February 10, 2011

"Halle Berry may have chosen the wrong words but she makes the right point."

"It is important to read past her ugly custody case to have a larger conversation about race (one the baby's father apparently does not want to have). Her daughter will have to choose a racial identity, the way she had to choose a racial identity. In America, that means it will probably be chosen, at least in part, by the way people react to her. In America, her skin color (black or white) will be something that people use to define her. I applaud Halle Berry's courage, if not her choice of words. When she says, 'I believe in the one drop theory,' of course, she does not mean to endorse racism. But she does have the courage to do something so few Americans can: talk about race."

Either that or she's using whatever weapons she finds at hand as she fights for what she wants in her child custody battle.

168 comments:

Scott M said...

When she says, 'I believe in the one drop theory,' of course, she does not mean to endorse racism

Of course, that's exactly what she's doing.

But she does have the courage to do something so few Americans can: talk about race."

And de facto declares that one is superior to another in the raising of her daughter.

Pathetic.

Trooper York said...

Halle Berry is famous for popularizing one of the most accurate truisms that was ever uttered:

Show me a beautiful woman and I will show you a guy who is tired of fucking her.

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

Race is an irrelevant social construct.

Until you need it to be something else. Then it's the most important factor in your life.

Unless you're white. Then you're not allowed to make it important. At all. Ever.

Man, so many rules to keep straight...

Trooper York said...

If you don't believe me just ask David Justice.

ricpic said...

Lots of high yallers have crossed over to white and considering they're the sexiest women on earth it's a plus for our side.

lucid said...

Halle Berry is being so 1960s, way outside the current sensibility among young people.

More and more, people don't pick or identify with a single race/ethnicity. This is reflected in all the census data where people self-select an identity.

And in fact, the child is not one thing--they are not "dirty water" as the one drop theory would have it--they are a blend, probably a very lovely blend.

Our descendants will all be lightly tanned, cafe-au-lait colored someday.

The sooner the better.

DADvocate said...

Halle Berry's identity is defined by her face and her super hot body and what Trooper said. Race has little to do with it.

edutcher said...

There are so many mixed-race (pick your combo) kids out there, by the time hers grows up, it won't mean thing and she knows it.

I'm going with Ann's second option.

The Crack Emcee said...

"It is important to read past her ugly custody case to have a larger conversation about race,..."

Why?

bagoh20 said...

By the one drop theory, we are all chimpanzees, which explains a lot about our love of flinging poo, and smelling our fingers.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

The author kept saying that Ms. Berry's child will have to choose a racial identity.

So, what if she just, you know, doesn't? Does she die or something?

What if she just lives her life, as the incredibly beautiful (I'm sure), privilaged child of an extremely wealthy American who will never want for anything (but, perhaps, some less self-absorbed parents, but she'll get over it)?

Christopher said...

"But she does have the courage to do something so few Americans can: talk about race."

Absolute, utter, Jesus-Christ-on-a-fucking-crutch bullshit. Americans can very easily talk about race. It is, however, impossible to talk when the other side insists on screaming "RACIST!!!ELEVENTY!!!" at the top of their lungs.

Ask a lefty: want to talk about race?
"Sure."
Why is it most abortion clinics are located in predominantly black neigborhoods?
[crickets]
Why have over 60 years of "Great Society" incentives achieved nothing but the breakdown of the black family?
"RACIST!"

Henry said...

By the one-drop rule my red-headed kids are Cherokee Indians.

LordSomber said...

"In America, her skin color (black or white) will be something that people use to define her."

BS. In America, that is the exception, not the rule.

If anything, it is the shallow sorts who define themselves by what they are (race, gender, blah blah), rather than who they are (we all have a soul, right?).

traditionalguy said...

The most amazing development is not the gays getting fair treatment lately, it is the mixed race young folks that have no problem with anymore. The USA has accepted that. Maybe Korea has not but an American rarely discriminates against mixed race folks. Halle Berry's attorneys are just using every weapon that they can find to win a case.

AJ Lynch said...

Floyd is a lawyer right? I am always surprised how may lawyers sound so dumb.

virgil xenophon said...

I would demur, ScottM. I think what she is doing is stating her belief that, no matter what the DNA composite, in America if one doesn't look "white"from a physiognomy pov one is considered by most to be "black." By way of contrast for a variety of sociological & historical reasons this is the reverse in Brazil. There, unless one is "totally black" (to coin a phrase) one is considered "white."

In Halle's case, being that the father is 100% white and she herself 50% white, DNA-wise, one might consider her child "white," in the same way no one would ever consider someone who was 75% English , 12&1/2% German and 12&1/2% Chilean to be of Chilean descent or a "Chilean-American." Yet to the extent black features are prominently identifiable, in American society even today one is usually treated as "black" no matter what one's DNA mixture--no matter HOW the individual in question self identifies.

(to be cont'd)

The Crack Emcee said...

Good for her. We need some extraordinarily bad arguments for our time.

Phil 3:14 said...

And de facto declares that one is superior to another in the raising of her daughter.

My thoughts exactly.

Its good for Sasha and Malia that their paternal grandmother is dead.

Scott M said...

If anything, it is the shallow sorts who define themselves by what they are (race, gender, blah blah), rather than who they are (we all have a soul, right?)

Compare and contrast, in the context of the above statement, the acceptance speeches and interviews given by both Halle Berry and Denzel Washington the year they both won Best Actor/Actress. Halle brought it up repeatedly and conspicuously. Denzel, with far more class, said that he didn't want to be Denzel Washington the black actor. He wanted to be Denzel Washington the actor.

Book Of Ely rocks in 1080p, btw.

Scott M said...

Sorry...Book of Eli. Too-fast fingers.

Fred4Pres said...

