Racial attitudes in the United States need an overhaul. Latinos can show the way.
Francisco, RE: ‘This baffled sense that Americans don’t know the plain chromatic meaning of the words “black” and “white”’
Honestly, I am an American, 80 years old, white, and liberal. Neither I nor any of my friend -- on the left or right -- are baffled by the binary identity. The one drop rule, black-white identity, was part of the American racial and ethnic identity crazes 100 years ago. Most people from that era who thought that way are nearly extinct today. It’s only the academic-driven identitarians who insist on branding people with these group labels, and unfortunately, they have been successful at re-establishing racist categories as a thing in the USA today. It’s so sad.
Nothing matters except behavior. Keep branding people by group labels, and you are demonstrating and perpetuating racism and bias that we should have materially stamped out by now due to the fantastic progress with civil rights that Republicans historically passed.
What you describe is already well known in America to be a bit of a farce. It is known as the one-drop rule. This mattered because it was codified into law.
Black immigrants in the US are often as confused by America’s taxonomy as Latinos. We are often lumped in with Black Americans whose ancestors were American slaves even though we don’t necessarily share the same culture or history.
There are too many people making a living off the grievance industry for distinction to change any time soon.
Good points. But, please, too many words!
"Is there a lesson here that Americans might consider learning from? I think there is, but it isn’t one anyone wants to hear. The real, long-term solution to America’s racialized ethnic divide is a slow, generation-by-generation erasure of that divide, possible only through enthusiastic race mixing."
Strongly agree with this. It would be very helpful if we could stop emphasizing the differences so much. The change from 5% to 15% from 2010 to 2020 was not driven by manic focus on identity groups; it was driven by the reduction in salience of identity groups in the 80s and 90s.