Do mixed race adolescents behave badly?
There are some bad adolescent behaviors that whites do more than blacks (like drinking and smoking), and there are other bad adolescent behaviors that blacks do more than whites (watching TV, fighting, getting sexually transmitted diseases). Mixed-race kids manage to be as bad as whites on the white behaviors and as bad as blacks on the black behaviors. Mixed-race kids act out in almost every way …
Steven D. Levitt, "The Plight of Mixed Race Adolescents" Freakonomics blog post
I have no idea why, when making reference to mixed-race individuals we think black and white. First of all, this study ended up being about black/white biracial children completely ignoring children of Latino-Black, Black-Asian, and other interracial pairings.
That aside, adolescence is the time during which most people have pressure of identity. The above is based on assumption that black adolescents stick to black norms; white adolescents stick to white norms; mixed race on the other hand have a choice. They can chose to adopt black or white norms. And when it comes to trying to fit in with their peers, they end up choosing riskier behaviors from both groups so as to gain acceptance.
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Are mixed-race adolescents forced to engage in more risky behaviors just to fit in? Do you think the above assumption applies for other mixed-race adolescents (besides black/white)?
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