I am so friggin sick of this. Halle, you are a member of the human race. So am I. Hopefully so is the father of your baby (but who knows, sometimes we make bad decisions in those things).

bagoh20 said...

By the one drop rule, Madison is a Black community, and doing quite well.

Moose said...

So that'd make her a Quadroon?

Hagar said...

I think there is a post on Instapundit or Hot Air about so many today driving the race counters in D.C. nuts by by checkin "Various," or whatever that box is labeled.

MayBee said...

The racism Halle wants to talk about is the alleged racism of the man fighting for custody of her child. She's disgusting on this.

I find this very interesting. Reportedly, Mark Dell is also going for at least partial custody of Padma Lakshmi's baby.

Men who were used to be baby daddies actually want to be daddies, and the women are fighting it (Halle in a really repulsive way)

Sixty Grit said...

She is stupid and liberal, so what difference does her race make?

Henry said...

10 things that will affect Halle Berry's kids:

10. Their race
9. Their wealth
8,7,6,5,4,3,2. Growing up in broken family in which their divorced parents hate each other.
1. Being Halle Berry's kids.

One outcome of this divorce is to make the kids' race less important.

bagoh20 said...

Berry is a disgrace to her race, whatever it is.

Scott M said...

@Henry

Excellent comment.

Henry said...

By the one drop rule Halle Berry is Marie of Romania.

DaveW said...

Either that or she's using whatever weapons she finds at hand as she fights for what she wants in her child custody battle.

Exactly. She's fighting a custody battle. Duh.

Having the courage to talk about race my ass.

Jennifer said...

Having grown up the product of two races, I'm too familiar with her point to dismiss it out of hand. Nobody has to choose a racial identity! It doesn't matter! are things easily said by people who have always known exactly who they identify with. Those of us who bumbled along through adolescence feeling part of multiple groups but claimed by none know exactly what she's talking about.

Everyone bumbles through adolescence feeling out parts of their identity and exploring kinship with this or that group - be it based on their talents and interests, abilities, gender, social status, attractiveness, etc... It's just silly to pretend that racial identity isn't a part of that process.

And I wouldn't say that identifying with one group over another - particularly when admittedly based mostly on the perceptions of those around you - is declaring one superior to the other. I grew up in Hawaii and am equal parts white and asian. In Hawaii, I always felt white mostly because that was how those around me identified me. On the mainland, I always feel asian because mostly that is how those around me identify me. It's a strange dichotomy felt the most strongly when stepping off a plane from one place to the other.

Freeman Hunt said...

Strange argument: The one drop rule was originally advanced by racists, so now it makes sense for anyone who was alive during the time it was being repealed to agree with it.

I'm not sure that I follow that one.

Coketown said...

Anyone else get the sense that the National Conversation on Race is like that worn-out set of golf clubs that the wife keeps throwing in the garbage but the husband keeps retrieving and saying, "No, honey, they're still good"?

Nothing new has been added to this conversation since the days of Equiano and Wilberforce. It's time to throw it out and start a new conversation on...oh, I don't know, the inalienable agency of children or some such nonsense. Let's talk about that for three hundred years.

Freeman Hunt said...

By the one drop rule, Madison is a Black community, and doing quite well.

Gave me a laugh.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their blood.

Henry said...

@Freeman Hunt - In a nutshell.
@Coketown - Great analogy.

virgil xenophon said...

Continuing....

In my case, I am married to a Louisiana Creole. FYI most La. Creoles consider themselves to be neither black nor white, but almost a race apart--having their own culture and language (French--my 83 yr-old mother-in-law still listens to French radio stations in Opelousas and talks with half her friends on the phone in French) religion (Catholic--most blacks are Protestant. Xavier Univ in N.O is widely touted by those ignorant of its history as "the only Catholic U. in the US that is black and the only black U. that is Catholic. But this is wrong, as it was founded as a strictly "Creole" university originally.) music (zydeco) cusine (creole) and geographical boundaries (SW La)

Every small town in S.W. Louisiana has 3 of everything: the black undertaker, the white one and the Creole one. Same for barbers, nightclubs, stores frequented, etc. There are the black churches (Protestant) white (Catholic) and the Catholic ones frequented by Creoles.

Creoles have long intermarried with their own to such an extent that they ARE a separate race inasmuch as Swedes, Danes Norwegians and Finns are in terms of hist, religion, language, religion, etc. Yet with the onset of the black-power movement in the 70s blacks tried to "claim" Creoles both to bolster their numbers for claims for federal programs and because the lighter-skinned, softer-haired Creoles improved black's social standing in the eyes of the public. My wife can remember one of her black HS teachers having the gall to come to their home and berating her Mother for "allowing" her to attend a "white" university rather than attending black Grambling or Southern U. in B.R or Dillard in N.O.

Trust me, sportsfans, the racial divide is alive and well.

Anthony said...

Remember, "having an open and honest discussion about race" = "Shut up and agree with me".

Sigivald said...

I'm pretty sure that all of that talk about racial identity and people's reactions isn't limited to "in America", myself.

bagoh20 said...

I think the interesting question is: If it's a choice, why choose Black?

Beldar said...

Wrong words, wrong point.

MayBee said...

I don't understand why this author finds it courageous of Halle to allege to the world that her daughter's father is racist and ashamed of his daughter.

This author wants Nala to be a sacrificial lamb so that she can have the conversation she wants.

Freeman Hunt said...

I agree with Jennifer that race becomes part of one's identity. It's a physical attribute like any other physical attribute. However, because it's an attribute like anything else, I don't see why it should be at all dominate within a person's identity.

For example, is Berry defined by others more by her beauty or more by her race? More by her wealth or more by her race? More by her career or more by her race?

