Perspectives on Race

A Discussion about Events Concerning Race

“Why Would anyone want to be Darker?”

with 3 comments

Earlier this week I went out to dinner with a really good friend of mine and with us were two of her other friends that I didn’t really know. (I’m Black, they are all White) Since we became friends she has taught me a lot of Jewish cultural things and I have taught her Black cultural things to keep us from being so ignorant about the other. While I usually find it offensive when people ask me to educate them on “Blackness” we both have the understanding that I am only speaking for myself and I know she is trying to keep from being so ignorant. Well she decided to ask why her sorority sister (who is one of about 3 Black girls in her sorority) went tanning with them the other day. When I asked what she meant, one of her friends said, “but wouldn’t tanning make her darker?” with a perplexed look on her face. It took a lot for me to swallow what I wanted to say, that not all people hate dark skin and think it’s hideous like you do, and instead I just shrugged and said everyone is different. Everyone, both White and Black, talk about dark skin as ugly, not as an opinion, but as though it’s fact and as though beautiful very dark skinned people are an anomaly.


Written by mzlisarenee

January 30, 2010 at 6:48 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

3 Responses

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  1. I understand your frustration and I also get irritated by that same type of ignorance. But with me, it’s sort of the opposite. I am a fairly light skinned Hispanic. Often times people make the assumption that I should be darker. At the same time however, you can’t be ‘too’ dark. Hispanics from various countries literally have all shades of color, from very light to extremely dark, and it annoys me when people assume that we are all supposed to look the same.


    January 30, 2010 at 7:27 pm

  2. There’s a lot of things I don’t know about African Americans and would probably ask my friends to educate me too.


    January 30, 2010 at 9:20 pm

  3. I think it was very good of you to hold your tongue after what your friend said about why would someone want to be darker. I’m the darkest person in my family because there is a large white portion and have grown accustomed to being “darker” than “normal”. I have no problem about spending time in the sun, but I have found it a harder concept for my white friends to grasp. I guess its just a culture thing.


    January 31, 2010 at 2:14 am

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