March 31, 2010 Leave a comment
About 100-yard-dash: I got tired of the Other box, so why not make up a race?
2010 Census, still, does not have the right combo for us Mishmash Mutts.
November 27, 2009 1 Comment
It’s the kind of race battle we’re still trying to wrap our hands around in parts of the U.S. (consider the mixed race couple that was denied a marriage license in Louisiana…and that’s in 2009! Who forgot to tell that judge that we have a multiracial President?)
Lou Jing is Mandarin-speaking 20-year-old who competed in Shanghai’s version of American Idol. She’s the focus of a passionate public debate: what does it mean to be Chinese. And it’s all about the color of her skin. Lou Jing’s mother is Chinese, her father an African-American whom she’s never met.
For sure, it’s a controversy that boosts ratings. Wouldn’t Simon Cowell be all over this?
China doesn’t easily accept mixed-race children as Chinese. When a child is born the parents have to register the child as belonging to one of the fifty-six government-approved ethnic groups. There are no mixed-race categories. We have that same battle here in the U.S., only we have four groups: Black, White, Asian, Hispanic. Sometimes Native American and Pacific Islander are bunched in with Asian. There’s always the Other box – that’s me. You can read my brief bio here about what I used to write on race forms: 100-yard dash.
On rare occasion, a form lists Multiracial. We need that on EVERY form.
While the U.S. is just now rising out of its shame about race-crossing, what happened here to the Chinese pride about MADE IN CHINA?
July 17, 2009 2 Comments
In May, with much media fanfare, a 95% complete fossil of a 47-million-year-old human ancestor, a lemur, was revealed to the world after two years of secret study by an international team of scientists. The scientists say that the fossil’s significant state of preservation gives an unprecedented glimpse into early human evolution.
Scientists are divided on the interpretation of this discovery. One approach to this is that this is no missing link, rather it is a twig on the uncertain number of missing branches in our tree of evolution.
Leaping lemurs! This discovery gave me cause to think deeper about our instinct to belong, to know our roots.
Heck, I’d be happy to just know one generation back, maybe even two. Not that I don’t identify with human race, but don’t we all like to know where we come from?
For most of my life, I lived with unknown genetics. That’s the case with many adopted people, or anyone else with a missing never-met parent, like a divorced parent they never knew. I eventually found the link to my birth mother’s side, but my birth father…who knows. Maybe I’m in the sponge category? I’ve soaked up pools and puddles of every color…and I like it.
I’ve come to believe that even when we know our genetics, it’s up to each of us to build our sense of identity and belonging. No one else can do it for us, even if we are branded with an identity at birth, like race or gender. We still have to define how and where we belong in our worlds, what fits and what doesn’t fit.
Bella Abzug (1920-1988), the former U.S. Congresswoman and civil rights activist from the Bronx, made an insightful comment on why she wore hats, for which she was known. “I began wearing hats as a young lawyer because it helped me to establish my professional identity. Before that, whenever I was at a meeting, someone would ask me to get coffee.”
Thought for the day: Best said by Arthur Ashe, professional tennis player (1943-1993):: My potential is more than can be expressed within the bounds of my race or ethnic identity.
I’ll add to that — gender and any other category of identity, personal or professional.
May 28, 2009 6 Comments
Here’s a partial list of well know multi-raced people. Source: web, library, and word-on-the-street research.
Drop a comment here to add what and whom you know.
