Famous Friday

Ryan Gosling

This week’s Famous Friday features interracial power couple – Eva Mendes and Ryan Gosling. According to US Magazine, The dynamic duo quietly tied the knot in early 2016 after being together for over 5 years. They have two beautiful multiracial daughters, Esmerelda and Amada.

Eva Mendes was born in Miami, Florida, and she is of Cuban-American descent. She is a singer, actress, model, and designer. You have probably watched her in major films like Hitch, Training day, and Stuck on You. She has also been the face of several advertisement campaigns for huge companies including: Revlon, Cartier, and Calvin Klein.

Ryan Gosling is of English, French Canadian, and Scottish descent. He is an actor most famously known for his role as Noah in The Notebook. You may also recognize him from his role in La La Land, Crazy Stupid Love, or my personal favorite Remember The Titans. Over the course of his career he has racked up multiple Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations.

One time when asked about his family Ryan said, “It’s heaven, it’s like walking through a field of flowers everyday – I live with angels.” I love that we are beginning to see more and more interracial power couples in Hollywood. I also love that I am seeing more interracial couples on sitcoms and commercials. It is awesome, especially considering that not even 100 years ago interracial marriage was illegal. Remember to take time to celebrate interracial couples and multiracial people everyday, and especially during Multiracial Heritage Week which is coming up soon.

Photo courtesy of US Weekly

LOVING MOVIE Opens in Select Theaters Friday


We are excited about this film and hope that those in the vicinity of the theaters that will screen the film this Friday will show their support by showing up!!



From acclaimed writer/director Jeff Nichols, Loving celebrates the real-life courage and commitment of an interracial couple, Richard and Mildred Loving (Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga), who married and then spent the next nine years fighting for the right to live as a family in their hometown. Their civil rights case, Loving v. Virginia, went all the way to the Supreme Court, which in 1967 reaffirmed the very foundation of the right to marry – and their love story has become an inspiration to couples ever since.

To see some of the excellent reviews, photos, trailers and more, follow the link below:



Interracial Marriage

Multiracial Marriage on the Rise

One consequence of America’s diversity explosion is a rise in multiracial marriages. In 1960, before immigration levels to the United States started to rise, multiracial marriages constituted only 0.4 percent of all U.S. marriages. That figure increased to 8.4 percent in 2010 and for recent newlyweds, 15 percent.

Not surprisingly the prevalence of out-marriage is high for new minorities, Hispanics and Asians, in light of the large pool of potential partners who are of different origins. More than four in ten new marriages of each group marry someone of a different race—with whites the most likely partners.

Additionally, the vast majority of marriages involving American Indians are multiracial marriages. Many of these marriages involve spouses who identify as multiracial persons, signaling an extensive blurring that has already occurred among American Indian and white populations.

While multiracial marriages involving blacks are the least likely among major racial groups, the recent rise in such marriages is significant, as black-white marriages were prohibited in 16 states until 1967. The fact that nearly three in 10 new black marriages are multiracial with most of them to white spouses reflects an important shift toward blurring a long-held color line in the United States.

Material adapted from Diversity Explosion: How Racial Demographics Are Remaking America by William H. Frey, 2014.

Multiracial Marriages

Oldest Interracial Newlyweds

Edith Hill, Eddie Harrison marriage questioned; elderly newlyweds could face legal problems

September 9, 2014 by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

This photo taken Aug. 5, 2014 shows 96-year-old

(AP) — In some ways, Rebecca Wright doesn’t understand all the fuss over her 96-year-old mother’s recent marriage. After all, she says, “Anybody who wants to get married must have a little dementia.”

The courts, though, and some of Wright’s other relatives aren’t amused. And the future for newlyweds Edith Hill, 96, and Eddie Harrison, 95, is very much uncertain.

The two have been companions for more than a decade after a Hollywood-style meet-cute — they struck up a conversation while standing in line for lottery tickets, with one of the tickets turning into a $2,500 winner. They married earlier this year, with a 95-year-old church elder presiding over the ceremony, no less.

“I guess I wanted company,” Hill said in an interview, explaining why she married. “I wanted somebody I could help, and they could help me. … We were both single. My husband was gone. His wife was gone. We became the best of friends.”

Robin Wright, Hill’s granddaughter, said the relationship is more romantic than Hill’s explanation allows.

“You catch them kissing all the time,” she said. “They’re actually in love. Really in love. … I know he’s part of the reason she gets up every morning.”