Or put more generally, is a person defined more by his personality or more by his race? More by his intelligence or more by his race? More by his attractiveness or more by his race?

I don't think the answer is race for any of those unless the person chooses to embrace his race as his identity. Some people do that, and some people don't.

Some people make religion their main identity. Some people make hobbies their main identity. Some people want to be defined by appearance or wit or intellectualism or sexual preference or whatever.

Race is just another thing that others perceive about a person. And like the other things, a person can choose to be defined by it or not.

bagoh20 said...

Aren't Blacks the disadvantaged group, and don't you want your child or yourself to have all the advantages possible?

Maybe some truisms aren't true?

bagoh20 said...

Berry has to have at least one drop of ugly, fat, or even Republican blood.

bagoh20 said...

I have one drop of genius blood, and 3 of sexy.

madAsHell said...

Halle Berry is black?

Who knew?

Rhodamine said...

Just a guess, but if her ex was French-Canadian, her daughter might be more Cree than Black anyway!

Not that Canadians tend to look at things like that...

djf said...

"When she says, 'I believe in the one drop theory,' of course, she does not mean to endorse racism"

OF COURSE she endorses racism, the racism of the most racist ethnic group in the USA, the group that votes strictly by identity politics, and who will never ever be willing to live in a truly race-neutral world, that is, African-Americans.

BTW, there was recently a long discussion on another blog triggered by the fact that the young actress in the new "True Grit" movie is mixed race, 3/4 white and various others including Philippine, American Indian, etc. Apparently, some objected to a role that is supposed to be a white protestant young woman in the Old West being played by a "non-white" actress. There was a lot of back and forth, but in the end, most agreed that the threshold of 75% is about right for ethnic/racial identity. That is, if you are 75% white, then you are white, if you are 75% something else, then you are something else. This seems a reasonable threshold to me.

Scrutineer said...

bagoh20 previously won the thread and is now doing victory laps.

Hagar said...

Sigivald,
In the old country, at the mouth of the fjord out from my hometown, there is an island, not a large one, but the old boundary between "the West Coast" and the "North Coast" people went right across it, and when I grew up, the north and south ends of the island still spoke different dialects, had two churches, and two schools. Or so I was told.

bagoh20 said...

Babies should be tattooed with an accurate list of ingredients with percentages, and in a conspicuous place. People need to know, so they can make informed decisions in the marketplace of ideas.

TWM said...

Halle Berry has six toes on one foot. White or black, that freaks me out.

MayBee said...

bagoh20 said...
I think the interesting question is: If it's a choice, why choose Black?


ISWYDT

virgil xenophon said...

cont'd II,

My wife would be amused to hear some of the "we are beyond this" statements made here today. Jennifer puts it all in perspective. True, the current younger generation is more multi-racial and more tolerant than previous generations, but that doesn't mean all social distinctions based upon race are of no moment--as witnessed by attempts by the "black" community to absorb the Creole community in La. as one being essentially a "black" community.

When our son went to school growing up in Louisville in the 80/90s he was constantly
criticized by many blacks as not "black enough" and failure to identify with them, as well as by some whites as not being "white enough." Trust me, I've seen racism from both sides and while it's slowly diminishing over time as our demographics
change and intermarriage increases, people kid themselves that such things are easily ignored. And I hold no particular brief for Berry. What she did in her Academy Award acceptance speech in ignoring the efforts of her White mother who supported her thru thick & thin was, imo, despicable. But she DOES have a point in the case under discussion.

chickelit said...

Floyd's article states resentment--and that's about all it says.

TMink said...

Bigots are so cute when they fall over themselves trying to deny their racism.

It is like Hello Kitty with blood on her fur.

Tey

Scott M said...

It is like Hello Kitty with blood on her fur.

Yet another gänga Vinnare.

Fred4Pres said...

Halle Berry has six toes on one foot. White or black, that freaks me out.

Really? I am toe curious.

Fred4Pres said...

Promises, Promises.

A bunion is not a sixth toe. But she has nice feet anyway.

Kirk Parker said...

"He wanted to be Denzel Washington the actor."

He has certainly succeeded in that!

Bruce Hayden said...

Why does she care?

Because Blacks get big racial preferences in school, government, and even in business. These preferences are justified based on traditional exploitation of some class, to make amends for something they suffered, or to promote diversity.

But, of course, the people who most benefit from these racial preferences are the elites, such as Berry. Rich Black kids going to the same prep schools as rich White kids are almost indistinguishable, but are the ones who most benefit from those racial preferences.

But you ask, what does raising the kid as Black do for the kid? I would suggest that the biggest thing here is to engender a victim mentality. They will come to believe that they are victims, despite being raised in a big house in an exclusive, likely gated, area, and attending the best schools. But, somehow, they are a victim.

Pogo said...

Since we're using the One Drop Rule, can we get that "3/5ths of a person" thingy back too?

Thanks; that would be great.

holdfast said...

Well, either way the kid ain't pure laine - I'm sure grandmere et grandpere sont très désolé!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pure_laine

virgil xenophon said...

"....somehow, they are a victim."

Isn't that EXACTLY what middle-class Princeton "affirmative action" undergrad Michelle Obama thought/thinks, Bruce?

holdfast said...

It's funny how only people protected by their minority-status armor like Obama, Holder and Berry have "the courage to talk about race". For any white person to talk frankly about race would require the courage of a Japanese pilot from the Divine Wind corps.

MadisonMan said...

When custody battles are ongoing, my cynicism about all comments goes through the roof. (And that's saying something)

Fr Martin Fox said...

"Here daughter will have to choose a racial identity."

Why? Who says?

Are we not allowed to refuse to choose?

This may sound stupid, but I guess I'm white. As far as I know, my immediate forebears are all white. All my attributes are "white." I suppose for a couple hundred bucks I can have a genetic test done and really find out some interesting things.

