If you were to look at my kids you would see two little white boys, one with a nice little olive hue. However when they were younger we were fortunate enough to live in a very diverse area. There really were no racial lines because it was such a mix of kids and families from around the world. We never talked about race or skin color, and they really didn’t even realize that their dad had a darker complexion. I loved it. I thought it was so amazing to see all of these kids just being kids with no regard to labeling “what” they were.
Then we moved.
It wasn’t as diverse but there was a smattering of people from different backgrounds. One day my oldest son came home from kindergarten and started talking about the holiday of the day. It happened to be Martin Luther King Jr. day. All of a sudden he was talking about white people and black people, and my heart was sinking. Up until that point he hadn’t realized there were “different kinds” of people, he just saw people.
Don’t get me wrong I think it’s important for kids to learn about the history of our country and the important figures. This experience just made me wonder if there is a better way of doing it. I loved that my kids were exposed to so many different people without pre-constructed ideas of who they were based on their appearance. I hope that they can hold onto those tiny bits of childhood memories before they saw skin color first.
I’d love to know how you strive towards erasing color lines in your children’s eyes, or if you’re on the other side of my argument. Do you think it’s possible to raise color-blind kids?