We were visiting his family, sitting around the kitchen table, talking about urban wildlife: possums, cougars, squirrels, that sort of thing. Her boyfriend had been hanging out in their backyard when he suddenly shouted to bring the shotgun outside. My boyfriend explained on the car ride home why he couldn’t say anything. He often points out our mutual interest in being marginal where we live—he in black Zambia, I in white America. He to be marginal, to marry a Zambian and become one. I think it might have to do with the desire to be marginal at home. Race relations are so electric in America—the color line like a live wire.“But it was just a raccoon.” What had he thought it was? “A black man.” She turned to me, “No offense.” Heat in my ears, I looked down at my plate, intently cutting a carrot. This was new family—his mother had only just remarried—and he didn’t want to start a fight. He wrote punk songs about Palestine, short stories about Mexican kids. I am mixed race, an immigrant, different wherever I go. To confront this kind of danger and difference in love all the time can be thrilling, for both people. To offer my brownness to white men is still to grant them the only experience that they are denied by definition.
On top of the unavoidably awkward dynamics of a new romance comes unfamiliarity with the other person’s culture that often manifests itself as pure ignorance.
And while some gaffes can be overlooked and corrected with education, others are too painful to ignore or get past.
This did not stop one publication from running a story that low-key lauded Lindsay for her choice to associate with white men, mainly because it counters data that revealed Black women are less likely to date outside of their race.
The headline began, “Unlike New Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay, Black Women…” Twitter immediately commenced dragging the story, accusing the publication of feeding into stereotypes about Black women.
franchise by becoming the first Black Bachelorette, we knew Rachel Lindsay was open to interracial dating.
After all, she was one of women vying for Nick Viall’s heart last season. The politics of interracial dating in this country are complicated, as evidenced by the fact this is the most diverse season of , ever.
Said I had insulted his friends, wouldn’t talk to me for hours, made us leave early. White men have had nothing to battle against or fight for; their identity is this amorphous default.
There are things about dating outside one’s race that run deeper than allegations of disloyalty and a few nasty looks when you walk down the street together.
But make no mistake about it: This is the result of a certain kind of white privilege, not a lack of women of color interested in dating white men or making their love lives public.