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    Why Don’t We Just Stop Counting?

    Why Don’t We Just Stop Counting?

    The New York Times reports on the inconsistency of how various government agencies count the races:

    The federal Department of Education would categorize Michelle López-Mullins — a university student who is of Peruvian, Chinese, Irish, Shawnee and Cherokee descent — as “Hispanic.” But the National Center for Health Statistics, the government agency that tracks data on births and deaths, would pronounce her “Asian.” And what does Ms. López-Mullins’s birth certificate from the State of Maryland say? It doesn’t mention her race.

    Why don’t we just stop counting?  What purpose does it serve anymore, other than to perpetuate racial divides and entitlements based on criteria which no longer have meaning.

    My neighbors are a mixed race couple one of whom was born here and is white, while the other immigrated here from South America.  Both are physicians.  Their children bear the Anglo-father’s last name, they spoke only English at home, speak English without an accent, went to private schools and elite northeastern colleges.  Their skin color is no darker than most of their schoolmates, and they do not even “look Hispanic.”

    Yet one day when one of those kids was applying to college a post card mistakenly was put in our mailbox from the multicultural recruitment office of an Ivy League university inviting the neighbor’s kid to visit a campus multicultural event.  I assume the child had checked the Hispanic box on the application.  Why does that child get recruited while mine do not?

    My wife’s side of the family were the descendants of Jews who were expelled from Spain and fled to Turkey. all the while retaining the Spanish language over the centuries, with Spanish spoken at home in New York as recently as the mid-20th century.  Should my kids have checked the “Hispanic” box in order to gain favorable admission treatment?

    Our system of racial and ethnic categorization is outdated and now serves a negative purpose.  Get rid of it.

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    Comments


    My mom just died last week and on her death certificate there was a box asking if she was Hispanic. I put "decline to answer."

    "So there!" I thought. She was an American, descended from many different people of different nationalities and origins. How far back do they want to go anyway? Creation?

    I refuse to answer when asked my race or if I really get feisty I put NOYFB.


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