But really, even a few generations back, I don't know.

But the thing is, I DON'T CARE. I don't wish to care. If I found out I had a black or Indian or Asian forebear, other than finding that fascinating, what other difference does that make?

holdfast said...

Are we saying that in 18 years education will be so expensive that the child of an Oscar-winning actress will have to specify her race in order to get financial aid? Or maybe she will help fill Harvard's quota for black admitees?

lemondog said...

Halle Berry has six toes on one foot

I thought it was Oprah

Geoff Matthews said...

I think that Halle Berry played a white character in the Flinstones movie.
At least she looked white, from what I remember. Didn't really care.

MathMom said...

I say Choice B.

Trooper York said...

You better stop with the six toes bullshit or Rex Ryan is gonna start stalking her and he has to get ready for next season so they can blow the championship game again.

garage mahal said...

Does Halle Berry have a portal I could check out?

danielle said...

Ann probably is right about the custody battle's influence on the timing of this article ... BUT if it true that her dad doesnt quite get race in America, or that he has some controversial beliefs/attitudes about race that Halle finds harmful (not clear why she didnt find this out before the baby making ..), then you cant blame her for shining a light on these issues... it doesnt mean she's not fighting fair ...

ironrailsironweights said...

Here is my view on the current state of the One Drop Rule. I posted it at Half Sigma, in a discussion about one quarter-black Gossip Girl (and Aaron Rodgers girlfriend) Jessica Szohr:

My take on the current state of the One Drop Rule:

We no longer classify a person of fully white appearance as black merely because he or she is known to have a small amount of black ancestry. Most everyone will say that the person is white, although a few may prefer to call him or her multiracial.

How about a person like Jessica Szohr or the girl from True Grit [Hailee Steinfeld], who appears white or mostly white at first glance, but whose nonwhite ancestry can be seen if you know about it and look more closely? A very few people may still insist on classifying the person as black, but that's on a very definite decline. Most people would accept either white or multiracial.

On the other hand, a mixed person whose black ancestry is immediately apparent, if not necessarily dominant, is more likely than not to be called black unless he or she insists on being classified as multiracial. Obama is the most obvious example, others would be Alicia Keys and Halle Berry. People in this category are generally at least half black, though there are exceptions such as the quarter-black Yoakim Noah.


Another peculiarity of the One Drop Rule is that it applies only with respect to black ancestry. Asian, Native American or Hispanic ancestry will not bring the rule into play.

Peter

Scott M said...

Does Halle Berry have a portal I could check out?

She's got at least three that I'm interested in, to be honest. Past that it gets really kinky.

Hoosier Daddy said...

She reminds me a lot of Demi Moore. Very attractive, great bodies, horrific actors with lousy mate choosing abilities.

virgil xenophon said...

ironrailsironweights scores a bulls-eye.

Trooper York said...

virgil xenophon said...
ironrailsironweights scores a bulls-eye.

Well that is only because there was hair around it.

ironrailsironweights said...

most agreed that the threshold of 75% is about right for ethnic/racial identity. That is, if you are 75% white, then you are white

In general, yes, but given the way genetics work there are invariably going to be some exceptions. Yoakim Noah is the most obvious example. Although he is 75% white, due to some odd quirks of genetics he looks mostly black. Some people might consider him multiracial, but for the most part he is black.

Peter

lemondog said...

You better stop with the six toes bullshit...

You're right....tacky.

How 'bout multiple breasts?

EDH said...

Notice, while decrying her predicament "In America," evidently as compared to all other places in the world, Jami Floyd says:

"Her daughter will have to choose a racial identity, the way she had to choose a racial identity. In America, that means it will probably be chosen, at least in part, by the way people react to her. In America, her skin color (black or white) will be something that people use to define her."

Obamacare and race questions

Jami Floyd is an attorney, broadcast journalist and legal analyst... former advisor in the Clinton administration and served as a surrogate for the Obama campaign on legal and domestic policy issues.

CJinPA said...

At the link:
Halle Berry and I really have nothing in common. But in America, we have everything in common. Because, America remains a place that is defined by race, whether it is the One Drop Rule something much more subtle, race is something that matters to us and matters to our children — children who are uniquely positioned to help their country someday move beyond it.

But you don't really want to "move beyond it." If anything, the Left is embedding race consciousness more and more.

E Pluribus Pluribus, baby.

Diane said...

But aren't we a "post-racial" society? If so, why does the government insist on collecting data by race? When we stop handing out entitlements by race, and using race as a political tool, fewer people will make the kind of misguided statements as Ms. Berry.

Pfft. Mixed parentage is going to be the norm soon, and has created some lovely (and admittedly non-lovely) people. Why can't we simply identify them as "people", without the race?

G Joubert said...

I used to watch Jamie Floyd on Court TV, now called truTV. The woman is race-obsessed. She would always self-identify and proclaim herself as black, although she didn't really appear to be so much. I had to look closer to see, yeah, maybe there is some mixed lineage. If anyone knows about the one-drop concept, I guess she does.

Pogo said...

Halle Berry is going to play a "woman suffering from multiple personality disorder", in a a 'psychological drama' movie called Frankie & Alice

"Half the time Halle's a down-on-her-luck club dancer named Frankie, the other half she's a prim, racist, Southern white lady."

Hoosier Daddy said...

If I found out I had a black or Indian or Asian forebear, other than finding that fascinating, what other difference does that make?

Well I have done some extensive research on my ancestry and on the paternal side we’re as Polish as sausage and bowling. We actually Anglicized the last name to give it some vowels, that’s how Polish we are. Then there was my Dad who could tan walking through a lit room. He would get so dark during the summer he was often mistaken for being black or Hispanic.
During his navy days when he came home on leave it was an absolute scandal that my mom was dating a black man.

