10/20/97 Letter to Virginia Delegate Puller
October 20, 1997
The Honorable Linda T. Puller
P.O. Box 146
Mt Vernon, VA 22121
Dear Delegate Puller:
I would like to discuss my interest in introducing legislation with regards to multiracial identity. Also, I have enclosed relevant materials and hope they will aid you in your decision.
I am a white man married to a black woman with 2 multiracial children. We live in Alexandria, VA. I am a member of an organization called Project RACE. Project RACE, founded in 1991, is a nonprofit organization headquartered in Roswell, GA dedicated to advocacy for the rights of multiracial Americans.
The concept of multiracial identity is nothing new. It's as old as the concept of race itself. Currently, in the Commonwealth of Virginia, multiracial children and adults do not have the option of selecting multiracial on forms that ask for their racial background. This oversight, whether deliberate or accidental, forces them to choose one race or parent over another. This choice can cause tension in families and is detrimental to the social development of children who already have a difficult time in American society. Children and adults with more than one race in their background should have the right to be all that they are and not be forced to choose one race over another for any reason.
Currently, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is considering the addition of new category, called multiracial, to the U.S. Census and all other government forms that collect racial data. Their recommendations will be announced the week of October 27, 1997. While it not known what their recommendation will be, it is widely believed that they will not add the category, due to intense lobbying and racial politics on the behalf of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the National Council of La Raza (NCLR). The NAACP and NCLR have taken the stance that allowing multiracials to identify correctly and accurately would somehow render all civil rights for minorities null and void. This is not an exaggeration. It is a lie based on Jim Crow ideology and not on any kind of scientific analysis. These organizations are not concerned with statistical accuracy, they are concerned with maintaining their political power at the expense of children and adults who are already discriminated against on all sides.
I am asking you as a member of Project RACE and more importantly, as the father of 2 multiracial children to help end the prejudice and discrimination against them. Take a stand for the children of interracial unions by allowing them the right to be who they are and not have to hide half their heritage and genetic makeup.
Currently, five states (Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Ohio) have enacted legislation. Two other states (Florida and North Carolina) have adopted the multiracial classification by administrative mandate. Two other states (Minnesota and Texas) have introduced legislation to add the classification.
I have enclosed information from Project RACE and other sources that details the reasons why this category is necessary. I hope to hear from you soon. Thank you.
James A. Landrith, Jr.
cc: Susan Graham, Executive Director, Project RACE
James Landrith is the notorious editor and publisher of The Multiracial Activist and The Abolitionist Examiner, two cyber-rags dedicated to freedom from oppressive racial categorization. Landrith can be reached by email at: email@example.com or at his personal website/blog.