Legally, though, the wedding has been problematic. Hill has been declared legally incapacitated for several years. A judge said at a hearing earlier this month that he believes Wright — co-guardian over her mother along with a sister who opposed the marriage — acted improperly by taking her mother to get married without the court’s permission.

Cary Cuccinelli, representing the sister who opposed the marriage, Patricia Barber, said at a hearing earlier this month that the wedding occurred without other family members’ knowledge, and that it complicated the matter of how to eventually distribute Hill’s estate, which includes property on the edge of Old Town Alexandria, worth about $475,000, according to real estate assessments.

“Legally, Mr. Harrison now has a right to a portion of Ms. Hill’s estate,” she told the judge, saying it also complicates decisions over who will care for Hill, and where she will live.

While the judge, James Clark, found the marriage to have been improper, he also worried that breaking up the couple could “create a circumstance in Ms. Hill’s life that she doesn’t deserve.”

Clark ended up removing Wright and Barber as Hill’s guardians, and appointing a lawyer, Jessica Niesen, instead. The judge instructed Niesen “to investigate the marriage and take all actions appropriate and reasonable to protect the best interests of Edith Hill.”

Niesen, in a phone interview, said she is still gathering facts and has an upcoming appointment to meet Hill and Harrison. While there are numerous issues to be sorted out, including questions about inheritance and where the couple will live, she would just as soon let the marriage continue.

“I see no reason to break this couple up, if there is no harm,” she said. One solution might be a postnuptial agreement preventing Harrison from inheriting Hill’s estate.

Niesen said that if she finds that the marriage is not in Hill’s best interest, she has the authority to pursue a divorce or possibly an annulment on Hill’s behalf.

Wright said she remained concerned authorities would try to break up the marriage. She also opposes a postnuptial agreement, saying the marriage should be respected just as any other.

The interracial aspect of their marriage is unique as well. She is black and he is white. In fact, the longtime Virginians would not have been allowed to marry if they had met in their 20s or 30s or 40s, given Virginia’s law banning interracial marriages at the time.

Wright says she has concluded after doing some research through Guinness Book of World Records that the two are likely the nation’s oldest interracial newlyweds.

Edith Hill, for her part, doesn’t give the interracial aspect of her marriage too much thought, despite the fact that for half of her life it would have been illegal.

Asked about the old laws barring interracial marriage, she said, “That’s done away with, isn’t it?”

For now, the two live together in Annandale, with Rebecca and Robin Wright helping care for them. Rebecca Wright said the two do a good job taking care of each other — his hearing is not great, and her vision is not great. They dance, listen to music and take walks, which has improved their health.

And Rebecca Wright said the companionship two people of the same age provide each other can’t be underestimated.

“They can talk about things that nobody else knows about,” she said.

Eddie Harrison said he and Hill never fight, and they both understood what getting married would mean.

“The first time I married I didn’t know what I was doing,” he said. “I was 18. She was 26. Two weeks later I wanted a divorce.”

Americans in 2050

National Geographic Concludes What Americans Will Look Like in 2050, and It’s Beautiful

It’s no secret that interracial relationships are trending upward, and in a matter of years we’ll have Tindered, OKCupid-ed and otherwise sexed ourselves into one giant amalgamated mega-race.

But what will we look like? National Geographic built its 125th anniversary issue around this very question last October, commissioning Martin Schoeller, a renowned photographer and portrait artist, to capture the lovely faces of our nation’s multiracial future.

Here’s how the “average American” will look by the year 2050:

Image Credit: National Geographic

And like this:

Image Credit: National Geographic

And this:

Image Credit: National Geographic

Wow. These are obviously not Photoshopped projections, but real people, meaning tomorrow’s America lives among us now in every “Blackanese,” “Filatino,” “Chicanese” and “Korgentinian” you meet at the DMV, grocery store or wherever it is you hang out.

Their numbers will only grow. The U.S. Census Bureau let respondents check more than one race for the first time in 2000, and 6.8 million people did so. By 2010 that figure had increased to nearly 9 million, a spike of about 32%.

This is certainly encouraging, but there are obvious flaws with tracking racial population growth through a survey that lets people self-identify, especially since so many familial, cultural and even geographical factors influence your decision to claim one or multiple races. Complicating things further is the definition of race itself: It has no basis in biology, yet its constructions, functions and mythologies irrevocably shape the world as we know it.

So is an end approaching? Will increased racial mixing finally and permanently redefine how we imagine our racial identities? The latest figures suggest we’re getting more comfortable with the idea, or perhaps that we simply give fewer shits than ever before. Either would be a step in the right direction.

