Lynnwood man tried to use a home DNA test to qualify as a minority business owner. He was denied — now he’s suing.

Posted in Articles, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2018-09-21 01:10Z by Steven

Lynnwood man tried to use a home DNA test to qualify as a minority business owner. He was denied — now he’s suing.

The Seattle Times
2018-09-13

Christine Willmsen, Seattle Times staff reporter

State and federal programs aim to ensure minority-owned businesses can compete for government contracts after generations of institutional discrimination. A Lynnwood man long identified as white is using DNA ethnicity estimates to claim minority status.

Ralph Taylor says it doesn’t matter what he looks like. Having lived most of his life as a white man, the 55-year-old now considers himself to be multiracial based on DNA test results.

The owner of Orion Insurance Group in Lynnwood also wants the U.S. Department of Transportation to recognize him as a minority so he can gain more deals providing liability insurance to contractors.

Taylor is suing Washington state and the federal government because he was denied a minority-business certification under a program created more than two decades ago to help level the playing field for minority business owners seeking contracts in the transportation industry. He provided no evidence he has suffered socially or economically because of race.

His case is pending with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

In 2010 Taylor began identifying himself as multiracial after a DNA ancestry test estimated he was 90 percent Caucasian, 6 percent indigenous American and 4 percent sub-Saharan African.

He applied for state certification with the Washington Office of Minority & Women’s Business Enterprises (OMWBE) so Orion Insurance Group would be considered a minority business.

Ralph Taylor (Steve Ringman/The Seattle Times)
Ralph Taylor (Steve Ringman/The Seattle Times)

With no criteria defining a minority race or ethnicity, OMWBE eventually approved Taylor. But that same state agency, which also manages the U.S. Department of Transportation certification, decided he was Caucasian under that program’s procedures and denied his application…

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“We Were All Just the Black Kids”: Black Mixed-Race Men and the Importance of Adolescent Peer Groups for Identity Development

Posted in Articles, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, Social Science, United Kingdom, United States on 2018-09-19 15:50Z by Steven

“We Were All Just the Black Kids”: Black Mixed-Race Men and the Importance of Adolescent Peer Groups for Identity Development

Social Currents
First Published online 2018-09-19
DOI: 10.1177/2329496518797840

Jennifer Patrice Sims, Assistant Professor of Sociology
University of Alabama, Huntsville

Remi Joseph-Salisbury, Senior Lecturer in Education Studies
Leeds Beckett University, Leeds, United Kingdom

While critical Mixed-Race studies (CMRS) has paid attention to the intersections of race, gender, and sexuality in sampling and analysis, most studies disproportionately focus on women. This means that generalizability of findings and theories to men should not become axiomatic. Regarding black Mixed-Race people, for example, the theory that rejection from black people is influential for many black Mixed-Race individuals’ identity development is derived from interviews with mainly women. Explicitly noting that these processes are not as applicable for men, yet offering no accompanying theorizing as to the influence of gendered interactions on men’s racial identity development, appears to have become the standard. Therefore, bringing together data from two studies that explored black mixedness in the United States and the United Kingdom, this article joins a nascent literature on the gendered experiences of Mixed-Race men. Our analysis shows that, unlike black Mixed-Race women, black Mixed-Race men’s mixedness is often constructed as compatible with the heteronormative gender identities that are constituted in racialized peer groups. As such, black Mixed-Race men are able to cultivate a sense of strategic sameness with same gender black peers. This and other findings are discussed in light of their implications for CMRS’s intersectional theories of identity development.

Read or purchase the article here.

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Multiracials and Civil Rights: Mixed-Race Stories of Discrimination [Review]

Posted in Articles, Book/Video Reviews, Law, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2018-08-30 01:27Z by Steven

Multiracials and Civil Rights: Mixed-Race Stories of Discrimination [Review]

new york journal of books
2018-08-27

L. Ali Khan, Professor of Law
Washburn University, Topeka, Kansas

Tanya Katerí Hernández, Multiracials and Civil Rights: Mixed-Race Stories of Discrimination (New York: New York University Press, 2018)

“General readers, with no initiation in law, will learn quite a bit about racial discrimination, civil rights laws, and how academics grapple with theoretical difficulties underlying race relations in the realm of law.”

In Multiracials and Civil Rights, Fordham law professor Tanya Hernández demonstrates that discrimination perpetrated against blacks also targets mixed-race persons, called multiracials. Contrary to popular expectations, multiracialism has not alleviated racism. Deviations from the hundred-percent whiteness (a racial myth) continue to inform social constructions of race, racial awareness, discrimination, and the application of civil rights laws.

Historically, the one-drop rule has required that a person with any degree of black ancestry must identify solely as black. With diverse immigration and interracial procreation, multiracialism is on the rise. Since 2000, multiracials are free to identify with more than one race. Yet such is the sociology of racism that any fraction of blackness, visible or hidden, reduces multiracials into black persons, discounting their other racial traits.

The hundred-percent whiteness paradigm formulates and protects the white privilege, a source of unearned advantage, and offers measly concessions to any dilution of whiteness. Therefore, non-whiteness is potentially subject to racial discrimination actionable under law…

Read the entire review here.

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Hawaiian Family Drama From Viola Davis, Lisa Takeuchi Cullen Set at ABC (Exclusive)

Posted in Articles, Arts, Asian Diaspora, Media Archive, Oceania, United States, Women on 2018-08-28 02:00Z by Steven

Hawaiian Family Drama From Viola Davis, Lisa Takeuchi Cullen Set at ABC (Exclusive)

The Hollywood Reporter
2018-08-22

Rebecca Sun

Former Time journalist Lisa Takeuchi Cullen will write ''Ohana,' based on Kiana Davenport's 1994 novel 'Shark Dialogues.'
Lisa Takeuchi Cullen (Matt Dine; Courtesy of Plume)

ABC is headed back to Hawaii.

The network is teaming with Viola Davis and Julius Tennon’s JuVee Productions to develop the hourlong drama ‘Ohana. The potential series is based on Kiana Davenport’s 1994 novel Shark Dialogues and follows four hapa women who reunite when their grandmother, a mystic known as a kahuna, dies mysteriously and leaves them the family plantation.

Former Time staff writer and foreign correspondent Lisa Takeuchi Cullen will pen the adaptation.

“So many Hawaii-set stories have been told from the white point of view,” Cullen tells The Hollywood Reporter. “This is a story we’re passionate about telling from the point of view of native Hawaiians — Pacific Islanders, people of Asian descent and people of hapa heritage.”

Each of the four protagonists is of a different mixed ethnicity — half-white, half-Japanese, half-Filipino and half-black — and their unexpected shared inheritance will force them to overcome years of jealousies, misunderstandings, resentments and secrets…

Read the entire article here.

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Zazie Beetz on ‘Atlanta,’ Her Emmy Nomination and Impostor Syndrome

Posted in Articles, Arts, Interviews, Media Archive, United States on 2018-08-28 01:42Z by Steven

Zazie Beetz on ‘Atlanta,’ Her Emmy Nomination and Impostor Syndrome

The New York Times
2018-08-24

Aisha Harris, Assistant Television Editor, Culture Desk


Zazie Beetz received her first Emmy nomination, for her work in “Atlanta” on FX. Guy D’Alema/FX

Zazie Beetz has had quite the year. The burgeoning actor returned for Season 2 of FX’s critically acclaimed dramedy “Atlanta,” unpacking more layers of her character Van in some particularly memorable episodes. (One scene from the episode “Champagne Papi” took on new life thanks to Drake, who included one of her lines at the end of his No. 1 hit “In My Feelings.”) This summer, she reached an even wider audience with “Deadpool 2,” receiving accolades for her performance as Domino, a mutant whose superpower is luck.

And last month Ms. Beetz received her first Emmy nomination, for best supporting actress in a comedy for “Atlanta.” As someone who suffers from severe anxiety, however, the awards recognition and the increased visibility that comes with it have not been easy to process. “I don’t even know if I should say this publicly, but I feel kind of like, ‘O.K., cool,’” she said.

“I’m glad that shows like ‘Atlanta’ and our other contemporaries are having an opportunity to be seen and to be appreciated,” she continued, “and I’m glad that I can contribute in that way. That’s really what I’m happy about.”

In a phone interview, Ms. Beetz discussed exploring new facets of Van, her own biracial identity and experiencing anxiety and impostor syndrome in Hollywood. These are edited excerpts from the conversation…

Read the entire interview here.

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Katherine Johnson, who hand-crunched the numbers for America’s first manned space flight, is 100 today

Posted in Articles, Biography, History, Media Archive, United States, Women on 2018-08-27 21:50Z by Steven

Katherine Johnson, who hand-crunched the numbers for America’s first manned space flight, is 100 today

Cable News Network (CNN)
2018-08-26

Saeed Ahmed, Senior Editor, Trends, CNN Digital

Emanuella Grinberg, Digital news reporter

Katherine Johnson worked in the "Computer Pool" at NASA.
Katherine Johnson worked in the “Computer Pool” at NASA.

(CNN)—Katherine Johnson, the woman who hand-calculated the trajectory for America’s first trip to space, turns 100 today.

Before the arrival of electronic data processors, aka, computers in the 1960s, humans — mainly women — comprised the workforce at NASA known as the “Computer Pool.”

Black women, especially, played a crucial role in the pool, providing mathematical data for NASA’s first successful space missions, including Alan Shepherd’s 1961 mission and John Glenn’s pioneering orbital spaceflight

Read the entire article here.

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Representation Is More Than Skin Color

Posted in Articles, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, United States on 2018-08-27 14:55Z by Steven

Representation Is More Than Skin Color

The New York Times
2018-08-27

Bianca Vivion Brooks, Host
ASK VIV


The Poet, Robert Hayden. Pach Brothers/Corbis, via Getty Images

Is it enough to look like the artist if you do not recognize yourself in the art?

I remember the first time I fell in love with poetry.

I was in 10th grade, and my world literature teacher, Ms. Joe, had assigned us the poem “Those Winter Sundays” by Robert Hayden. I read the poem and at once found myself engrossed in my own memory. I, too, recalled the coldness of my childhood home and the “austere and lonely offices” of my father’s love.

In his verses, Hayden made me feel seen. The poem provided a kind of relief, to know that my childhood was not a complete anomaly, and that others had grown up in similar spaces where love was convoluted by anger and loneliness. That day Robert Hayden became my favorite poet. I held on to this particular poem for years, memorizing it not only for the comfort it provided, but also as a reminder of what good art could do.

Five years later, I discovered Robert Hayden was black. It was the first day of my African-American Literature seminar at Columbia, and I was skimming the syllabus while deciding whether or not to enroll in the course. There in italics, just beneath James Baldwin’sNotes of a Native Son” read Words in the Mourning Time (1970) by Robert Hayden. I Googled a picture of my favorite poet and laughed aloud. “So he’s black,” I thought to myself…

Read the entire article here.

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The mixed-race experience: ‘There are times I feel like the odd one out’

Posted in Articles, Arts, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, United Kingdom on 2018-08-26 23:34Z by Steven

The mixed-race experience: ‘There are times I feel like the odd one out’

The Guardian
2018-08-26

Alex Moshakis

‘It has given people a sense of belonging’: photographer Tenee Attoh on her photography project.
‘It has given people a sense of belonging’: photographer Tenee Attoh on her photography project. Composite: Tenee Attoh

A series of portraits of mixed-race people from around the world has cast new light on how we see ourselves

Last year the photographer Tenee Attoh began taking portraits of multiracial friends and acquaintances against a mottled black background at the Bussey Building in Peckham, southeast London. Attoh is half-Dutch on her mother’s side, half-Ghanaian on her father’s, and identifies as mixed-race. Born in the UK, she spent most of the first 23 years of her life in Accra and Amsterdam, shuttling between cities and cultures, an experience she found enlightening but problematic. “On the one hand it allows you to develop a different understanding of the world,” she says of her duality. “But there’s still a lot of ignorance in society. People perceive you as either black or white, and you’re not – you’re mixed.”

