to dances with other people…..I wonder how many of them will see the person inside…and not the ‘chinese eyes’ and skin color.   How many will see past all that to the goofy sense of humor and loving heart?  I wonder what would happen if the entire world were color blind?  I wonder what kind of world we would live in then?

Advertisements