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Students question race during forum

By Sharonda Bullock


Published: Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Updated: Tuesday, March 9, 2010

As part of the Breaking Barriers Week, Cherrita McNeal and Jessica Holmes hosted an Interracial Dating forum in Hinshaw Hall Wednesday at 7 p.m.

The first question McNeal extended to the group was “So you think you know their race, but do you really? Followed by, “What happens when you’re not just black or not just white?” Many attendees expressed that there should be some type of a happy median between the two, but often bi-racial or multi-racial individuals have a hard time finding that point in between; as they may see it as the best or the worst of both worlds.

During the forum, the “one-drop rule” was mentioned; A term that was once used to categorize someone as black if they had any trace of African ancestry. Does the one-drop rule still apply? Is part black, all black? Does 50 percent black equal 100 percent black?

The 2000 census was the first time people were allowed to check more than one race. 2.4 percent or 6.8 million people did so. Malaysia, Singapore, and Switzerland all promote multi-ethnic and diverse populations.

With this, does it mean that theses populations will soon be all the same race and no differences will now equal no ethnic identity among its people? Although all of the questions that were formed as a result of this forum could not be answered, it opened the dialogue amongst the students who attended to a more broader understanding of people and the race and nationalities that they identify themselves with.

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