I recalled my great-grandmother who God rest her soul, had a good detail of info on where Dad’s stock came from and lo and behold they tended to be on the south-eastern edge of Poland and right in the pathway of the Mongol invasion. So it’s possible that I have some of the blood of Genghis Khan flowing in my veins.

Maybe that’s why I tend to vote Republican.

ironrailsironweights said...

Not being familiar with Jami Floyd I looked at a couple of You Tube videos of her. She looks part-Asian. She does not look black at all.

Peter

Hagar said...

Winston Churchill was 1/8 American Indian and under today's rules would be entitled to run a gambling casino in New York.

Skipper50 said...

Why is it, again, necessary to "choose" a racial identity?

Fred4Pres said...

Ms. Berry is a member of the human race, even if she has six toes. In fact, that makes her even extra special if that is true.


This whole race thing is really tedious, especially since all of us are no more than 50,000 years out of Africa anyway. And who is to say someone is African or not? Lighten up...oh excuse me, I mean get over it. Your cultural identity (and being African American is part of that more than genetic make up) is always your business and frankly one that a child has to do on their own as they get older (beyond their parents).

Hoosier Daddy said...

When I see the boxes to mark in race I am always tempted to write in 'triathalon'.

knox said...

It is true that in the US, the vast majority of mixed-race people are pigeon-holed as black. For all the people saying here that it doesn't matter, or shouldn't, well... it does.

You can choose to be white, but what good does that do you when white people see you as black and/or black people accuse you of trying to "be white," etc.

I can see how this would be a very real concern for a mom.

Maguro said...

I dunno, Halle's kid does not look all that black to me. Am I missing something?

TWM said...

"A bunion is not a sixth toe. But she has nice feet anyway."

I'm going with sixth toe. But either way it's icky. LOL

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

Small people obsess about small differences.

CJinPA said...

It is true that in the US, the vast majority of mixed-race people are pigeon-holed as black. For all the people saying here that it doesn't matter, or shouldn't, well... it does.

Agreed. The question is, are we still working under the common understanding that it shouldn't, or have we given up and accepted that it always will?

It seems as if the latter won the day in some secret vote some time ago, but a majority of Americans still think we're operating under the former.

prairie wind said...

When we stop handing out entitlements by race, and using race as a political tool...

Our school district bused kids from one side of town to the other (black to white, white to black) from about 1975 to around 2000. Now, with the end of court-mandated busing, thethey don't have to balance school populations by race so they have decided to balance them by income level. Poor kids can be bused to schools in wealthier neighborhoods, and wealthier kids can be bused to poorer neighborhoods. Because somehow it is important for children to sit next to children who are much wealthier or much poorer than they. I'm quite sure that administrators feel that "poor" = "black".

When I look at how all the focus on race has NOT made race relations better, I shudder to think what all the focus on socioeconomic status will do.

William said...

In a woman, good looks, especially the kind of movie star good looks possessed by Halle Berry, trumps all other characteristics. I suppose she has had to duck a few inside fast balls, but mostly she has gone through life with men tossing softballs to her wheelhouse. Whatever her life is, it is not typical of anyone except six toed movie stars.

AllenS said...

Hoosier Daddy said...
So it’s possible that I have some of the blood of Genghis Khan flowing in my veins.

Maybe that’s why I tend to vote Republican.


And that my friends, is what's called a thread winner.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

ironrailsironweights,

It took me an embarrassing number of years to discover that Mariah Carey was generally considered Black.

Scott M said...

It took me an embarrassing number of years to discover that Mariah Carey was generally considered Black.

She wasn't until P Diddy put some in here. Now she's not white or black or anything other than fat.

MnMark said...

To those romantics arguing that race doesn't really matter: if you're white, try making that argument when you walk into a black nightclub in a tough black neighborhood and every eye is on you. Doesn't matter what YOU think about race. It matters whether THEY think you're one of them. These issues are bigger than what an individual thinks...they are social concerns that operate on a different level from intellectual abstractions.

Human beings have an instinct to want to identify with a people, to know who their people are. Doesn't matter whether you like it or not, it's a fact on a deep level not susceptible to romantic idealistic notions. We want to belong. We want to be part of a family, and beyond that, a people. And I don't think it's something you can just choose...any more than you can just choose your parents.

Berry wants her daughter to think of herself as black because Berry thinks of herself as black, and she wants to feel the sense of unity based on shared identity that she feels with blacks and does not feel with whites. Her husband wants the girl to think she is white for the same reason. It's a very real concern. Look at how Berry treated her white mother. Look how Obama behaves towards his white ancestors. The reality is you don't identify equally with all the races in your background.

Scott M said...

She wasn't until P Diddy put some in here.

In HER, dammit. When snark goes bad, it can go very bad indeed. Not as bad as the "Victory" video (although Busta Ryhmes should get credit for awesomeness there), but you know what I mean.

MnMark said...

This Berry race thing really gets to the heart of the liberal fallacy. Liberals contend that human beings can fully self-define themselves, that they are not limited by things like genetic or social background. The actual reality is that human beings are not that simple or that free. We are partly a product of our genetics and our societies. We have primal aspects to our personalities and emotions that cannot be reasoned or legislated or wished out of existence. A prime example being our racial/cultural/ethnic identity.

And for those who think that if everyone were just of the same brown mixed-race, and white people had ceased to exist, that the problems would be solved: they would not. The time when everyone was an identical genetic mix is very, very far in the future (if ever) and until that time there would continue to be racial distinctions drawn, only with finer and finer distinctions - just as blacks have a multitude of terms for distinguishing degree of blackness based on skin color and discriminate among themselves based on those fine shadings of difference.

