Race, Culture, Identity

Coming of Age in This American Life

I. As a girl, I learned about racism from my white father. He taught me it was evil which was the exact opposite of his upbringing where racism was as natural as a Carolinian drawl and black eyed peas with salty cured ham hocks and collard greens.  His blonde haired blue-eyed roots were soaked in […]

We Are Criminals, and God Loves Us

Note: This is an excerpt from Deidra’s forthcoming book, One: Unity in a Divided World. *** I am a black woman, living in America. Just last month I walked down the street near a country club in our neighborhood and had a car of three young white men yell unmentionable things to me through their […]

Mestizaje: A Prophetic Identity

After months and months of crazy busy schedules, I finally got some time with my husband to sit down and watch the movie Concussion.  It is a movie all about the NFL and how a meticulous neuropathologist stumbles upon a diagnosis found in retired football players connected to the chronic concussions they sustain during their […]

I Don’t Fit a Label

When it comes to race and culture, I am confused just like I am with most things in life. I have so many roots that it makes it very hard for anyone to put a label on me. It makes most people uncomfortable. We like our labels; we like to know exactly what or who […]

Always a Foreigner, Never Home

My face is the filter through which people see me. It can’t be helped. When people look at me, they see an Asian girl. To some, it’s the face of familiarity, but to most it’s the face of a foreigner. It creates distance, division, and tension. It brings up questions of heritage and place and […]

On “Racial Reconciliation” and “Getting Your Cousins”

“Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection…” -Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., “Letter from a Birmingham Jail”, 1963 Reconcile: to cause people or groups to become friendly again after an argument or disagreement (Merriam-Webster Dictionary) […]

What I Wish My White Friends Knew

When I listen to the talk about diversity, equity and inclusion, I have started to notice a pattern. We talk about diversity in terms of us and other; seeking to understand differences. Dialogue becomes about how my experience, as a person of color is distinct, unique and cumbersome compared to my white friends. We converse […]

Remembering Vincent Chin

His last words were, “It’s not fair.” I remember the first time I read the story about Vincent Chin. It was in Helen Zia’s book, Asian American Dreams: The Emergence of an American People. I was reading it for my senior thesis in seminary, which also became a huge influence on my writing Making Paper […]

In Memoriam of Morality: end quote

It’s hard to look for a good laugh when so many of our channels expose the madness of what seems to be consistent harassment of what some might call . . .   How do you converse and talk about videos and uploads from people on their walk about showing millions and millions what to […]