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Pre-2008 Posts

Bills of Rights for People in Racially Mixed Families

Six of my children are playing “gangpile” in this picture, taken years ago. My baby girl in the diaper, climbing up the stool to get to the top of the gangpile,  is almost 17 now. 🙂

Light-skinned girl is waiting for me to proceed with theorizing being the white mother of biracial children.  I think my first project will be a bill of rights for women situated as I am, along the lines of this bill of rights for biracial people that light-skinned girl recently posted to her blog, written by Maria P.P. Root in 1996.

Which is all to say, I’m on it.  🙂

I have the right

  • not to justify my existence in this world
  • not to keep the races separate within me
  • not to be responsible for people’s discomfort with my physical ambiguity
  • not to justify my ethnic legitimacy
  • to identify myself differently than strangers expect me to identify
  • to identity myself differently than how my parents identity me
  • to identify myself differently than my brothers and sisters
  • to identify myself differently in different situations
  • to create a vocabulary to communicate about being multiracial
  • to change my identity over my lifetime–and more than once
  • to have loyalties and identify with more than one group of people
  • to freely chooose whom I befriend and love


7 thoughts on “Bills of Rights for People in Racially Mixed Families

  1. I have friends who are biracial or with biracial children and it isn’t easy for any of them. Through them I have also learned so many valuable things. Friends and loved ones are the most important things in the world and what is inside people matters, not their looks or any other such nonsense.

    I love the photo. I laughed out loud when I spotted the littlest one and her purpose! Ah, children, bless them for so many good laughs that have helped many a sad and weary heart.

    Posted by Danu | January 24, 2008, 9:29 am
  2. I like it. I’ll keep on reading!

    Posted by Heidi Durrow | February 3, 2008, 8:41 pm
  3. Seems reasonable to me. I assume I have a whole pile of rights, and that’s just the law I lay down period. Guess we feminists like lists of laws, since women are so trampled upon by laws in general. Men have made so many stupid laws, that I think it’s a good time for all of us to make our own laws!

    Posted by Satsuma | February 4, 2008, 3:03 am
  4. HOLY CUTE! How did I miss this post?! What a great photo! I hope you have an enlarged print of that on a mantel somewhere!

    Posted by K.A. | February 9, 2008, 9:01 pm
  5. HA! It is cute, isn’t it?

    No, no prints on mantles, sadly, just rubbermaids and rubbermaids and cardboard boxes and did I say rubbermaids, and you name it of zillions of photos. I’ve never been the pictures-of-the-kids-on-the-walls-and-mantles kind of a person; I never really got that. I mean, my kids were all right there in the house and nearby so why do I need their pictures on the walls?

    However, now that most of my kids are adults and have moved out, and I only have three at home and one of those will graduate high school next year, I admit, I’ve begun singing a somewhat different tune, and I do have a small, yet burgeoning, collection of photos atop my hutch.


    Posted by womensspace | February 9, 2008, 9:24 pm
  6. I love how that little one is trying to climb up (or down) to get in the action (or avoid the action).

    Posted by ekittyglendower | February 9, 2008, 9:39 pm
  7. Yeah we didn’t keep albums or many displayed frames either. Our visual history lies in 3 shoeboxes in my mother’s closet! But, sounds like the perfect time to get that shot blown up! Seriously adorable.

    Posted by K.A. | February 9, 2008, 9:52 pm

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