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When a child is born of a mixed union between a black and a white person, white people and the media tend to consider this child to be black. When this child becomes an adult, people will assume he or she is black until informed that there was a white parent as well. As a white person, this used to seem natural to me, since mixed children look more like black people than white people. As I get older and think about these things more, though, I wonder; does this really make any sense, or is this just a default assumption I've unconsciously acquired, with no actual physiological base? Do black people look at mixed children and think that these children are basically white, unless informed there is a black parent in the mix? Or is there some truth to the notion that racially mixed children lean more in appearance towards their non-white parent? (We seem to have the same assumptions concerning mixed white and Asian children, for example)

Yes, inthe United States, the child of a blackand white couple is typically labeled black. Unfortunately, many do not recognize the historical relationship betweenracial categorization and white privilege. In short, whiteness was conceived in the 18th Century as a mark of privilege.Racial categorization was aboutmaintaining the dignity, the citizenship, the rights of white people. It was also about the denying non-whites these same privilegesand rights. It is worth noting that these racial classifications are socialconstructions that have changed throughout history. For instance, people of Irish, Italian, andSlavic heritage were not always considered white in the United States. I strongly suggest the documentary film Race: The Power of An Illusion (http://www.pbs.org/race/000_General/000_00-Home.htm). Nevertheless,I would seriously challenge (i) the idea that mixed black and white children‘just look more like black people than white people’ and (ii) the idea that ‘peoplewill...