The Wall Street Journal reported a few years back that 15% of new marriages in 2010 were between individuals of different races. It’s unclear whether they’ve included same-sex unions in the count, but as currently stated, this number is more than double what it was 25 years ago. The proportion of intermarriages also varied by race, with “9% of whites, 17% of blacks, 26% of Hispanics and 28% of Asians [marrying] outside their ethnic or racial group.” Interracial unions now account for 8.4% of all marriages in the U.S.

Image Credit: Wall Street Journal

In addition, more than 7% of the 3.5 million children born in 2009, the year before the 2010 census, were of two or more races.

The future: As for how this looks moving forward, studies have repeatedly shown that young people, especially those under 30, are significantly more amenable to interracial relationships than older adults, while college grads are more likely to have positive attitudes toward them than those with only a high school diploma. What does this mean for Millennials? As a population composed largely of over-educated 20-somethings, our generation is primed and expected to play a major role in populating this projected future America. That goes double if you live in a Western state, where people intermarry at higher rates; Hawaii is winning at the moment, with 4 of 10 new marriages identifying as interracial.

This doesn’t mean it’s all sunshine, rainbows and butterflies, however. Stark segregation still plagues many parts of the country. Poverty remains a barrier to social mobility and its consequent opportunities to interact with a diverse range of people. Sadly, the inequalities that shape American society as a whole are equally present in interracial relationship patterns. Time will tell if this holds for the long term.

But in the meantime, let us applaud these growing rates of intermixing for what they are: An encouraging symbol of a rapidly changing America. 2050 remains decades away, but if these images are any preview, it’s definitely a year worth waiting for.

Source: National Geographic


Multiracial Family Traditions

I recently was asked to write an essay about my favorite family tradition. My family has lots of traditions. We have Christmas traditions, New Years Eve traditions, Super Bowl traditions and NCAA tourney traditions, but my favorite tradition is how we celebrate Loving Day! You may know that Loving Day is celebrated in June, but since I wrote the essay now, I thought it would be nice to share it with our Project RACE members and everyone who reads our blog.

So, here it is…                                          Karson


I smell Chinese food as soon as Dad and Didier walk in… barbecued spare ribs, dumplings, chicken, rice and noodles. This night is my favorite family tradition. Our two families, the Baldwins and the Mukendis, or the Mu-baldis, as we nicknamed ourselves, have a great time every year. We eat Chinese food and play spoons. Our spoons game always becomes very intense. We’ve even left permanent scratches and dents in the dining room table. But the food and fun and games aren’t the most important thing about this night.


We are celebrating Loving Day. Have you heard of it? It’s a holiday that celebrates two people that made it legal for the Mukendis and Baldwins to even exist. In 1958 Mildred Jeter and Richard Loving lived in Virginia where interracial marriage was illegal. They went to Washington, DC where a Black woman and White man like them could get married and went back home. But the laws also stated that the couple could not live together in Virginia even if their wedding was in another state. One night they were arrested for being married. Isn’t that crazy? The judge gave them the choice to go to jail or leave Virginia. They choose to move to Washington, DC. But they missed their family and home. So Mildred wrote a letter to Robert Kennedy. He helped them get lawyers and their case went all the way to the United States Supreme Court. In 1967 the court unanimously decided in the Loving’s favor, finally making it legal in all states for people to marry whoever they wanted no matter their race.


In 1967 my parents and Wendy and Didier Mukendi were all little kids and had no idea how important that day would be for their lives or mine. My Dad is Black and grew up in Texas. My Mom is White and grew up in Ohio. Wendy is White and from California. Didier is Black and from the Republic of the Congo in Africa. Those are very different backgrounds, but each couple met and fell in love and was able to legally marry in 1989. Our families have been friends all my life. We’re so close that our two families are like one big family. When Didier was between jobs, they moved in with us for a while. When my sisters accidently burned down our house we lived with them until we found a new house. We have a lot more in common than being multiracial families. We go to church together and do all kinds of fun things. But on Loving Day being multiracial is what we celebrate and I love it.


I’m glad my parents had the freedom to marry the person they loved. I’m glad Wendy and Didier had the freedom to marry the person they loved. And I’m glad that while we’re celebrating the history of interracial families like ours, we have the freedom to eat the food we love, even though none of us are Chinese.

Racist Op-Ed Controversy

Racist Op-Ed Columns Are a Strange Business Strategy

I’m not sure what, if anything, Jeff Bezos will do to try to turn around the financial fortunes of the Washington Post. But Richard Cohen’s column today suggests one small step that the owner of the daily paper in a majority-black city could take—reconsider whether regularly publishing racist op-ed columns is a wise business strategy.

