If ‘Black Lives Matter’, then stop race mixing!

Interracial couple - Illustration by BLITISH

Race mixing, otherwise known as ‘miscegenation’, according to the Oxford dictionary is: “the interbreeding of people considered to be of different racial types [through marriage, cohabitation or sexual relations].” The historical context of the term meant that it typically implied disapproval, negativity, and an act which White Supremacists fought against — and still do to this day. Hence why more neutral terms such as ‘interracial’, ‘inter-ethnic’ or ‘cross-cultural’ relationships are more common in contemporary usage.

‘If I date outside my black race, am I anti-black?’ — Anonymous

History tells us that interracial relations were once a taboo and even seen as an act of crime. Anti-miscegenation laws were first introduced in the late seventeenth century in North America to prevent white and black folks from marrying and entering into sexual relationships (see Loving v. Virginia). History also tells us that sexual relations between whites and blacks have not always been of the romantic nature, but instead a demonstration of the power possessed by plantation owners over their so called ‘slaves’.

The slave master’s thirst.

Since the 16th Century, the black body has been seen as less than, on one hand, and an object to be fetishised over, on the other. It would often be the case that slave masters would rape the black female body in order to both derive pleasure by turning their own selfish interests into a form of penetrative punishment, whilst also ensuring the steady influx of slaves on their plantation through the reproduction of illegitimate offspring.

Loving v. Virginia.

This revolutionary case demonstrated the fight between an interracial couple and the state of Virginia against the anti-miscegenation laws which prevented a black individual from being legally married to a white individual. But was this black lady’s act of love in this case a demonstration of anti blackness? Not necessarily…

(Read the full case here: https://www.oyez.org/cases/1966/395)

Both these examples show that there is an ingrained anti-blackness within our society that has been nurtured for centuries and will take further centuries to be debunked. Loving v. Virginia was a 1967 case which at the height of racism and segregation, (bearing in mind that The Civil Rights Act of 1964 terminated the need for segregation in the US), meant that a lot of black people may have felt that her interest in a white man was a demonstration of anti-blackness and possibly self hatred. In those times, this view would have been understandable seeing as the heated hatred between the two groups were at its peak and, despite the outcome of the case and the new laws, it didn’t seem to be subsiding. Hatred was hatred and racism was racism; once ingrained in an individual, not even laws can make them change.

Ingrained Anti-blackness.

Anti-blackness can be defined as being “resistant or antagonistic to black people or their values or objectives”. The notion of ‘ingrained anti-blackness’ is not an archaic term which no longer exists today, in fact it not only exists within some (not all) individuals in the white tribe, but also within the black race itself. It is possible for a black individual to be anti-black through self hatred or the act of diminishing their black counterparts and what they stand for. This is often seen on social media and some magazine publications where a black man will be seen holding on to a white woman with his right hand in a warm embrace, and at the same time belittle black women with his left hand by slapping unto her the very stereotypes that the black community seek to fight against — Black women are too loud’, ‘Black women are ugly’, ‘Black women are aggressive.’

These are all examples of self hatred because when a black man is allowed to date outside his race so freely and still chooses to use the excuse of having a white female trophy on his arm to render the women of his own race as less capable or deserving of love, despite having a mother and most likely a sister(s), is a man who cannot possibly see his own worth.

If ‘Black Lives Matter’, then shouldn’t we stop race mixing?

Finally, my input on the issue of whether or not an individual can love him or herself, as being a member of the black community, and still enter into interracial relationships is simple.

Yes we can!

When you look at the history behind why this topic is in need of a conversation in the first place, it is sad that race has been reduced to this cat and mouse game which sees one group dominate and prey over the other. The case of Loving v. Virginia is a fight for love, which can appear in any skin colour, be it with persons of the same ethnic group or otherwise. To suggest that dating outside one’s race is as a result of anti-blackness or lack of support for the #blacklivesmatter movement is dangerous and a societal setback. It suggests that all white people are against black culture, reasoning and independence. It suggests that the #blacklivesmatter movement is for blacks only, when in fact the movement purports to show that the black experience and the black life is just as important as anybody else’s which needs all races to push it forward; a campaign for racial equality may start with one race but it takes all races to make a real change. And lastly, it suggests that all black men (and women) date outside their race to avoid confronting their own self hate which is not always the case.

The answer to whether or not a black individual is anti-black for dating outside their race is subjective and cannot be given a ‘one size fits all’ approach.

By disagreeing with this ideology, this post does not seek to be politically correct but rather takes a common sense view that the separation of the races is not the answer to white supremacy (or even police brutality). Again, the #blacklivesmatter movement is not a campaign for black supremacy, a hate march or a cry for segregation between the races, it is about unity and equality! if #blacklivesmatter equals ‘lets stop mixing our races’, then feminism equals an end to heterosexuality. It is disheartening to see that the many decades of slavery, segregation, racism etc. has dug such a big hole in our society.

Will our ideas of race ever change?

By Ope.