29 September 2011 ~ 12 Comments

My channel 4 interview on mixed race identity

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My dear parents in the 60s

How can someone who propagates themselves as a chosen messenger of god advocate such divisive, confused and love-lacking opinion as Pastor Tapiwa Muzvidziwa?
“God”, he says, disapproves of mixed marriages as these are “wrong” and detrimental to the children born of such relationships. Doesn’t he understand that the whole idea of banning interracial and interfaith relationships is deep rooted in racist doctrine to keep the white race “pure”?

I feature in the same Channel 4 4thought series Should we raise children in mixed marriages? this week. My segment airs on Sunday evening but will also be online for readers based outside of the UK who would like to tune in to the debate.

I’ve written about how I grew up in an interfaith and interracial family before and about issues interracial children might face in the Mixed Race series. So I’m not denying that there are complexities that people like myself must deal with, but the fact is that everyone has to come to grips with who they are, even our dear pastor who as a born again Christian assumedly hasn’t always had all the answers available in this beautiful kaleidoscope of experience that we call life.

BBC 2 is also running a mixed race season starting today. Britain in 2011 has proportionately one of the largest mixed population in the Western world, and the season explores the mixed race experience in Britain – and around the world – from the distant past to the present-day, to analyse the mixed race story.

Here are seven stats from the BBC programme website about Mixed Race population in UK that you may not know and that I’d love you to discuss:

Minority ethnic men mix more than minority ethnic women
Minority ethnic men from all groups are more likely to be in inter-ethnic relationships than minority ethnic women. The exception to this are Chinese women who are more likely to be in an inter ethnic relationship than Chinese men. (Source: Lucinda Platt: Ethnicity & Family Relationships within and between ethnic groups. Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Essex).

Full “Mixed” category was first introduced ten years ago
Categorisation for the full ‘Mixed’ group was introduced for the first time in 2001, before which there had been no reliable estimate of the size of the mixed race population (Source: Peter J Aspinall 2000)

Mixed Race are considered most beautiful
This was the conclusion of a major research study, the largest of its kind, undertaken by Dr Michael Lewis, (School of Psychology, Cardiff University) in March 2010.(Source: http://www.perceptionweb.com/abstract.cgi?id=p6626)

Legislation to prohibit race mixing has only recently been abolished in some parts of the world
In several parts of the world, including South Africa during the apartheid era, governments introduced legislation to prohibit race mixing. Laws against “miscegenation” were still in force in 16 American states until they were declared unconstitutional by the US Supreme Court’s verdict in the Loving v Virginia case of 1967. (Source: Loving V Virginia).

Mixed Race is one of the fastest growing minority groups
Growth between 1991 and 2001 for mixed-race was 150% making it the fastest growing minority group. Currently the largest group is the Black Caribbean/White group, however the fastest growing group is Chinese/White. (Source: NS 2001).

Black Caribbeans most likely of Minority Ethnic Groups (BME) to be in inter-ethnic relationships
Black Caribbean men and women were the most likely of any group to be in an inter-ethnic relationship (48% of black Caribbean men and 34 % of black Caribbean women were in inter-ethnic relationships) (Source: Lucinda Platt: Ethnicity & Family Relationships within and between ethnic groups. Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Essex).

Mixed Race at greater risk of violence
In 2002/03, adults from a Mixed Race or Asian background were more likely than those from other ethnic groups to be victims of crime in England and Wales. Almost half (46 per cent) of mixed race adults had been the victim of a crime. (Source: ONS 2003).

Thoughts on any of these or on mixed race in general?

——

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