It's also strange that people who profess to be so delighted by 'diversity' are wishing so devoutly that all racial diversity could be eliminated.

Scott M said...

that the problems would be solved: they would not

Just spend some time in Korea and catalog all the different reasons they have for hating each other completely outside race.

MayBee said...

Scott M:
Now she's not white or black or anything other than fat.

To be fair, now she's fat because Nick Cannon put some twins in her.

Trooper York said...

It doesn't really matter if Mariah Carey is black or white. As Derek Jeter can tell you she just doesn't pass the smell test.

Freeman Hunt said...

In a woman, good looks, especially the kind of movie star good looks possessed by Halle Berry, trumps all other characteristics. I suppose she has had to duck a few inside fast balls, but mostly she has gone through life with men tossing softballs to her wheelhouse.

Truth.

Someone wrote that if you don't think race matters, try being white and walking into an all black nightclub. All eyes will be on you.

To that, I respond, try being as good looking as Berry and walking into any nightclub. All eyes will be on you.

Race isn't the only thing that garners attention from people, and yet, it's treated as the end all be all outward characteristic.

JAL said...

So all this nonsense means MLK was some stupid baptist guy with a bug in his bonnet about living beyond racism.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but y the content of their character.

Halle Berry?

Not so much. Exploiter.

djf said...

BTW, Ernest Hemingway's cats have six toes. And they are mixed race (different breeds)!

bagoh20 said...

"Well that is only because there was hair around it."

Ahh, the rare belly laugh visits me today. Thanks, Trooper.

knox said...

Halle Berry might be exploiting the situation to get custody. Who knows.

But she is mixed-race and (obv.) her child is, too. I wouldn't blame her if she were acutely aware of the potential confusion and complications that arise.

Every famous person I can think of who is mixed is automatically considered "black" except for Slash from G & R.

JAL said...

A friend of mine is married to a guy who is "black." (Well, actually cafe au lait as his grandfather was white as a KKK sheet.) As I recall there was more then one white progenitor in his family, but pretty much they were a culturally black family.

She, OTOH, was an American Indian mix with a bunch of other things which I don't remember now. (French Canadian?) You could see that in her high cheekbones though she was pretty fair skinned.

So she needed to record what race he is for for kindergarten for some statistical reason or other.

They labeled him "black." She read them the riot act -- not because she wanted him labeled as caucasian, but that it was an automatic presumption when "mixed race" or "other" was an option.

The kid is truly bi/multi/racial both genetically and culturally.

Almost Ali said...

Mulattoes and Redbones **feel** like aliens, mistakes born of two separate worlds, and rarely fully accepted by either.

Berry knows the score; "racial identity" (ie appearance) chooses you.

MayBee said...

Halle Berry might be exploiting the situation to get custody. Who knows.

Everybody knows, because she is the one talking about it to outlets like TMZ.
Without the custody battle, there's no "situation". She didn't try to start a national conversation on race. She complained to gossip outlets that her ex is ashamed of their daughter's race.

Methadras said...

Phil 3:14 said...

Its good for Sasha and Malia that their paternal grandmother is dead.


Did Erkle throw her under a bus too?

Methadras said...

Her nuttiness just killed her hotness. GOD DAMMIT!!!

knox said...

They labeled him "black." She read them the riot act -- not because she wanted him labeled as caucasian, but that it was an automatic presumption when "mixed race" or "other" was an option.

The Fannie Flagg book "Welcome to the World, Baby Girl!" addresses this situation quite poignantly.

knox said...

Without the custody battle, there's no "situation".

??

If there was no custody battle, the child wouldn't be mixed?

I don't think Berry should be mud-slinging. And she obviously either 1. can't pick em or 2. can't keep em. That is definitely her fault. But the mixed race thing can be fraught with anguish and to deny that is to... well, be in denial.

Franklin said...

But she does have the courage to do something so few Americans can: talk about race.

Yeah, gosh, if only SOMEBODY would please have the courage to talk about race. We never, ever, ever talk about race in this country.

kcom said...

"In HER, dammit. When snark goes bad, it can go very bad indeed. Not as bad as the "Victory" video (although Busta Ryhmes should get credit for awesomeness there), but you know what I mean."

You'd have to look long and hard (see what I did there?) to find a typo as bad as the recent one by Amanda Hess where she said in an article:

One in three black men who have sex with me are HIV positive

Of course, she meant to say one in three black men who have sex with men are HIV-positive. Ooops!

Revenant said...

I wouldn't even know Halle Berry was "black" if I hadn't been told.

Revenant said...

But the mixed race thing can be fraught with anguish and to deny that is to... well, be in denial.

You know what causes anguish? Forcing a kid of mixed ethnicity to pick one.

Shanna said...

I don't really get why the one drop rule is coming up in a custody battle..Does Halle have some greater claim if the child is found to be "black" rather than "white"? She's obviously equally related to both parents. This is so stupid.

MayBee said...

You know what causes anguish? Forcing a kid of mixed ethnicity to pick one.

Also, putting it out in public that your father is racist against you also causes some anguish.

knox said...

You know what causes anguish? Forcing a kid of mixed ethnicity to pick one.

It's others who do (or try to do) the forcing. And most will "force" her to identify as black.

knox said...

Also, putting it out in public that your father is racist against you also causes some anguish.

I just did some further reading and saw where Berry claims he called her the N word. If so, shame on her for having a relationship with someone like that. And she should also button her lip about that aspect of it, for her daughter's sake.

MayBee said...


If there was no custody battle, the child wouldn't be mixed?


You said Halle may be taking advantage of "the situation". Did you mean "the situation" was that her child was mixed race?
Did you further mean Halle Berry may be exploiting that for custody?
But you just don't know.