Here’s Cohen (emphasis added):

Today’s GOP is not racist, as Harry Belafonte alleged about the tea party, but it is deeply troubled — about the expansion of government, about immigration, about secularism, about the mainstreaming of what used to be the avant-garde. People with conventional views must repress a gag reflex when considering the mayor-elect of New York — a white man married to a black woman and with two biracial children. (Should I mention that Bill de Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray, used to be a lesbian?) This family represents the cultural changes that have enveloped parts — but not all — of America. To cultural conservatives, this doesn’t look like their country at all.

I’m sure there’s some market niche for columns denouncing miscegenation and race mixing, but is it really the Washington, DC market? That seems very questionable to me. Obviously eliminating Cohen-related expenditures would not, on its own, bring the Post to solvency. But every little bit helps.


Even among Americans over the age of 65, interracial marriage has a 70% approval rating.


Source: Matthew Yglesias is Slate‘s business and economics correspondent. He is the author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.



Civil Rights History and The Multiracial Advocacy

Initiative Promotes Civil Rights History With Free Documentaries

From guest blogger Alyssa Morones

A new initiative from the National Endowment for the Humanities will provide schools and communities with free access to documentaries that trace the history of the civil rights movement, from the first seeds of change that sprouted in the 1820s to the 1967 Supreme Court decision that overturned the ban on interracial marriage.

The website was launched this week, and comes in the wake of the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington.

In addition to selected clips from the documentaries, the initiative, called Created Equal, will feature an array of resources for communities to have their own film screenings and conduct reflective discussions, according to a press release from the NEH. The featured documentaries include The Abolitionists, Slavery by Another Name, The Loving Story, and Freedom Riders.

Funding for the Created Equal initiative comes through a cooperative agreement between the NEH and the Gilder Lehrman Institute. The NEH’s Division of Public Programs, and its Bridging Cultures and We the People initiatives funded this cooperative agreement.

Over the next three years, the initiative will provide funding to 473 communities to host public discussion programs centered around the films, according to the press release. Each recipient will receive a film set and $1,200 in programming grants. The programs will be held at public libraries, museums, NAACP chapters, African American heritage sites, and cultural centers across the nation. Events already planned by these venues include everything from film screenings to book discussions to theatrical productions to interviews with former activists.

The website will also supply background essays by civil rights scholars and lesson plans to help teachers meet college and career-ready Standards through guided classroom discussions and by giving students the background texts and materials necessary to assert and defend an argument.

Speaking of the civil rights movement, we noted in a recent blog post here that new social studies standards in Tennessee have won high marks from the Southern Poverty Law Center for their treatment of the issue.

Source: EducationWeek

Interracial marriage and NY Politics

Joe Lhota Polled Voters About Bill de Blasio’s Mixed-Race Marriage, Report Claims

BY Mara Gay

A bitter feud has erupted between Democrat Bill de Blasio and Republican Joe Lhota over reports that Lhota’s campaign might have polled voters about their feelings on mixed-race marriage.

de blasio mccray by santos.jpg

GOP consultant David Johnson was recently quoted in a Christian Science Monitor article saying internal Lhota campaign polls show voters are uncomfortable with a mixed-race marriage.

De Blasio is white and his wife, Chirlane McCray (pictured), is black.

Lhota’s team denied the report, insisting they didn’t even know Johnson.

The Rev. Al Sharpton on Thursday brought up the startling claims while interviewing de Blasio on his radio show.

“I know who Joe Lhota worked for,” de Blasio fumed. “He was the top deputy for Rudy Giuliani when he was dividing this city.”

De Blasio and McCray met when both worked in the administration of then-Mayor David Dinkins, who beat Giuliani in the 1989 election and then lost to him in a rematch four years later.

The current public advocate said the city has changed and won’t stand for divisive tactics: “I hope Joe Lhota doesn’t think he’s going to replay [Giuliani’s] playbook,” de Blasio said. “If he is, he’s in for a rude awakening.”

A Lhota spokeswoman, Jessica Proud, said the campaign would never ask voters about their feelings on mixed marriages: “It’s unfortunate that its becoming an issue,” Proud said. “We’ve never even heard of this guy before.”

Johnson told Politico he was misquoted and was only speculating. He said he has no knowledge of Lhota’s polling.

However, the Christian Science Monitor reporter told Politico he stood by the story.