How I Learned about the One-Drop Rule: Mark



FANSHEN: Recently I asked my friends when was the first time that they heard about the one-drop rule. And their answers were really incredible, so we’re sharing them here and we’d like to hear yours. So send us an email (onedropoflove(at)gmail, tweet us, anything, and let us know: when was the first time that YOU learned about the one-drop rule?

: I self-identify as mixed, but I am politically Black. In our family we never talked about race or the one-drop rule – anything. And so basically I just intuited that there was a one-drop rule because I was defined as Black growing up as far as my experiences.

My dearest friend, growing up, would call me “contraband” because he learned about the phrase – he read something about slavery and that a slave that was seeking freedom, if they were caught they were considered ‘contraband’ and he thought that was funny. I had no knowledge, so he was calling me contraband and it hurt like hell and I had no ability to defend myself or to articulate a different argument.

So it really wasn’t until I graduated from high school, I was in the Marine Corps, I came across an interesting story in the New York Times about a woman who was suing the State of Louisiana because her birth certificate said that she was ‘Colored.’ She was raised White, she self-identified as White. And she fought her case all the way up to the Supreme Court and lost because according to state law, in 1970 if you were just any – any trace of Black, you were Colored to 1/32 Black, you were Colored. And she had 3/32s – they even went so far as to hire a genealogist. And so that fascinated me – it really resonated with me. I couldn’t articulate why, but I just found it a fascinating story.

Ten years later I was attending school at Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland and I learned about the one-drop rule. And that’s where I learned about slavery, I learned about Manifest Destiny, etc. etc. etc. And I learned about the one-drop rule and I learned how pernicious and ridiculous it is and how hard we work to create a caste system and what really saddened me was defining Black as a negative – that if you had any part Black in you, that was not a good thing. And that’s…that’s heartbreaking. Nobody should ever have that experience and it will end because of people like Fanshen, who are creating this space for us to talk about elements of racism such as the one-drop rule and I’m very appreciative and have much gratitude for allowing me to share my story of how I learned about the one-drop rule.

: Don’t forget to subscribe to the channel to keep up with the latestOne Drop news and other videos. Do you have ideas for more video content? Tell us what you’d like to see. We’ll see you next time to share more drops of love. Be sure to tell us by commenting here and on Twitter and Facebook, how YOU are spreading drops of love.




Sourced through from:

One Drop, but Many Views on Race

A series of portraits and an accompanying book argue that racial identity is not merely biological or genetic, but also a matter of context and even personal choice.

See on

Do Mixed Race Americans Have an Obligation To Identify As Black? | Clutch Magazine

In this weekend’s New York Times Opinion section, William Chatterton Williams deftly tackles one of the larger questions of the Obama era: how should peopl

See on

Is It Time to Do Away With The ‘One-Drop’ Rule? | Clutch Magazine

Untangling the one-drop rule in America may be damn near impossible. It is so deeply rooted in our collective history that it would take generations to unravel.

See on

9 Black Celebrities Who Rejected The One Drop Rule – Page 4 of 4 – Atlanta Black Star

Oscar award winning actress Halle Berry has also talked about being biracial, “Being biracial is sort of like being in a secret society,” she said.

See on

Don Lemon: Legacy of ‘one drop’ rule inspires search for family history

Via Scoop.itMixed American Life

Editor’s note: Don Lemon anchors CNN Newsroom during weekend prime-time and serves as a correspondent across CNN’s U.S. programming.

My Experience on the Indian-Negro Color Line

Via Scoop.itMixed American Life

“Classroom discussions about race motivated me, at the age of 46, to reclaim my Indian ancestry by having my birth certificate changed from “Negro” to “American Indian.” The experience was emotionally overwhelming as I had been denied my birthright as an E. Pequot-Nottoway. Changing my birth certificate was not because I was ashamed of my multiracial identity; it was an affirmation of my survival as an Indian and an act of self-determination in a country that has gone so far to erase my ancestry from history.”

Generation-Mixed : A group for all Multi-racials everywhere

Via Scoop.itMixed American Life

Generation-Mixed: A group for all Multi-racials everywhere…

Crossing the Color Line: Racial Migration and the One-Drop Rule, 1600–1860

Via Scoop.itMixed American Life

“Just beyond the one-drop rule’s rhetoric is a reality of mixture and migration. It is hidden in plain sight…”
Show original