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The dreaded "race" checkbox - Page 2

post #21 of 54
ugh-the dreaded race box.

my favorite is when people automatically check it for me. they always get it wrong.

for my kids i choose other or mixed race or i write in an answer.
post #22 of 54
OK, now I am mad too. Just looked at an application for a public school in my area and the box is there. Check only one it says. There is no "other" option! And in small print it says they are required by law to report it. I am also interested in the census protocol. Is what this school is doing illegal? I don't want to choose a race for my children, that is absurd!
post #23 of 54
I have always checked "other" for DD and for myself.
post #24 of 54
Originally Posted by CarsonBookworm View Post
I have always checked "other" for DD and for myself.
What about when there is no "other"? Do you just write it in?
post #25 of 54
i am fortunate that my dd is yung enough not to have to face definitions yet. i don't know how i would handle it. i think i would definitely let her choose what she wants to be defined as. or, if she is anything like me, i refuse to check anything. i don't let them have the satisfaction of making generalizations about black folk based on my answers to surveys and soforth.
post #26 of 54
I dislike this question sooo much! I am white and have always checked other and wrote in human. DH on the other hand is bi-racial I'm not sure what he puts down, when we were filling out the birth certificate mine said human and his was blank, the nurse decided to fill it in on her own. I don't know why but having to check the little box irks me, I don't know what I will do for DD when she is older.
post #27 of 54
Originally Posted by USAmma View Post
What do you all do? How do you handle it emotionally and how do your children handle it?
I have yet, after 27 years, to ever check a race box. It isn't legally required anywhere I've ever been. When they ask, I just say no for myself and my children.

My mother had this arguement with the social security office when I was born - she refused to pick a race, and they refused to issue me a card - so she chose every race plus other, and wrote a few things in, too. I guess legally I'm everything possible.

(although I did work at an elementary school last year, and when the kids had to fill out those bubble sheets for state testing - the kids who left race blank had it filled in 'for them' by a school admin. The admin just picked whatever they looked like. Made me realize all my years in school of refusing to fill that out were probably useless.)
post #28 of 54

Same boat here

I'm also white with half Indian children... I check Asian too but feel kind of weird about it, they are not oriental.. Or I check other and don't specify on the line provided. race questions suck next time I will write human on the other line
post #29 of 54
If they "make" you check a box, tell them you can't for legal reasons. It would not be full disclosure to check only one or the other. Let them know you refuse to commit a crime.

I always write "human" too, but I'm white. If I were a minority or 1/2 I'd check whatever would benefit me. I think society would owe me at least that much for whatever other $%&# I'd have to deal with as a result of ignorance.
post #30 of 54
write in
" the human race "
post #31 of 54
I always check Native American if that is an option, unless Other with a blank is available, then I check that and write in "Human".
post #32 of 54
I've refused to check that box since college, and I'll teach my kids to do the same. They are insulting!
post #33 of 54
I'm another one who would refuse to check the box. I was recently filling out forms for my DS' U.S. passport and on that form it was written that checking the race box was optional. That's the only time I would have relented because I really want my DS to get his US passport without any issues, so I was glad it was optional and I was able to leave it blank.

My DS is caucasian by the way, for me it's not a problem of not knowing which box to tick but that I think it's pretty offensive to be asking people what "race" they are and to be listing percentages of how many of each race in a town or school, etc.
post #34 of 54
I wish they had an "Ambiguously Brown" category. I swear that's what I am! People have assumed me to be nearly every race/nationality under the sun (usually dependent upon the company I am in at the time).
My mother told me when I was very little that I should check Black because in this country, that would always be what I was considered. I'm ok with that. It feels a little wrong to not be representing myself 100% accurately, but I also accept that no form can be a 100% accurate representation of who I am. It just has never seemed something to get worked up about. If they let me pick more than one, I do, if not I check Black/African American.

I do think they are pretty useless information wise, why can't we just get rid of them all together?
post #35 of 54
I can't remember exactly, but I think our school district allows us to choose more than one option, or there was a "multiracial" check box.

When I was younger, I either checked other, or I would flip a coin to choose between white or Asian.

It didn't matter to me what I was acknowledged as on paper, because I know who and what I was inside.
post #36 of 54
At my kids school, they let you check as many as you want, but they also have a biracial box (which I think is pretty cool).
post #37 of 54
Well, in my family, we ALL check multi-racial. Even though we aren't ALL. My DD and I are caucasian, DH is hispanic and DSs are mixed. It's just easier to do it that way. We don't separate each other, we are one family. And besides, if anyone asks, I am a mutt anyway...lol. English, Irish, Welsh, Dutch, German, Scottish, Blackfoot and Italian. Mixed enough?
post #38 of 54
I don't like the boxes because I don't think they should have to choose; they are two races! If I don't have to I don't pick them or state a race. If I have to I check the boxes for both white and African-American, or if it is write-in I put B/W for black and white. I usually do that for government forms since they usually need that info.

For school I think my children are automatically considered black. I think at the doctor's office where I take them (it's part of a children's hospital) they are automatically considered white or Caucasian since I am white. I don't like it but I don't make a big deal of it. If I feel like it I'll say something nicely just so I can register my opinion!
post #39 of 54
Wow, I've never had to check these boxes for my children, I don't think. From what I remember, their birth certificate didn't ask for race.

I'm a mix of Asian races, and my DH is british, so I guess I would check 'other' for the kids if that were an option. I haven't even really thought about it what I would do if there wasn't an 'other' or 'biracial' option and I was forced to choose. . . .
post #40 of 54
Originally Posted by Alison's Mom View Post
I haven't even really thought about it what I would do if there wasn't an 'other' or 'biracial' option and I was forced to choose. . . .
I'm wondering when a person would be forced to choose. Couldn't you just not answer at all? As I posted, I didn't even have to check it for my DS' passport/U.S. nationality so I'm curious, are there some places (like schools) that require you to check the box? Could they really do anything if you refused? It doesn't seem like it would be legal to require it.
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