Check the box: Black, White, Other?

Posted by Leticia, 25 Jul 06

Have you ever wondered why on virtually all applications/forms there is a box regarding race? We're told it's for statistical purposes to help provide adequate funding or some other such explanation. Does it make me a conspiracy theorist to believe that it's all to keep "us" separate and in our "places"? And dare I say that maybe we'll move closer to being "equal" when we stop allowing others to divide us?!

So, you've found the love of your life right here on our site. Everything is great. The families and friends get along and wedding bells are ringing. As the rhyme goes, "first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes (insert the little woman's name here), with a baby carriage. Baby arrives and you are faced with the first of perhaps many unsettling questions. No, not what to name your new bundle of joy. No, not who's going to be the god parents. You and the love of your life must fill out a form that will invertible ask what is the "race" of your child. What do you say? Here are some of the choices being offered on forms today:

    Your perfect partner could be online right now...

    What are you looking for?

  • Mixed
  • Mixed-race
  • Mulatto
  • Biracial
  • Interracial
  • Interethnic
  • Intergroup
  • Multicultural
  • Multiracial

There are many arguments why the "race" box is important and should remain on most government forms. In a dating site, like this it's necessary in identifying people who have a preference and are looking for someone of a "different" race. Other reasons given are for research in regards to health issues in a particular ethnic group, as well as being able to monitor profiling, employment, fair housing issues and discriminations.

Now even though I understand that argument, here's another point of view on the subject. First, we must understand that there are some companies and bodies of government that still have Negro as a box choice. So, it's pretty safe to assume that these forms will not have a choice for biracial or multiracial people to check. It's not fair to that individual to have to choose only one race to "belong" to. And somehow, "mixed" or "other" just doesn't cut it.

A few years ago in California there was an Initiative that banned the state from classifying people by race, ethnicity, color or national origin. It was called the "Racial Privacy Initiative". As you may or may not know, throughout American history, the federal and state governments have divided our "melting pot" into groups. Therefore making it easier to identify and some may say "target" racial and ethnic groups. Civil rights laws were enacted to help put an end to discrimination. As we continue to fight that battle, the box issue continues to be another fight that we fight. It makes perfect sense when it comes to regulating and controlling civil rights and making sure that everyone is treated equally and fairly. However, it's when it's used to separate and divide us by making us "choose sides" that many multiracial people take issue with.

Perhaps when we do become a nation of one, we will no longer look for ways to put each other in our proper place. Maybe we'll even look for other ways to identify ourselves, by name, social security number or DNA testing. I'm just looking forward to the form that says check which box applies:

  • Human
  • Alien
  • Other

Responses to "Check the box: Black, White, Other?"

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  1.   gms77 says:
    Posted: 07 Dec 06

    Check one box-the human race becasue we are all one race!

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  2.   JADE74 says:
    Posted: 24 Nov 06

    Where is the box to check for human.

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  3.   prime6969 says:
    Posted: 05 Nov 06

    The world is no longer just black or white and I love it, more mixing, more mixing. I hope that by 2040 it will be strange to find a 100% black or white person.

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  4.   Pleasjure13 says:
    Posted: 03 Nov 06

    One of these days hopefully humanity will excel beyond seeing the outer person. When I look at these profiles that state a particular race preference I see how far we have to go. I do enjoy seeing the ones that state " looking for all races or ethnicities. While I do not need to have a white woman in order to feel good about myself .A woman of a different culture is as stimulating as any other.

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  5. Posted: 31 Oct 06

    Its all people, regardless of color!

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  6.   Coco says:
    Posted: 28 Oct 06

    My daughter is bi-racial but considers herself a young black woman. She always told me that she knows who she is but the world will see her as a light skinned black person. I want her to continue to be proud of both of her heritages, and she said she doesn't have to claim to be what she isn't. I am proud of her for knowing exactly who she is and for always being her unique self!

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  7.   aantonio says:
    Posted: 17 Oct 06

    As i truly believe, we are a human races. The only race. We all bleed red. There is NO reason for companies to ask whether we are black, white asian, etc. yes we are a;; different, but bottom line is we are all human

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  8.   Natural72 says:
    Posted: 14 Oct 06

    Most people are mixed with something. How I answer that question really depends on my mood. Like most people, I usually leave it blank, put human (hee hee)or mixed. When I put African American, to me that already denotes that I come from mixed heritage.

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  9.   Texasbest says:
    Posted: 05 Oct 06

    I just leave that question blank.

