“You might not tell by looking at Meghan Markle that she is black.”
That’s what conservative commentator Candace Owens said after Duchess Meghan and Prince Harry’s explosive interview with Oprah Winfrey, suggest that Meghan lies about her experience because she is not black enough to be a victim of racism.
This narrative creates a never-ending puzzle that can harm a black person’s sense of self and identity: when you are “too black” for some and not “black enough” for others.
Although Meghan defines herself as “half black and half white” The royal family and their critics can apparently only see one thing: Meghan’s blackness or lack thereof.
“You came in as the first mixed race person to marry into the (royal) family, and did it concern you that you would fit in with it?” Winfrey asked Meghan Sunday. Meghan replied, “I thought about it because they made me think about it.”
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Owens’ controversial remarks and others like her invalidate the racist treatment Meghan has seen – supposedly from the British monarchy and definitely from the UK press – and verges on denying her existence as a biracial woman with a black mother and a white father.
It is deeply disturbing to question a person’s blackness based on their skin color in order to downplay their experience of racial discrimination. Here’s why.
Blacks are not a monolith. There is no such thing as a prototype cookie cutter for what a black person should look or act like, and that is true too Mixed race. Black people come in a wide range of shades and skin tones, including fair-skinned Meghan.
Although colorism does exist and people with lighter complexions are often given preferential treatment over their darker-skinned counterparts, skin color is not an indicator of blackness. And it certainly doesn’t negate the fact that Meghan was exposed to bigotry.
Regardless of whether someone is 100% black or 25% black, blackness can be seen as a threat to the status quo. This is evident in Meghan’s decision not to live my life in fear and flee to America with her family, although many people believe she is fair enough to “fit in” as white.
Even 1 year old Archie is not safe from microaggressions. Meghan said there were nameless palace officials raised questions about the baby’s possible “skin color” and how “dark” it could be. (The couple is is expecting her second child, on Little ones this summer.)
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“If you’ve seen a picture of Archie and you think he suffered from racism against blacks, then I’m a Nigerian prince and I’ll give me your credit card details. It’s so ridiculous,” Owens said said during an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity on Wednesday.
Well he did according to his mother. Meghan told Winfrey Sunday that she and Harry hadn’t waived a title for Baby Archie first mixed royal race since Queen Charlotte was on the throne in the 19th century. She said she was told that the rules didn’t prevent this as subtly This suggests that the color of your then-unborn child may have something to do with it.
Questioning a person’s personal experience of racism based on their skin tone minimizes their struggles and ignores their pain, rather than challenging those responsible to question their own biased thoughts or attitudes that contribute to intolerance.
As a black woman who grew up in a mostly white city, I speak from personal experience. At school, I was “too black” for some students in my community, but when I was visiting family members in other areas, I was bullied for “talking white”.
It’s a confusing gray area that Duchess Meghan – a Los Angeles native who was stereotyped in 2016 as a “(almost) straight from Compton” girl from a “gang-ridden house of her mother” Daily mail heading – can safely relateto.
But who should judge? Who determines whether someone is “black enough” or whether someone is prone to racism? It is not up to society to deprive an individual of his or her identity and experiences, and certainly not up to Owens, who has long been on fire. (Notice Owens ‘Diss from Harry Styles’ Vogue Ball Gown Cover?)
Running isn’t a convenience – something you can turn on when it serves you and turn off when you don’t. So let’s stop asking if someone is “black enough” to justify racism and let’s listen to what Meghan has the guts to say.
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