Photo Credit: Janet E. Dandridge © 2012 BlackStarCreative LLC. All rights reserved.

“When people ask me ‘What are you?,’ how I answer depends on who they are and my mood. I usually say ‘I’m Mixed,’ but if I’m in an abstract mood, I’ll say, ‘I’m a dance floor king.’ If I’m not in the mood at all, I just won’t answer the question. When I was younger and people would ask me, I would just say, “I’m Black” because I didn’t even want to get into it; but I always would sit there and think like ‘Yo, that’s disrespecting my mother, my grandmother, my cousins…’ It isn’t, but it made me start answering the question in a way that I think acknowledges and honors my family – ‘a Black man with a White mother.’ And see, when you say the word ‘mother,’ you automatically command respect because in saying the word ‘mother’ you’ve expressed the difference between a person who respects their mother on the highest order versus somebody who’s just aware that they have a mom. “I’m Black, my mother is White” – there’s no counter to that, end of conversation.”

West Los Angeles, California
Black Man with a White Mother

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