The Black Label

Hi everyone!
So once again,a topic surfaced… And we’ve been having this argument for months now. Let’s get your opinion,see what you think!

WHAT COMES TO MIND WHEN YOU HEAR “BLACKS”,  A RACE/COLOR?
What does being black mean to you?
Is it just a tag?

Heritage?

A skin color?
Africa?

What makes Africa black?
What makes you black?
Are you even black?!

Let’s keep it coming in!!!

#Africa

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15 thoughts on “The Black Label

  1. I know many people whose skin color is darker than what some call a “black” person and they are from many other countries than Africa. I don’t call someone or categorize or point out someone by their skin color.
    But I also don’t say that boy or that girl or even base gender on clothing or hair length. Infact someone called me a lesbian the other day just because I have short hair and was wearing this cheap shirt I bought online because I needed a long sleeved white shirt that kept the sun off my arms that happened to say “female revolution.”
    My old roommate and I talked about his once because he said people referred to him as “that black man with no legs.” I even have this caricature somewhere that says “what do you want to be called? Disabled? In a wheelchair? DIFFERENTLY abled?” Um I just want to be called “Bethany”
    I have a neighbor from south africa that is white.
    I would never want to dispute or argue with whatever a person themselves chose to identify with or by or for what reason. If any of that made sense! It’s 2 am so I’m pretty sure there was a lot of rambling there

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  2. When I hear the word black the color/Africans all come to me. But what sticks is the moral part. Black as being impure and surprisingly it’s the basis of the black we view Africans as. We believe the white skin is pure. We even say our minds are back if we’ve sinned. But a white also sins, why do we still sew him as white (pure)
    I’m African

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  3. In all honesty the first thing I think of is the color. Then followed by a race of people. Rarely do I connect it with Africa, because well I’m not from there. Ancestors sure but they are probably way way way down the family tree.

    I also think of the stereotypical image of blacks and how I’m often seen as “white” because of how I don’t fit that mold. Personally I feel like race should never play a part in describing someone because you automatically assume this or that about them. Just see people. There are bad apples in every race.

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    1. I totally agree with you. But some people think they are blacks simply because they were tagged blacks and they are Africans. They think black is a heritage..their heritage. Shouldn’t black just be based on skin color? Do you think black goes beyond skin color? What do you think?

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      1. 🤔 black can be a heritage sure… But how many American black people really continue with the cultural aspect of African black people here? If that makes sense. Logically black should probably be based on skin color but that also leads to additional tags like the yellow black person: a black person with lighter skin. But there is also the “Well I have like 1% of black in me so that makes me black” mindset. I’m certain I have Native American blood but that doesn’t mean I’m going to go join a tribe on a conservation. I think people just like the ideas of labels especially with race because it keeps everyone in a place so to speak. An excuse to place blame somewhere else, even amongst the black community.

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        1. That’s the point..you said ,”a black person with a lighter skin color” What makes a person with a lighter skin color black? Why should he or she be referred to as black?

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        2. Guess it just comes down to biological melanin. Sure any non black person can tan to become “essentially black” but it doesn’t make them black. Just like anyone can bleach their skin and it doesn’t make them white.

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    2. I have to get this out of the way: I am white. My race has never been used against me, my race has always been to my benefit.

      I’m curious about this statement,

      “Personally I feel like race should never play a part in describing someone. . .”

      I’m a teacher and have students of all different races. While I’d never reduce any student to their race, I do think it’s important to differentiate between peoples experiences due to their race. It’s not a secret that young black men in my classroom face a different reality than the young white men in my classroom. When I once asked students at the beginning of my class what their nightmares are (metaphorical or literal) many white students had general things like “drowning” or “falling” or “being buried alive.” Some of the young black men in my class said their nightmares were being pulled over by police and there’s no doubt why that is a far more terrifying prospect for a young black man than a young white man.

      To me, it feels essential to acknowledge race within the classroom and without. It is the only way I, as a teacher, can acknowledge the experiences of my students that I, due to my whiteness (and when I say whiteness I am talking about power), am sheltered from.

      I may be off base here. But I am trying to understand how I can acknowledge peoples’ experiences. It is important that the experiences of people of different races are not only acknowledged but valued. This, I think, is my most important job as a teacher: making sure all my students know that their experiences and stories are valuable.

      Let me know your thoughts. I’m here to learn. And thanks, Lola, for starting this thread.

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      1. I’m not sure when you replied because I just got this notification. I think it’s awesome that you want all your students to know their experiences are valued. No disagreement there at all.

        And I don’t know– maybe I’m not the “right” black person to respond because my experiences are on par with those of “white privilege”. But regarding my statement of not using race to describe people– I meant don’t make that the first thing about them. Because in my opinion you paint a stereotype of this person. Though in all honestly, I really don’t see the need to bring it up at all.

        When my daughter tells me she played with some kid at the playground, I don’t automatically ask “Was she black or white?” I ask “oh did yall have fun?” We put way too much emphasis on race and it continues to divide everyone. (And then within those races, is even more division. Sad but true fact.)

        Hopefully this helped. And sorry for such a delayed response.

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