The division of diversity

Celeaciya Olvera

We cannot help with who we are attracted to nor can we help who we fall in love with. Oftentimes, those people fall across differing racial and ethic lines, resulting in children with mixed race identity People of mixed races experience unique challenges, going through their normal lives while being asked various questions of their identity. But along with being questioned, they bring diversity and importance to their society.
Our identity is one of the most important tools we have for ourselves. Our identity captures our background, our environment we surround ourselves in and the way we view the world around us. Our identity shows our society and our background/culture. Being mixed race, there are questions that are often about identity. Some of those questions frequently consist of “What race are you?”“What race are your parents?” “How do you identify?” etc.
When it comes to certain questions, some people do take offense. They feel as if they are being questioned that they are not “enough” of that particular race or background.
For example, when filling out government documents, there are five general categories that have to do with race. The five categories are “American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, Black or African American, Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and White.”
With government documents, it is difficult for people to completely narrow down what race they are. For Hispanics or Latinos, there are a lot of questions about what category they would fall into. To have a category of “White” can work for some people, although, for Hispanics and Latinos, they did not consider themselves “White.”
Similar to most families that are more in contact with each other, people of mixed race tend to identify with one of a particular race more than the other. There are also certain families that have a mindset to only marry within the same ethnicity. This is a huge identity barrier that people of mixed race carry with them. The feeling of not being included enough with one side of their family often turns them away to their other family where they are more unconditionally loved.
Mixed race individuals are often overlooked as opposed to people that are fully Hispanic, Asian, Black or African American. They bring diversity and new perspectives to communities and unique experiences that most people are not aware of. They show not only the community of different backgrounds, but for themselves as well. There can be mixed races that have discussions amongst themselves to visualize how different each of their families are compared to one another.
To be questioned about your identity brings conversations up, which of course more conversations are needed. With that being said, it is the intention behind the questions or how the questions are presented that can make the conversation feel awkward and uncomfortable.
People of mixed race have hard times going through their normal lives being asked various questions of their identity. But along with being questioned, they bring diversity and importance to their society and themselves. Everyone has a story different from one another and it is our job to listen to each other’s stories and respect each other’s backgrounds.