Posted by Paul Devlin:
Can a white person born in the U.S with family roots in South Africa identify him or herself as “African American?” What about an American with Morroccan or Egyptian ancestry? Also African American? Why do we often use the term African American to describe a black person, but rarely use European American to describe a white person? Besides, no one is really white or black – we’re all flesh color (I can prove it with the scopes that measure color in my edit room). When you start to examine it closely, the language collapses.
Years ago, I read an interview with Marlon Brando, who said that when asked to identify his race on a form, he wrote “Human.” I’ve followed his lead ever since.
Jessica Care Moore takes on the absurdity of racial labeling in this burst of energy performed at the finals of the National Poetry Slam in Portland, Oregon.