A week after turning 38, I strode onto an outdoor stage, took my place, and looked out at the audience. Mostly, those gathered were strangers to me, except for my mother, who sat in the second row, her smile covered by her face-mask. But I could see the unwavering support in her eyes.
I began: “Over the course of my 38 years, I’ve been asked hundreds of times ‘What are you?’ My answer has always been the same. ‘I’m Biracial. I’m half-Black and half-White.’”
Having the opportunity to share my experiences as a Biracial person who has always claimed the full spectrum of Black, White and in-between was, in many ways, the realization of a lifelong dream. I’d always said “I’m Biracial” and, while most people accepted that, it was a different experience to invite others to reconsider race as much more than a binary construct.
According to data from the US Census Bureau, multiracial and multiethnic Americans mark the fastest-growing segment of American society. Between 2010 and 2020, the multiracial population increased 276%.
Biracial and multiethnic Americans are vastly underrepresented and there is a need for inclusive, honoring and uplifting representation that presents Biraciality as a positive experience. I hope my TEDx talk can be one such resource. While it’s been wonderful to have support from family and friends, my talk isn’t really about me. It’s about those who need to know that they deserve to be embraced and included exactly as they are. I hope you’ll watch, comment, and share!