I found this really interesting article today, and I just had to share it because it speaks volumes. Our country is becoming more integrated with various ethnicities, yet it’s very polarized in politics. On average, the Republican party seems to be lily White, and the Democratic party seems to be more inclusive with various ethnicities, including Black and Hispanic. What’s the reason for this? I don’t have a conclusive answer. However, I speculate, but it won’t be on this blog. Instead, I will leave that up to mediums that focus on politics. I have no time (or desire) to debate anyone about my beliefs (anymore) on a blog.
So where does that leave the interracial couples?
Joseph and I have similar political beliefs, but I must admit, my beliefs have been changing. I won’t divulge in my beliefs, but I do constantly wonder, “Where are the interracial couples at these conventions and in the media?” I can name a few, including Mia Love who defies the ideology of the “average” Black woman by being a Republican, a Mormon, and married to a White man in Utah. Besides her and a few White male politicians, I have nothing. That’s pathetic for a country such as ours. We’re advancing in so many ways except in the area of real diversity.
In U.S. Politics, Where Are the Interracial Couples?
Though the latest census data confirms that the number of interracial couples in America has grown significantly in recent years, there is still one place in American society where their numbers remain largely invisible: the campaign trail.
Despite our country electing a president who is of mixed race, mixed-race couples remain a rarity in American politics.
The furor that erupted over coverage of Republican vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan’s admission that he once dated a black woman raises an interesting question, with few easy answers. If society is becoming increasingly multiracial, then why don’t those leading society, or running for office to do so, reflect that? Why aren’t there more interracial couples in American politics and government?
According to political consultant Michael Goldman, who has advised the late Ted Kennedy and current Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, the lack of multiracial families in politics is not that surprising. The reason, he explained, is that having a spouse of a different race still represents a political liability. “To be as ordinary as possible is the goal for a candidate,” Goldman said, adding that most voters feel comfortable voting for someone they can relate to. Since most people still marry people of the same race, for many voters a candidate with a spouse of a different race is simply less relatable. He drew comparisons to the struggle faced by candidates who practice a different religion than the majority of their constituents.
New York public advocate Bill de Blasio has not allowed such concerns to deter him from a career in politics. He is mounting a campaign to become New York City’s mayor. Should the Democrat win, he and his family would make history. De Blasio is white. His wife Chirlane is black. De Blasio admitted, however, in an interview with The Root, that the unique challenges multiracial families, including his own, have faced, can be a deterrent to entering politics. “If you’re an interracial family you’re still dealing with a certain amount of challenge from society around you just in having that family and in trying to make that family work.” He explained that the glare of the public eye that politics brings could make coping with those challenges even tougher.
Echoing Goldman’s sentiments, he said, “Society as a whole is not totally acclimated to interracial families yet.” He added, “We can’t think of another black-white couple active in politics.”
Society better get ready because we’re not going anywhere, and we’re not limiting our lives due to other people’s ignorance. Read more of the article here.