Before we start: President Barack Obama, father from Kenya, mother has Irish roots
2. Alexander Hamilton, mixed-race mother, Scottish father
4. Amerie Rogers, singer/actress Korean, African American
5. Ann Curry, newscaster Japanese, Irish
6. Apolo Anton Ohno, Olympic speed skater, Japanese, Caucasian
7. Ben Kingsley, actor, Russian, Jewish and Indian descent
8. Ben Leber, NFL player (Minnesota Vikings), Japanese, Caucasian
9. Brandon Lee, martial artist/actor, Chinese, German, Swedish
10. Brian Ching, MLS player (San Jose Earthquakes), Chinese, Caucasian
11. Bruce Lee, martial artist/actor/philosopher, Chinese, German
12. Chad Morton NFL player (NY Giants), Japanese, African-American
15. Cindy Burbridge, Miss Thailand 1996 Thai, British, Indian
17. Danny Graves, MLB player, Vietnamese, Caucasian
18. Dave Bautista, wrestler, Filipino, Greek
19. Dave Roberts, MLB player, Japanese, African-American
22. Devon Aoki, actress/model, Japanese, British, German
23. Dorothy Dandridge, actress, Jamaican, Mexican, Native American, Black, Caucasian
26. Eddie Van Halen, musician, Dutch, Indonesian
27. Enrique Iglesias, singer, Filipino, Spanish
29. Françoise Yip, actress/model, Chinese, French-Canadian
31. Gloria Reuben, actress, black mother and white father
34. Hines Ward, NFL player, Korean, African-American
36. Jaime Ong, actress/model Chinese, Australian
37. Jane March , actress/model Chinese, British, Spanish
38. Jasmine Guy, actress, black father and white mother
42. Jerome Williams MLB player, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Hawaiian, Spanish, African-American, British
43. Jodie Ann Patterson, Playboy Playmate, Indonesian, British, Swiss
44. Johnny Damon, MLB player, Thai, British
45. Karen Mok, actress/singer, Chinese, German, Persian, Welsh
47. Keanu Reeves, actor, Chinese, Hawaiian, British
49. Kelly Hu, actress/model, Chinese, Hawaiian, British
50. Kiana Tom, fitness trainer/model, Chinese, Hawaiian, Irish
51. Kristen Kruek, actress, Indonesian-Chinese, Dutch
54. Lola Corwin, Playboy playmate/model, Korean, Irish
55. Lou Diamond Phillips, actor, Chinese, Filipino, Hawaiian, Cherokee, Scottish, Irish, Spanish
56. Maggie Quigley, actress/model, Vietnamese, Irish
57. Malcolm Gladwell, writer, Half English, half Jamaican
58. Marc Dasacos, martial artist/actor, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Spanish, Irish
61. Mark-Paul Gosselaar, actor, Dutch, Indonesian
62. Maya Rudolph, comedian, black mother and white father daughter of the soul singer Minnie Riperton and Jewish/American composer/songwriter Richard Rudolph
64. Mike Shinoda, musician (Linkin Park), Japanese, Russian
65. Namie Amuro, singer, Japanese, Italian
66. Naomi Campbell, model, Chinese, Jamaican
69. Olivia Lufkin, singer, Japanese, Caucasian
72. Phoebe Cates, actress, Filipina, Russian-Jewish
73. Rachael Yamagata, singer, Japanese, Italian, German
77. Rob Schneider, comedian/actor, Filipino, German
80. Russell Wong, actor, Chinese, Dutch
81. Sandrine Holt, actress/model, Chinese, French
82. Sean Lennon, musician, English, Japanese
83. Shannon Lee, martial artist/actress, Chinese, German, Swedish
84. Slash (aka Saul Hudson), Guns and Roses musician, Black American and white
85. Soledad O’Brien, television personality, Irish/Australian father, Black/Cuban mother
87. Tata Young, singer, Thai, Caucasian
89. Tia and Tamara Mowry, actresses, black mother and white father
92. Tommy Chong, comedian, Chinese, Caucasian Canadian
93. Tyson Beckford, model, Chinese, Jamaican
94. Vin Diesel, actor, black, Italian
95. Yul Brenner, actor, Mongolian, Russian, Swiss
96. Christina Aguilera: singer, Ecuadorian and Irish
97. Jessica Alba: actress, French Canadian, Danish and Mexican American
98. Taylor Lautner: actor, French, Dutch, German,and Native American (specifically Odawa and Potawatomi)
99. Benjamin Bratt: actor, Peruvian, English and German
May 20, 2009 Leave a comment
This is a repost from an earlier page on this blog.
MUTTS LIKE ME BLOG is your ongoing guide for mutthood and for mutt wannabes alike! We can all learn from one another about how to make it in the world as, yes, a proud and productive mutt. Mutt being a warm catch-all for anyone multiracial, which is most everyone. We’re all a mix, and this blog is my place to play with a serious topic while at the same time drawing attention to “life as a mutt.”
Since when is race a topic for humor? And is now really the time to poke fun and play around with race, or with anything else, for that matter? After all, the world economy tanked. Who can laugh?
I, for one And you should, too. We all need it once in a while. Many onces, actually.
Especially now, we all need hope, and humor. Gloomy headlines, relentless and everywhere. In September 2008, the American Psychological Association reported that eighty percent of Americans felt irritable due to stress in the economy. (Just irritable? What about devastation, fear, and ruin? And what about that other twenty percent? What foxhole, I mean mutthole are they hiding in?)
A number of researchers have studied humor and it’s impact on hope and resilience. Science News Review (June 2008) cites a study that underscores how humor is a legitimate strategy for relieving stress and maintaining a general sense of well being while increasing a person’s hope. Not a cure, but a vital component for resilience.