My point is you do know. Because there is no reason for you to be hearing about any of this *but for* the custody battle.
There was no public debate about the race of Halle's baby until she decided to use it to make her ex look bad. What we don't know is whether it is even true.

Putting her accusations out in public is going to hurt her daughter. It is going to cause anguish.

Shanna said...

Oh, ok. Now I see she is trying to say the father is racist, or something? Ugh. That seems sort of low.

Maguro said...

A woman would never lie in a custody dispute.

That's unpossible.

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

other than finding that fascinating, what other difference does that make?

Thanks for clarifying your opinion on the importance of intellectual curiosity and knowledge of the world, Father Martin(!)

Shanna said...

Unless of course he is racist, in which case why did she marry him? (or maybe she didn't, I have no idea)

Any mud slung in a custody battle should be taken with about a gallon of salt.

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

Unfortunately, I think it's a sort of opinion that defines the attitudes of many here and elsewhere.

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

If we declare that what is known as "race" is an irrelevant social construct loudly enough, then it will become one.

Same thing with wealth. Same thing with beauty, same thing with intellectual achievements, etc. Blah blah blah ideological ignorance in a nutshell.

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

And BTW, before anyone jumps I suppose I should let it be known that I think Halle Berry is a bitch and nowhere moreso than with what she is doing here (and probably with her divorce and even her marriage in general). However her kid ends up feeling about those things is the kid's business.

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

Liberals contend that human beings can fully self-define themselves

To the extent that this gets at the heart of anything, I would think that liberals contend that human beings should be able to fully define themselves, not necessarily that they can or are permitted to.

Reality, my friend. Account for it and you will understand true Lockean liberalism much better than your friends here do.

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

Apart from that and perhaps his last paragraph (depending on what he's trying to say), I think that MnMark makes some good points in his 4:05 PM comment.

MayBee said...

They never married. I'm not sure they ever lived full time in the same city.
She wanted a baby and he's the father, and now they aren't a couple any more but she still wants to have control over their child.

I find it really fascinating. As I mentioned, Padma Lakshmi is going through something similar with Adam Dell, the father of her child. She isn't making ugly accusations, but she really just wanted the baby for herself. Adam Dell wants more visitation rights.

These men don't understand they are just supposed to respect the woman's choice.

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

Same with his 3:57 PM comment (including excepting the last paragraph in part or in full. I'm not entirely sure that, certain self-serving right-wing fantasies notwithstanding, Obama has some kind of disparaging contempt for half his family).

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

South Asian "Indians" are considered "caucasian" - (to the extent that race still has any scientific meaning), but more importantly, diverged from a diverse group of linguistically and ethnically related people less than a mere 4 - 6 thousand years ago or so. They're pretty darn close to being European (at least Northern Indians are), esp. considering the tens to hundreds of thousands of years of cultural development and biological distance that separates Europeans from other human groups.

Kirk Parker said...

Hoosier,
mi
Wouldn't 'biathlon' be more intimidating?

JAL said...

Did Erkle throw her under a bus too?

A looooong time back --- 2008? Remember "typical white person"... yadayada

but she "didn't harbor any racial animosity" ... she just got stupidly nervous when a black panhandler was harassing her.

But she is a typical white person who, uh, if she sees somebody on the street that she doesn't know there's a reaction that's been been bred into our experiences that don't go away and that sometimes come out in the wrong way and that's just the nature of race in our society. We have to break through it..." - Senator Barack Obama March 2008

... typical black persons never feel that way ...

Trooper York said...

To get to my original point.....as hot as Halle Berry is....isn't interesting that so many guys are tired of fucking her.

It is kind of funny dontcha think?

There has to be something going on there that's really screwed up. Just sayn'

Revenant said...

It's others who do (or try to do) the forcing. And most will "force" her to identify as black.

Who are these "others"? And how are they going to know the kid has a black grandparent? Certainly not by looking. I know Italians and Greeks who look less "white" than that kid.

Hell, I know Italians and Greeks who look less "white" than Halle Berry. :)

Maybe if she lived in some two-toned state like Alabama, where everyone's either black or white, people might say "that kid's part black". But Berry divides her time between Canada -- where the vast majority of non-whites are Asian -- and Southern California, which is one of the most racially mixed places on Earth.

The simple fact of the matter is that Berry's imposing an identity on the kid because Berry's got problems, not because society does.

Trooper York said...

I mean even as mean a horse faced bitch as Sara Jessica Horseface can keep a man and Halle can't seem to manage it.

Of course she takes Matthew's belt and shoelaces away from when he comes home but that's another story.

Pogo said...

I'm dying to see the crash n'burn of Berry's movie where she plays a black woman who says racist shit because she believes she's white.

It sounds awesomely bad.

Shanna said...

if she sees somebody on the street that she doesn't know there's a reaction that's been been bred into our experiences that don't go away and that sometimes come out in the wrong way and that's just the nature of race in our society.

I just love that there is not one teeny tiny possibility that his grandma may have had a good reason to be scared of a creepy guy on the street, whatever his color.

I'm dying to see the crash n'burn of Berry's movie where she plays a black woman who says racist shit because she believes she's white.

Was the movie adapted from a dave chapelle skit?

Cedarford said...

Lucid - "And in fact, the child is not one thing--they are not "dirty water" as the one drop theory would have it--they are a blend, probably a very lovely blend.

Our descendants will all be lightly tanned, cafe-au-lait colored someday.

The sooner the better."

----------------------------
Not necessarily. Societies can aggregate when components assembled have mutual levels of achievement and attraction. America was disaggregated by race, aggregated more as a middle class developed. But now, is disaggregating by class, wealth, and educational attainment that does not mean all races and ethnicities are on the same uniform distribution from top to bottom.
Meaning that a grad degree Asian has little interest, and her parents, importantly, have no interest whatsoever, in seeing her paired up with a less educated black man.
Some societies have races and ethnicties alongside one another for 500 years with little admixture - others go away from mixing when cultural or educational or wealth factors separate groups as society evolves.

