Tuesday, September 25, 2007

What Constitutes Blackness?

I have to tell you good people – I received some very interesting emails from folks after my posting about Jaylaan Ahmad-Llewellyn. It seems that many of you out there in the blogosphere questioned the racial identity of her or her mother, so the emails got to flyin’…

Are you sure that they’re Black?
Isn’t her mother from (insert name any of Arab country here)?
Isn’t her father from (insert name of any racially ambiguous country here)?

OK, let me share a few thoughts with you.

The Llewellyns have never played the racially ambiguous “game” of multi-ethnicity like so many Black people who are light skinned. They consistently identify themselves as Black. They support causes important to our people and have advocated for many Black professionals over the years including yours truly.

This blog’s name is The Black Socialite. This means I cover the lifestyles of Black people, period (many of whom I know personally). The folks featured on this blog are referred to as Black because that is how they identify themselves publicly.

I am not in the business of claiming folks who don’t want to be claimed by us if you know what I mean. So it is unlikely that you will see me featuring people who are not interested in checking the “Black/African descent” box on their Census forms.

Hopefully, this provides a little more clarity on who you may see land on this blog.

Until we meet again, remember that although the “one drop” law was ruled as unconstitutional in the 1967 so anyone identifying themselves as “Black” today is doing so out of cultural and political choice – especially when they have the option as “passing” for something else.