Culture and “Race”

The Kings of Foggy Bottom
Before integration, black Washingtonians had a color barrier all their own. One family from the wrong side of town found the street
The Washington Post
By Colbert I. King
Sunday, February 1, 2004; Page W08

Since the day she learned to walk, my sister, Lucretia, who is a year older, has always been as stoic as they come. But Lucretia was in tears when she came home that afternoon in June 1956. After hearing her out, our family swallowed yet another bitter taste of life in class-stratified black Washington.

Lucretia had graduated from Dunbar High School a few days earlier and was looking forward to becoming the first King family member to enter college. What she needed was a summer job, so she headed across town to an employment center housed in a D.C. public school building at 14th and Q streets NW. She was interviewed by a male “Negro,” as we called ourselves in those days. He was in the kind of job that made him, at least in our eyes, a professional: He wore a shirt and tie to work and had an office.

It seems clear that the American mulatto group typically described (falsely) as “light-skinned blacks” differ from the “true” American blacks in culture as well as “race.”

You could circle the globe several times with paper describing American black whining about mixed-race folks who have the nerve to be culturally different and practice endogamy.

One comment

  1. I deny it, fellow, because:
    1) You claim that all “whites” are “pure” and that anyone with the dreaded “black blood” isn’t “white.”

    2) You advocate a “one drop” definition of “black but are too cowardly to include Hispanics and Arabs in that definition, even though they often have more “black blood” than the people you are trying to claim as “black.”

    3) If American blacks were one-tenth as mixed as you claim, they would look like Hispanics or Arabs.

    7/13/2004 3:51:18 PM

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *