At my college, I am a member of the African Student Association (ASA). It is basically a group of African kids or people who are interested in Africa and it’s culture who get together and enjoy food, music, and other like-minded people. We have a group message and everyday we have a question of the day. One of the supervising members of the group throws a question out to the group members and it is our job to answer and debate with the other members. Last week, one of the members asked a question that really caught my eye. “Do you think that your life would be better if you were not black?” This question really hit home because as a middle and high school student I really used to think that maybe if I was white my life would be a lot better than it was.
I have talked about this before. The fact that if I was white I think that I would be considered much prettier than I am now as a black woman. I really believed that black women who are equally as beautiful as women of other races are always seen as much less attractive than the other women. In order for a black woman to be considered beautiful we have to possess lighter skin, or “nicer” hair. In order for us to be beautiful, we have to be white.
Academically do I feel like I would be better off if I was white? No. I think my grades spoke for themselves and my race really did not have anything to do with how I did in school. It might have had an influence on the colleges that accepted me but I would never know. Although I don’t think that my race had anything to do with my grades, I do think that my race affected the way that I experienced school. Going to a predominantly white high school where most of the kids weren’t exactly welcoming to “people of color” I didn’t really have to opportunity to make many friends that really liked me for me. Yes, I did have friends of other races but I always found that my race always seemed to be the bud of the joke for them. Race jokes were thrown around, and I got sick of it, so I stopped trying to be their friends.
All-in-All I really don’t think that I would even want to be another race. I don’t think that there is anything wrong with other races, but I also don’t think that there is anything wrong with my race. I love my blackness, and I love being black. I think that black people are magnificent and strong. I admire black people and the struggle that we go through, without giving up. I love being black.