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The dreaded "race" checkbox - Page 3

post #41 of 54
I have a weird story about this. My mom is black and my dad is white so generally they chose other when filling out forms for us. For some reason, at my youngest sister's elementary school, they didn't allow it and so the administrator chose black for her.

Now my sister has dyspraxia along with another learning disability (though they can't pin it down) and needed speech therapy. For some reason, the school was not able enroll her in the therapy because she was black (perhaps they were worried about political correctness and ebonics- this was five years ago). So my mom went in and changed my sister's race to caucasian on her paperwork and lo and behold, she was enrolled without a problem.
post #42 of 54
when i was little i remember the boxes were usually just black white and asian.
it would drive me mad.
now im pleased i have the option of native american and hispanic. making filling out forms so much easier for me...

but there is no easy box for my german-romanian-native-mexican daughters

argh
post #43 of 54

the dreaded race checklist

HOW ABOUT THROWING THE LOT OF THEM ,AND EVERYONE STATING :THE HUMAN RACE. I MAY BE THINKING OUT OF THE BOX BUT IF YOU DONATE YOUR ORGANS DO YOU THINK FOR ONE MOMENT THAT THE DYING RECIPIENT ASKS -WHAT WAS THE RACE OF THE DONOR?? YOU BET THEY DO NOT.CHILDREN DONT RECOGNISE DIFFERENCES IN THEIR PRESCHOOL FRIENDS UNTIL SOCIETY REALLY UNDERSCORES THE MAIN DIFFERENCES TO THEM. MY THINKING MAY BE A LITTLE NAIVE BUT WHEN MY CHILDREN AND NOW GRANDCHILDREN ASKED -WHAT RACE DO I BELONG TO AM I SCOTS OR ENGLISH ? -I ALWAYS SAID YOUR RACE IS THE HUMAN RACE.I MAY BE A SILLY SIMPLE OLD LADY BUT -WELL.
post #44 of 54

we are in the same boat

My family is definitely in the same boat. I encountered the "only check one box" when I registered my son at the public pre K. I checked both, and they told me that I need to only select one, or they would select it based off of his appearance. I am African American, my son is biracial (multiethnic) black and white. However, he "looks" white, very fair, straight blonde hair and grey/hazel eyes. I was frustrated, but in the end I ended up checking "black" because, in the long run, it will most likely be one of the deciding factors for the principal when we ask if he can stay at that school when he enters elementary school (the preK he's in is not our home school.) They will use him being considered "black" as a way to boost their minority enrollment, fulfilling requirements.
I feel whenever another group mixes with black, it is most often deferred to the offspring being labeled black because of our country's racial history.
post #45 of 54
Technically, I'm not from a "bi-racial" family, but I do think that checking those damn boxes just helps perpetuate racism. If I'm required to check a box and there's no other (for human), then I just pick one at random to screw up their stupid statistics!
Grrr. . .
post #46 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by maddie thunderclap View Post
HOW ABOUT THROWING THE LOT OF THEM ,AND EVERYONE STATING :THE HUMAN RACE. I MAY BE THINKING OUT OF THE BOX BUT IF YOU DONATE YOUR ORGANS DO YOU THINK FOR ONE MOMENT THAT THE DYING RECIPIENT ASKS -WHAT WAS THE RACE OF THE DONOR?? YOU BET THEY DO NOT.CHILDREN DONT RECOGNISE DIFFERENCES IN THEIR PRESCHOOL FRIENDS UNTIL SOCIETY REALLY UNDERSCORES THE MAIN DIFFERENCES TO THEM. MY THINKING MAY BE A LITTLE NAIVE BUT WHEN MY CHILDREN AND NOW GRANDCHILDREN ASKED -WHAT RACE DO I BELONG TO AM I SCOTS OR ENGLISH ? -I ALWAYS SAID YOUR RACE IS THE HUMAN RACE.I MAY BE A SILLY SIMPLE OLD LADY BUT -WELL.
I get where you're coming from, but this is only an easy to point to make if you are white. Life is different for people of other races and trying to 'white wash' everyone into one group doesn't embrace our differences. Of course we should love everyone and accept everyone, but honestly, my daughter notices different colors of skin (her father is Latino, yet she looks white like me) and I am glad we can talk about all the wonderful variations there are when the question comes up.
This is just something my husband always talks about so I thought I'd share my (his) 2 cents.

