Exploring the history and experiences of mixed heritage persons and inter-racial relationships across the world
I wouldn’t be human if I did not stop and doubt my motivations once in a while. When you gamble your money and time on a project as large as this, it is especially worthwhile in the early days when you have a chance to cut your losses and run. Despite the slow start, I thought I would share my thoughts on why I think MIDS is a worthwhile project.
There is no question that in the world – Europe and North America in particular, but in far flung once homogenous countries like China, Japan and Korea of a growing awareness of the increased presence of inter-cultural partnerships and marriages and the resultant increase of multicultural offspring. Multiculturalism brought about by immigration and the global worldwide trade and commerce is, with liberal education, responsible for the eroding of racial, regional, national and tribal stereotypes and cultural snobbery that prevented admixture in the past.
In the USA, in 2006, some 6 million people self-identified as being of mixed heritage and recent news in the UK highlighted a study estimating that some 20% of the UK population will be from ethnic groups with ‘mixed race’ people overtaking the Indian population as the largest minority group by 2020 and making up some 4% of the UK population in 2051. It would be amazing if this same pattern is not being followed in other parts of Western Europe.
Even at such a small percentage of population, society is already recognising this trend. A considerable number of books, websites and articles are related to the phenomenon with over 50 groups and fan pages on Facebook alone, fuelled by the over-representation of self-identifying mixed heritage figures in public life such as President Obama, Tiger Woods and numerous singers, actors and actresses. Multi and Intra-cultural (covering heritage, race, religion etc) issues are alos being recognised by Governments with data collection such as Censuses reflecting this rapidly growing section of society.
This growing awareness does also bring out those who oppose this trend continuing , those who bring biases such as the ‘one drop’ rule , the ‘evils of miscegenation’, religious and traditional reasons against multiculturalism and immigration and for segregation and divisiveness. In places where there have been distinct separate mixed communities there has been push to assimilation and extinction, a sort of reversal of the one drop rule. In some long lived communities there has been a tendency to be too inward looking thus contributing to their eventual extinction.
Just like how the ‘Black History Month’ movement in developed countries has been used to counter racism and to educate black people, people of mixed heritage and their parents must answer the ignorance of all who question their raison d’être (reason for existence) with education and knowledge – by pointing to history not only within their own counties but those of other countries. That is what MIDS aims to help them to do.
Will it make me a millionaire? Unlikely. Will it make me a living? I sincerely hope so.