People always question why I wouldn’t date outside of my race. Usually, I prefer not to discuss a subject that I have already made up my mind on. Hell, sometimes I wonder if people say they would just to be politically correct.
Every day we’re inundated by relationship books, magazines, blogs and casual conversations all devoted to black women and the struggles they face while dating. Despite this topic being discussed ad nauseum, we often forget dating has a lot to do with personal preference and happiness, which doesn’t rely heavily on color boundaries; the choices made may be coincidental, not causal. This discussion of should I or should I not is as lively and fervent regarding black women as it is among black gay men.
From bearing the economical brunt of the household to disparaging statistics surrounding advanced education, the white-picket-fence image of a black man being content with dating inside his own race seems to be farfetched. So why should we force someone to date outside of his or her race? In theory, doing so should solve all of our problems; or, at the very least, give us more prospects – right? The more available prospects you have to choose from, the higher your chances are in finding “the right one.” However, often this strategy of casting a bigger net is the result of hopelessness and might yield the same results we had previously, just in a different flavor.
There’s nothing wrong with having preferences when it comes to dating. But whenever we decide to limit ourselves, then we have to deal with the consequences or realities. If you want to limit your preference, I don’t see the problem because you’re going to have to deal with those restraints when finding a partner. You are allowed to have unwavering standards and choices, but at the end of the day you must be aware that those standards will limit your dating pool. Those who limit their possible candidates to one race should not be shamed. If someone chooses not to date outside of their race does not mean they’re “racist,” they just don’t date outside of their race.
Even a few months ago, the Internet was abuzz with the release of Ralph Richard Banks’ new book, Is Marriage For White People?: How The African American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone. Before you begin to wonder, the author is black and his wife is too; talk about irony. After reading the advanced excerpts from the book, I easily predicted the amount of attention the book would garner. In the book, the Stanford University law professor examines the relationships of black women when it comes to interracial marriage. The author suggests black women would benefit both themselves and the black race if they decided to marry across racial lines. These are the same suggestions we peg in our own communities when it comes to interracial dating. Often we ask if marriage is for white people because that’s all we’re exposed to seeing with a happy ending. Even a quick Google search of ‘gay marriage’ would bring up a host of images, but none of those reflect an all black gay couple. For me, the ideal still exists.
Interracial dating will never become a lackluster topic because everyone constantly feels they should insert his or her opinion about your happiness. Regardless of polarized judgments, assertions and even sometimes pointless commentary, there is a huge market dedicated to sensationalizing the issues of marriage and race. Not to mention marriage itself is a huge cash cow, racking in millions and millions of dollars each year. Black women are a driving force behind the economy. In fact, it’s been reported that same-sex weddings could create hundreds of new jobs and pump millions of dollars back into our economy. With more people getting married, these unions could benefit everyone, not just those walking down the aisle. Don’t be stunned that the media has an effect on how we view race relations when it comes to dating. Because various forms of the media have been objectifying the traditional couple for so long, researchers have started to generate a body of literature documenting this phenomenal of interracial dating.
Let’s not forget that interracial relationships are nothing new. Given the historical relationships between blacks and the majority race, interracial couples have been around for many years—starting from behind massa’s closed doors. It’s difficult to paint all relationships with the same brush or color. There is no special technique when it comes to finding the perfect mate. The ultimate goal of a relationship is for the two people involved to be happy. Even though happiness might sound like a place in a far off interracial land, please don’t feel bad if you decide not to date outside your race.
I know I don’t.