Ethnic Ambiguity 

Today’s post is inspired by a Facebook friend of mine that was mistaken for being Latinx when she is Caucasian. I feel for her because I have been in that same boat many times in my life. In a previous post, I mentioned I am Interracial. My heritage is African, Middle Eastern, Native American and European. The biggest question I get is “What are you?” That’s when I take a big sigh and run off the list.

Most times though I identify as being a Black woman. My mom is Black, I look like her, I am black. End of story. (Obama is mixed too. Everyone called him the first Black President, not the first Mixed President. Ok?)  However, when it comes to the entertainment field, there are some advantages and disadvantages to not being immediately identifiable as far as my race is concerned. 

Pros:

Anything in theatre or film and television that take place in modern day, will take me on as an actress. Because I look Non-Descript like many others and can be fluid in many roles.

I have played a Middle Eastern character before (it’s not a far stretch since it makes up part of me) and could probably take on more roles like that in the future. (Side Note: I really was a little pissed of at people getting mad at Gigi Hadid for wearing a hijab for a magazine cover. Especially when she is made up of half a Middle Eastern race and religion. Her freaking last name is Hadid! How do you get accused of appropriating something that makes up half of you?)

Cons:

I’m pretty much tied to doing more modern day plays, Shakespeare and modern timelines in film or television. Anything that is period sensitive tends to lean towards someone who looks like the race they are (ex. Caucasian or African American.) 

Speaking of African Americans in film or television; I am often passed over for parts because I’m not “Black” enough. Which is funny, because to a bigoted White person, I have been called the “N-word” so uh, I’m plenty Black enough for them. 😒

There are Latinx roles available. But due to the fact that there are plenty of Latinx actors and actresses available, I won’t take those roles.  Because that would be cultural appropriation. So I pass over those roles quite often.

So there it is, the story of my career in a nutshell. One of these days I hope to do more work that incorporates more ethnically ambiguous people like myself…when they become available. But I’m not holding my breath.

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