Big Mike said...

Back in the 1960s when I demonstrated for civil rights, the dream was of a society where race didn't matter.

Halle Berry wants to go back to the 1950s.

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

The word "typical" is such an incredibly painful word to hear! I might as well be thrown under a bus if someone used such a put-down toward me! Everyone knows that we are all individually special people, regardless of which reality TV show we use to inflate our sense of self. "Typical" is, like, the meanest thing anyone can ever say about another person. Ever in a million years.

Revenant said...

What is significant about Obama's use of the phrase "typical white person" isn't that he hurt our poor little feelings, but rather that it showed he's not that bright.

kcom said...

"Was the movie adapted from a dave chapelle skit?"

Maybe....

Conservatives 4 Better Dental Hygiene said...

Blah blah blah Obama's sooo stoooopid!

JAL said...

@shanna I just love that there is not one teeny tiny possibility that his grandma may have had a good reason to be scared of a creepy guy on the street, whatever his color.

As a matter of fact there was one very large probability that she had good reason. He described the incident somewhat differently in his book. It was more like some guy was panhandling (bugging her) at the bus stop and she felt pressured so she had Mr. Dunham drive her to work.

JAL said...

Ritmo -- BHO demonstrates a remarkable lack of nuance when it comes to slipping racist asides into conversations.

It's too often, too regular and too predictable after the 3 year shaking out we've had.

Fr Martin Fox said...

MnMark said...

To those romantics arguing that race doesn't really matter: if you're white, try making that argument when you walk into a black nightclub in a tough black neighborhood and every eye is on you.

Well, I actually did something sorta like that as a high school kid. I went to a city high school, across town from my (mostly white) neighborhood, in a pretty rough part of town, which certainly wasn't mostly white. And one night I was at school, I think I was there for a play or something, and I was supposed to take the bus home from school. That's right, in high school my parents let me ride the city bus home across town. And, as it was around 10 pm, and there weren't a lot of buses, I walked part of the route rather than stand in one place. While walking down the street, there was a restaurant open, a small shop selling ribs. I walked in; I don't recall if I bought something or what, but I was a 16- or 17-year old, and no one else white. I really don't remember being scared, I was raised to be polite and while I think the clerk was sure puzzled about me, it was fine.

I used to take city buses all the time, including downtown; and many times I'd walk through the rougher part of town--again, walking part of the way home rather than just stand and wait for the bus. No one ever bothered me; the only time anyone ever beat me up, it was a white kid; I think you know the rude expression, rhymes with "night rash."

I ran for office once (I lost), but campaigned all over the black wards, including visiting all black churches. I was a Republican. I was always treated with courtesy, although I never got many votes out of it.

When I was a kid at the neighborhood swimming pool, I remember seeing a black kid, and seeing how he'd shake his hair dry; I thought that was the coolest thing. I wanted an afro.

I'm not saying there is nothing to what you say, just telling my stories for what they may be worth.

William said...

I don't think racial prejudice is a figment of Al Sharpton's imagination. However much he exploits it, it exists and, for some, it splatters like hot oil on a raw wound. Halle Berry, for all her beauty and wealth, could have as many problems as, say, Joan Crawford but I just don't think racism would be all that high on the list......When I was young, I was very poor. I also had one of the world's worst cases of acne. Guess which problem caused me the most misery?....If I talk of my struggles to overcome poverty, the melodrama fits a familar narrative and I get to be a hero. If I talk of my struggles with acne, the play becomes a farce and I become faintly ridiculous. Many of us complain not of our most painful sorrows but of those we can depict as ennobling....I remember reading that Halle Berry's father was an abusive low life. Maybe she is deflecting her anger towards him to society at large. In any event, by her own judgement, she gravitates towards unworthy men, and this is a problem more Freudian than racial.

Revenant said...

Blah blah blah Obama's sooo stoooopid!

He's not stupid. Just not much of a thinker -- uninterested in questioning received knowledge.

SGT Ted said...

If one is forced to "choose" what "group" to identify with based on your skin color, then that is bigotry and racism.

There won't be any "larger conversation about race" because the racist darkskinned greivance industry isn't interested in one. They are in it for the shakedowns and white guilt benefits.

SGT Ted said...

MLK just called from heaven. He wants his Moral Authority back.

george said...

It would be more correct to say that it is important for a liberal to choose a racial identity since all of their beliefs are based on racism and dividing the pot based on who has the most grievances. For a conservative or libertarian it is irrelevant since for them success is measured by excellence.

jr565 said...

There was a movie a long time ago who's name eludes me with Halle Berry as a crack addicted mom who abandons her kid who is raised by Jessica Lange. Then years later the mom gets her act together and sues to get her kid back and argues that Jessica Lange can't raise him because the kid is black and only black people can understand blacks and raise blacks adequately. Plus her genes trump everything.

I guess she really believes that character. ANd I guess in her mind, black genes trump all genes.Even though the daughter is "mixed raced" and is both black AND white, she is black through and through.

MLK would be rolling over in his grave, and Klu Klux Klanners talking about how you shouldn't mix the raises and dilute the blood are high fiving themselves saying "see we told you so".
Congrats Halle.

JAL said...

@William I remember reading that Halle Berry's father was an abusive low life. Maybe she is deflecting her anger towards him to society at large.

I believe he was lack and her mom was/is white? So how does that work?

Ask BHO. His father was someone no one would want their kid to identify with.

As I said -- How does that work?

Sixty Grit said...

jr565 - what do you mean by "klu klux klan"?