He was wearing a professional outfit, leather dress shoes and a brown wool houndstooth coat with the collar popped. However, as I strolled past this man’s cart full of baby wipes, pull-up diapers, fresh fruit and his own box of Rice Krispies, I felt an immense amount of guilt.
I am a black woman who has never dated a black man, and most days I don’t think twice about that.
Nevertheless, I still feel that, by not dating black men, I’m neglecting the shared history, solidarity and future prosperity of my fellow people.
As a young girl and even throughout college, I was frequently annoyed when my peers would suggest that I would magically find a partner if I exclusively pursued black men.
But sometimes, like when I encounter a well-dressed family man with a mutual love for certain breakfast cereals, I wonder if I am failing my people.
After all, 50 years ago in many states it was still illegal for us to marry anyone who was not also black. Although race relations are still far from perfect, I acknowledge the steps toward inclusion that we’ve made.
White guys will never love you like black guys, they would say.
I resented those comments, believing that my love should not be bound to the colour of my skin or anyone else’s.
Though Black men are still twice as likely as Black women to date outside their race, it seems more and more of us are becoming open to dating beyond the color line.
It's complicated Toya Lachon, 43, of Washington, D. Women are taking control of their happiness." Dating interracially can still come with backlash for both Black men and women.
C., says she feels frustrated, hurt and even betrayed when she sees Black men with women of other races, but happy when she sees Black women in an interracial relationship. Lachon, who is seeing a White man, has experienced her share of adverse reaction.
"I've come across a lot of men who tell me I should be ashamed and say things like, "It's not too late to come home" or "He won't know what to do with all of that." I've heard it all. But the negative comments can be more distressing when they come from family or close friends.
They’re in the streets, calling senators and congressmen, attending community board meetings, and holding sign-making parties. But while the political universes of my white friends are cracking open, I’m feeling more inclined than ever to cloister myself.