Friday, May 01, 2009
When Black People Adopt White Children
Newsweek magazine recently ran this article about a Black family who "adopted" a White child. The family structure is a bit unconventional but for all intents and purposes a little White girl is now calling Black people mommy and daddy.
The purpose of the Newsweek article, as far as I can tell, is to reflect on the fact that despite the large number of transracial adoptions in this country, namely where White people adopt children of color, society at large, cannot wrap their minds around Black people raising White children. It makes White people uncomfortable, and suspicious. It makes Black people angry and frustrated. From the article:
"Decades after the racial integration of offices, buses and water fountains, persistent double standards mean that African-American parents are still largely viewed with unease as caretakers of any children other than their own—or those they are paid to look after. As Yale historian Matthew Frye Jacobson has asked: "Why is it that in the United States, a white woman can have black children but a black woman cannot have white children?"
In my opinion the article doesn't break any new ground, but of course it opens up an interesting topic of discussion, as evidenced by the almost 500 posted comments to the article.
And really, when it comes down to numbers and economics, this isn't going to be a new trend. I don't foresee a future of Black people scrambling to adopt White children, but if they wanted to, would that be okay? Is there any reason Black people should consider adopting White children? Indeed if more Black people got in line to raise White people, would that be a surefire way to dismantle racism in this country? You think I'm kidding, but Megachurch minister, the Reverend Creflo Dollar and his wife adopted a White child for just that reason. "It was God's solution for my racist attitude," Dollar told AOL. That's why he adopted his son. Of course, that child is now a man and about to publish a tell-all about growing up in the Dollar household. So stay tuned on that one.
What do you think? Is there a reason Black people should or should not adopt White children? I would love to hear from any White people out there who were raised by Black parents. What was your experience like? And finally, does anyone else feel like the Newsweek author was out of line by printing the fact that the adopted White child's mother was the town prostitute? Isn't that private information? Thoughts?
(Photo of Creflo Dollar and family)