Half and Half

Benjamin Bratt, who is half-Peruvian, tells PEOPLE that a family film celebrating Latino culture is perfect in the midst of President Donald Trump‘s first year in office.”


That’s a very important detail, that he’s HALF Hispanic. Because if he was not Hispanic, would his words or idea be worth any less? Or what if he was fully Hispanic? Does that make someone’s opinions more valuable?

A similar example would be former President Obama.

We wanted to call him the first black president and he, to a great extent, looks the part. This title is, of course, overlooking the fact that he was raised by his white mother and step-father.

This is why anyone who wants to make themselves feel more intelligent than the rest of the room will gladly point out that as of 2017 we have had 44 and 1/2 white presidents.

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My point being is you get to represent who you want to represent, not based on your genetics. The best example of this would be Ariana Miyamoto. The first Black Miss Japan.

Miss Japan Ariana Miyamoto has resolved to use her new-found fame to help fight racial prejudice (AFP Photo/Toru Yamanaka)


She is truly a bi-racial hero, in my opinion, because she was raised in Japan, by her Japanese mother. She spent a few years in Highschool living with her African American father but immediately returned to Japan. Why? Because she was Japanese. Her heart was Japanese, her soul was Japanese. Even when the pageant photo collage came out and I saw her image among a sea of contestants all I could think was. ‘That one has a tan.’

Countries like Singapore and Mayalsia send mixed race contestants all the time. With immigration the way it is there have been black representatives from France, Croatia, even Isreal. But in Japan, there was an outcry- “A black woman can not represent Japan!”- so magically she was no longer 1/2. She was, for all intents and purposes, 100% black.

Yes, I know the Japanese term Hafu means 1/2 but sprinkled into casual conversation it’s spoken like a different race entirely.

Ryan Surdick wrote an article about how people come up to her baby, to comment on how cute a Hafu is with his big Hafu eyes.

The word “half” often comes up when people meet my son for the first time. Statements such as “Yappari, hāfu ga kawaii” (“Just like they say, ‘halfs’ are cute”) or “Hāfu no me ga okii” (“Half [kids’] eyes are big”) are fairly common in first encounters. As with most transgressions in Japan, I would usually respond with a polite smile and say “thank you,” bury any misgivings and chalk the experience up to “cultural differences.”


That brings us to the subject of the day Meghan Markle. Who, the entire internet wants you to know is black.

Meghan Markle, Doria Radlan

Much like President Obama, she is 1/2 black but no one seems too concerned with her white side. Except for whoever added this to her Wikipedia page-


In November 2017, the New England Historic Genealogical Society confirmed that Markle is a descendant of King Edward III through her father’s ancestor, Rev. William Skipper, who immigrated to Boston, Massachusetts in New England in 1639. Through this link, Markle is a 17th cousin of Prince Harry. 

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Here is my issue. Megan Markle for the majority of her acting career (namely her role in Suits) looks like this-

In various interviews (from her time on the show, pre-Prince Harry) she expressed how she disliked having to hide her African American side. She went as far as to say, “I wasn’t black enough for the black roles and I wasn’t white enough for the white ones, leaving me somewhere in the middle as the ethnic chameleon who couldn’t book a job.”

Basically, in Hollywood’s eyes, she defaulted to white. On her filmography, there are also many occasions where she played Hispanic. (I wonder if she would be allowed to give an opinion on the current state of Hispanic oppression under President Trump. )

My issue is she is now being asked to be a representative for African Americans by means of ‘rocking her natural hair.’


Let’s say she only kept her White/Hispanic look because it landed her acting gigs.

Going with that idea: let’s say, now that she is going to take on the position of a Royal, devoting her life to humanitarian work she no longer feels the need to keep her hair straight- cool. Congrats!

Straightening hair takes a lot of time/energy/products. It is well within the realm of possibility that she will be rocking her natural curls out of personal comfort.

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But for if there is a possibility that she simply likes keeping her hair straight- the internet needs to STFU.

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