Working in London, Attoh heard similar stories from other mixed-race people, and soon she began publishing her images online (at mixedracefaces.com and on Instagram) alongside small texts that allowed her subjects to share personal thoughts on identity, race and self, something they couldn’t do elsewhere. Following the death of her mother, to whom the series is dedicated, the project helped Attoh dissect her own multiracial experience – what it means to be connected to two worlds at once, and how society perceives that condition – but it has also sparked an open forum on diversity. “It’s not a topic people usually talk about,” Attoh says. “So the website has become a platform for people with mixed heritage. It’s given a lot of them a sense of belonging.”…

Read the entire article here.

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Tanya Katerí Hernández’s “Multiracials and Civil Rights”

Posted in Articles, Law, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2018-08-25 02:16Z by Steven

Tanya Katerí Hernández’s “Multiracials and Civil Rights”

The Page 99 Test
2018-08-08

Marshal Zeringue

Tanya Katerí Hernández is the Archibald R. Murray Professor of Law at Fordham University School of Law, where she co-directs the Center on Race, Law & Justice as its Head of Global and Comparative Law Programs and Initiatives.

She applied the “Page 99 Test” to her new book, Multiracials and Civil Rights: Mixed-Race Stories of Discrimination, and reported the following:

The Page 99 Test is like some numerical sorcery from a Jorge Luis Borges story, mythical and unfathomable yet accurate all at the same time. On page 99 of Multiracials and Civil Rights: Mixed-Race Stories of Discrimination, I describe how the U.S. government refused to add a “multiracial” category to its list of racial categories on the decennial census form in 1997, and instead started permitting respondents to select as many racial categories apply to their racial identity. The page then notes that the most zealous of multiracial category proponents were not satisfied by this government method of enumerating the population of racially mixed residents “because multiple box checking does not directly promote a distinct multiracial identity.” Page 99’s insight into the entire book though is revealed in the assessment that the significance of the census racial category debate:

extends beyond the actual decision of how mixed-race persons should be counted. What is most salient is how the struggles over the census racial categories have fostered a discourse of exalting personal racial identity and characterizing any incursions on expressions of personal identity as a civil rights issue in of itself absent any mixed-race specific material inequality.

Read the entire article here.

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“A Part, and Apart”: Passing and Belonging as a Multiracial Person

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Autobiography, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, Passing, United States on 2018-08-24 21:14Z by Steven

“A Part, and Apart”: Passing and Belonging as a Multiracial Person

Psychology Today
2018-08-21

Tiffany McLain, LMFT
San Francisco, California

Here’s how to navigate passing and belonging as a multiracial person.

Tiffany note: For the past few months, I have been writing about the experience of white mothers of biracial children. For the next set of articles in this series, I will be sharing the stories of white fathers of biracial children. The following article is a brief interlude that invites us to consider the experience of the biracial person who has been raised by a white mother, despite being multiethnic.

The following article is written by Bay Area psychotherapist, Deva Segal, MFT. In it, she describes the experience of being a light-skinned biracial person in a society that desires a clear binary when it comes to racial identifications…

…Over the course of my life, I have identified myself in many ways: half Indian-half White; just White; Other; South Asian; Desi; multiethnic; biracial; multiracial; light-skinned Indian; light-brown-but-probably-needs-to-go-back-in-the-toaster-a-little-bit-longer. In recent years, I have identified a “publicly white person and privately a person of color” in efforts to acknowledge my privilege. Still, that doesn’t always fit. Half my story is gone. Owning my own experience as a woman of color without apology while still kinda passing for white is a delightful grab bag of identity crises…

Read the entire article here.

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