Steven D. McKie (My middle name is only a letter), age 26
WHAT MIX ARE YOU?
I’m French-Canadian Abenaki American Indian, African American, Italian, and Scottish!
WHERE DO YOU CURRENTLY LIVE?
San Francisco, CA
IS THE COMMUNITY YOU LIVE IN NOW DIVERSE?
No, goodness no.
WHERE DID YOU GROW UP?
I grew up in North Augusta, SC. Just a stone's throw from Augusta, GA -- where I was born. I grew up being the only light skin person in any of my classes. Aside from a few African American classmates, I was all alone until 8th grade when we moved to VA.
HOW DID YOUR PARENTS MEET?
Out with friends at a dance club/bar? If I remember correctly. They met in Georgia.
WERE THERE ANY SIGNIFICANT OBSTACLES IN THEIR RELATIONSHIP CORRELATED TO YOUR BACKGROUNDS?
Dad was black and from a mixed background himself, my Mom was lily white. They were raising mixed children in the 90s in small town in SC, so yeah, plenty of issues regarding race (from both their respective families)
HAS YOUR EXTENDED FAMILY ALWAYS BEEN SUPPORTIVE OF YOU BEING MULTIRACIAL?
Definitely have never heard anything negative. Then again, most on my Mom’s side don’t really speak with us. Mostly just the black side of our family that keeps in contact, even then only somewhat.
DID YOU CELEBRATE TRADITIONS FROM BOTH SIDES OF YOUR FAMILY?
Neither of my parents were ever religious. We never had any traditions outside of Thanksgiving, Halloween, Easter, and Christmas. Pretty much celebrated whatever was the standard, Christian norm. Though, we never set foot in church.
WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT YOUR CULTURAL BACKGROUND?
The social culture of my African American side I am very proud of. I try not to pigeon hole myself down to one race though. All of me is equally as good.
WHAT ACTIONS DID YOUR PARENTS TAKE TO TEACH YOU ABOUT YOUR DIFFERENT BACKGROUNDS?
Nothing, just that racist kids were rude to me because their parents don’t know any better. And, that one day it wouldn’t be that way.
DID YOU TALK ABOUT RACE A LOT IN YOUR HOUSEHOLD WHEN YOU WERE GROWING UP?
My Dad made a lot of race based jokes; but that’s only because he loved Richard Pryor and Steve Harvey :)
DO YOU IDENTIFY AS MIXED OR SOMETHING ELSE?
Just say I’m mixed, and what it is I’m mixed with. Just another American, with a fancy pigment.
DOES RACE WEIGH INTO WHO YOU CHOOSE TO DATE?
For the longest time it definitely did. My GF of ~5 years is actually white.
WHAT DOES BEING MIXED MEAN TO YOU?
It means being flexible and that I’m gifted with the ability to be a social chameleon.
DO YOU HAVE A LOT OF FRIENDS WHO ARE MIXED?
Kind of? I have a lot of friends from all over the world. Only a handful of actual mixed friends.
ARE THERE ANY COMMENTS YOU ARE REALLY TIRED OF HEARING FROM PEOPLE IN REGARDS TO RACE/CULTURE?
“You look basically white, so you’re white to us man.” I….what...ugh. Moving on.
WHAT IS YOUR DREAM FOR THE FUTURE OF AMERICA IN REGARDS TO RACE?
I dream of an America flushed with mixed-race babies. Racism is something that can be made a moot point if everyone, and their grandma, is mixed. It’s an inevitability. Until then, we’ll just enjoy paying less for sunscreen.
ANYTHING ELSE YOU WANT TO SHARE?
Never let anyone tell you you belong to a particular race or culture. If you are mixed, you are uniquely you. Not white, not black, not latino, not Chinese. You are an amalgamation of millions of years of selective breeding. Congratulations, you probably have some of the best genes in your friend group. Embrace it, stand together, and work to spread cross-cultural awareness.