During a recent interview on The Grio, Taye Diggs made a statement that some could construe as odd, considering he is African American.
The actor revealed he doesn’t want people to view his 6-year-old son as just Black; he’d rather have his kid embrace being mixed. Taye has a son named Walker with ex-wife, singer Idina Menzel.
“When you [call biracial kids Black], you risk disrespecting that one half of who you are and that’s my fear,” he explains. “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?‘”
Taye feels the same way about how people address President Obama as the first Black president:
“As African-Americans we were so quick to say okay he’s black he’s black, and then there were the white people who were afraid to say he was biracial because who knows. Everybody refers to him as the first black president, I’m not saying it’s wrong, I’m just saying that it’s interesting. It would be great if it didn’t matter and that people could call him mixed. We’re still choosing to make that decision, and that’s when I think you get into some dangerous waters.”
Taye’s opinion on race is discussed in his new book, entitled Mixed Me, which has a lot to do with helping his son understand self-love and self-appreciation. The book is a follow-up to the first about his own childhood: Chocolate Me, which is based on his experiences growing up as a young Black kid in a predominantly White neighborhood.
Diggs wants mixed kids to know they don’t have to default to either of their races, but should take pride in equally representing both.
What do you think?