As far as checking the box goes, I always check Hispanic and get weird looks because my kids don't look Hispanic. It can be hard! I would like to check more than one box too.
post #47 of 54
Wow, this is something I haven't even really thought of since we have only had to deal with this for birth certificates. I'm Irish, and DH is Filipino. DS looks like a clone of DH, and DD looks like a mix. If I ever encounter a form like this for the kids without an "other" option, I'll either leave it blank, or make my own right there on the form. It seems completely ridiculous not to have an "other" option!
post #48 of 54

the dreaded race checklist

hi lawrence i know we dont have the the colour race checkbox thing here in scotland and the scots have a great acceptance of differing ethnic cultures i must say that.BUT they have a long standing hatred of the english and a vicious centuries old protestant/catholic hatred going on.we live near a town which is so protestant that a child with a catholic name attending the school would i swear be beaten up.we were in the army and our children brought up in england and germany and when we returned home and our children started at school here(our checkbox says scottish english irish welch or ethnic)my son was set upon with shouts of -get the english -and badly beaten his head jumped on repeatedly and that was a good area.the teacher called him english michael! all because by his accent they thought he was english. i am not downplaying difficulties which non whites are subjected to honestly but you know even if EVERY person in this world was of the same culture and colour certain deplorable types of people would use something to fuel their ignorant bigotry be that colour of eyes ,hair or differing shades of their skin colour.i myself believe that human diversity of racial type is a gift from my creator and it is the badness of awful people for whatever twisted reason which singles out particular races for hatred.i dont understand why schools have to request a ticked box.i have probably havered off at a tangent and i do apologise i will blame it on scottish brain freeze:
post #49 of 54
It's annoying to figure out which box to check if they only let you pick one. But they normally only want to know for either statistical reasons or for benifit reasons. Such as qualifying for something extra because you are a minority kind of thing. So with my boys, I will check both white and hispanic if possible, but hispanic if I have to choose. But if I have the chance I also add that they are about 1/8th American indian as well. But not often can I check 3 boxes. lol.
I have talked to my boys about race though. I tell them that the color of your skin is caused by the amount of pigment your body makes. And that EVERYONE is a different shade of brown. Some are darker and some are lighter. Except for the few people in this world who have a rare condition that makes their skin not produce pigment and they are called albino's. Other than that, everyone is brown! I don't want them feeling like someone is different than them because of the color of their skin. I feel my kids are very lucky to have the extended family they do. There are so many different sides to our families. My family is culturally ignorant when it comes to minoritys. But we are a southern family, from Georgia that was mixed with the cultural aspects of being raised in Detroit, Michigan.
Then add to that my husband was raised in NYC but is full El Salvadorian. However his mother remarried a Haitian man and had 3 kids with him. Plus his father remarried a Mexican woman. So on that side they have the culture of the city, plus the culture of their own family. Grandmother who only speaks spanish, and a household that speaks 4 different languages. I was pretty amazed with it. I do believe that eventually our country will integrate enough that this sort of thing becomes more of a normal. But as it is, when I was young it was unacceptable, and now it's common and tolerated. Some areas more than others of course.
My husband and I are military and have been many places and have seen just how well tollerated it is in different areas. Or how not tollerated in other areas. But I believe it's changing. And fast too! I want my children to be part of the solution and not part of the problem and I think we need to stop worrying about what race our kids are and start worrying about the details that matter. Kwim?
post #50 of 54

Annoying

I always thought these questions were annoying. I used to leave race and sex blank years ago, because I had heard they can't force you to answer. Someone once told me it was purely for statistical reasons and got annoyed that I didn't answer. So, no I generally answer, but I am annoyed by it. I may go back to leaving it blank. I am caucasian female. I married a hispanic who is neither non black or non white...he's just hispanic...maybe part native indian...who knows? Darker than me, but we don't really know how to classify it. My kids get checked off as hispanic since they have a spanish last name. But if you want to get technical, we aren't really sure what we should be checking off. Everyone can check off whatever they want, so why does it matter??
post #51 of 54
I'm learning to hold back my laughter with the "race box". I'm Native American and my husband is Irish and our three children are all different colors ( actually my oldest is from my first marriage which makes him NA and Polish ). Anyway, our school's secretary has stopped asking me because when I registered our 3 year old, she said "you left the race box blank...what is his nationality" and I gave her the complete family history. She gave me this look like I just fell out of the sky and said do you mind if I just check other.

gerlassie
post #52 of 54
mmm
i thought "race" was a thing and "ethnicity" another as in
caucasian, negroid, mongoloid race
irish, scandinavian, massai, brazilian...ethnicity
post #53 of 54
I always check both. I've never had to choose...I think. otherwise if I can I decline to respond. (for the kids, I mean, I am white typical Midwest Euro mix, DH is African. actually grew up in Africa, rest of family is there.)

that's another thread entirely, the difference between say, my children and their family/family life/culture etc. etc. and oh, probably 80% of the other children who are their particular racial mixture in my area.

It'll be interesting to see what happens as they grow up and start to identify themselves and know this.....
post #54 of 54
Intersting thread, If a school was in a country / area where they had to had a percentage of all races represented then I could understand it or even if it were for funding reasons but otherwise . . .? Why the Heck? If a particuar race is more prone to a rare illness or condition it is understandable I suppose but if it affects yuor child, this would be a medical disclosure anyway.
If it were me, altho it doesn't afffect us, I WOULD tick two boxes if it applied and let admin sort it out whatever way they liked! But in a nw school I can understand the OP's reluctance. I would be writing a letter tho.
Otherwise I would add in a own box, mark it other/mixed and tick it!
Here, except in census forms, where you can actually tick two boxs, other forms usually have origin - ie. Native country, EU, N. Amer, Africa, Asia etc.
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