Taye Diggs doesn’t want you to call his son black. Instead, you should call him “mixed”. In a recent interview, he spoke about how he wants the world to see his son based on his race.
I don’t want my son to be in a situation where he calls himself black and everyone thinks he has a black mom and a black dad, and then they see a white mother, they wonder, ‘Oh, what’s going on’.
Diggs added that to him, President Obama isn’t the first black president of the United States; instead, he’s the first mixed president. He found it interesting that white people would call Obama the first black president and black people would be okay with it; even though he has a white mother. To Diggs, it could be “dangerous” if we keep choosing to make that decision, to call a mixed person black.
Naturally, Digg’s words polarized people. Some supported him, applauding his decision and saying how he raises his son is entirely up to him. Others think he’s naive and misguided.
Race has clearly influenced Diggs in how he’s choosing to raise his son. His first book, Chocolate Me!, was inspired by his own experiences in life. When growing up, he was teased for his looks and his complexion. And his new book, Mixed Me!, is based on his son.
Diggs has his heart in the right place, but he’s living in a fantasy world. Due to centuries of racism, we’re at the point where anyone with a parent who’s even half-black is considered a black person. It’s no accident that people like Mariah Carey and Barrack Obama regard themselves as black more than anything else.
If you look black–no matter how mixed your blood is–people will treat you the same way they treat a black. What Diggs is doing is jeopardizing his son’s future because his son will grow up believing he’s not black, but other people will treat him like he’s black.
And this also makes you wonder: how does Diggs regard his black color? Is he ashamed of it? Whatever he’s thinking, his decision to raise his son this way might have nasty repercussions after some years.