“When it does come time for me to bring children into this world. It might be better for them to be mixed with an ‘other.'”
I blinked my eyes to make sure I was reading correctly, a Black woman admitting doubts about bringing Black children into the world. I sat down, then stood back up. I stared out the window thinking; of white people who want Blackness eradicated, Black people who are anti-mixing, the many “threats” to the existence of Blackness. I thought about my mother and about my father. A pain shot across my low back, as it does when my nervous system braces. Black babies are the cutest, everyone agrees, even the ones that end up shooting them a few years later. Asian babies are the only ones who can even come close. My cousin, with his chubby, balloon cheeks and brown fingers holding up toys desperately trying to spit out words well before his time. His skin the smoothest darkest brown, the kind that has traveled from Africa to the Caribbean sun, where it gets that special toasted cocoa color. What if there were no more him? What if there were no more Kwasi Enin’s, getting into all 8 Ivy Leagues against all odds, without White privilege. What if there were no more Nina Simone, James Baldwins or Thurgood Marshalls? For us, the struggle is actually real. Let’s not pretend. My fingers flew across the keyboard banging out, “Thank you for being so honest.”
“Honest.” My head fell into my hands. I wanted to reach into the glowing screen and grab her, hug her, tell her not to give up her right to fall in love with whomever she wants. If we gives that up, the ignorance wins. Tell that to all the mothers of dead Black boys. Is a cause, love or anything worth that kind of sacrifice? I wonder as I lie down on the floor, pinned down by a suffocating heaviness. How do you describe the feeling of knowing that a whole group of human beings, people, your people, wonders whether they should even have children?
I thought of the daughter I haven’t yet had, the son who is just an idea. If I marry a White man will their Blackness exist if it isn’t obvious? Will they miss out on the depth, the empathy and the soul that White privilege by definition denies? I wonder.