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  10.   fala says:
    Posted: 25 Sep 06

    I'm mixed and I usually put other just to keep them guessing.

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  11.   EMBRACEME says:
    Posted: 18 Sep 06

    THIS ONE I UNDERSTAND SO WELL HAVING MIXED KIDS AND HAVING THEM ASKD ME MOM WHAT DO I PUT DOWN ... I GOT SO MAD ONE DAY AND I LOOKED A LADY IN THE FACE AND TOLD HER THINGS LIKE THIS IS WHAT KEEPS US DIVIDED ... I TOOK THE PAPER AND CIRCLED WHITE AND JOIN A LINE TO BLACK AND CIRCLED IT AND I SAID NOW UNDERSTAND THIS CHILDREN NO MATTER WHAT PAPER IT IS YOU DO THIS .. IF THEY DONT ACCEPT IT THEN TELL THEM TO GET IT RIGHT REPRINT A PAPER WITH MIXED ON IT LOL... I BELIEVE THAT AS LONG AS PEOPLE DIVIDE RACE ON PAPER WE WILL ALWAYS HAVE PROBLEMS .. THERE SHOULD BE NO RACE ON ANY TYPE OF PAPER WE ARE ALL HUMAN IN THE EYES OF GOD.. BUT THAT IS THE GOVERMENT FOR YOU..

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  12.   romeoluvs says:
    Posted: 12 Sep 06

    sometimes it does helps ticking the right column and prescribing race but sometimes its mere used for racist purpose.

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  13.   JADE74 says:
    Posted: 11 Sep 06

    Good question and comments by all.

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  14.   xina03 says:
    Posted: 11 Sep 06

    Since i was little my mother talked to us(me and my sisters) about race and she told us that it doesn't matter if someone is yellow, black or white we are all the same.

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  15.   Marquez097 says:
    Posted: 07 Sep 06

    Sometimes I think the race part of an application is simply to identify who is to get something over someone else. I could be wrong on this but thats what I saw when I worked with human resources.

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  16.   sweetest1 says:
    Posted: 03 Sep 06

    I agree with Mari... my daughter is 'mixed' but I teach her to consider herself 'black' (she says brown people--lol) and love her culture because that is what people see her as. No matter how hard I try to explain to her and keep her eyes open she is brainwashed by the media, people in school, and even innuendos within our family (both sides) We go to church and school, and the children call her white because they only see me with her. Most of her cousins and friends are black, but yet in her 5 years of life doesn't identify with that culture. I have explained her culture to her on so many different occassions and I pray and hope that she will one day understand, but right now she is very confused and has a lot of issues from her culture, she has even said she hated 'brown' people. Everyone has some mixture in their blood... but by no means is it easy or even acceptable to just 'check a box' to describe who we are!!!

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  17.   xina03 says:
    Posted: 02 Sep 06

    It's all ignorance when you judge someone because of the color of their skin....

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  18.   Mikey7777 says:
    Posted: 30 Aug 06

    we are all created in the image of God

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  19.   RH says:
    Posted: 25 Aug 06

    Personally I never see color...and I don't think color should be an issue.

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  20.   TrueHarmony says:
    Posted: 25 Aug 06

    This has GOT to be one of the best topics yet. I am a product of interracial mixing and I strive to embrace all of my cultures. To check a box and state that you only identify with one race simply means that you other heritage doesn't matter. I have a question. Since my mother is black and my father is bi-racial (Blackfoot Indian, White, Creole & African), what does that make me?

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  21.   Ashley says:
    Posted: 25 Aug 06

    It used to worry me when I had to tick my racial origin, but now Im glad companies ask that question. I don't want to waste my money and time visiting a company, for a job interview, that doesn't want to employ blacks. There is however, something else that worries me. Why is it on some application forms there is one box for 'whites', but when it comes to 'blacks and Asians' there's a multitude of different categories. Whats that about?

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  22.   JENN says:
    Posted: 25 Aug 06

    THEY SAY BEAUTY IS IN THE EYE OF THE BEHOLDER... SO WHY ARE OUR HEARTS AND OUR MINDS AND OUR WAY OF LIFE "STATISTICALLY" DEFINED BY OUR VARIED RACES.........

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  23.   maria says:
    Posted: 24 Aug 06

    I enjoy reading everyone single comment and they are all very useful so keep it up. oneday i might have something to write too.

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  24.   bunny27 says:
    Posted: 24 Aug 06

    race does not matter...only personality

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  25.   Tempeman says:
    Posted: 24 Aug 06

    It's all about what you as a person prefer. If that makes you racist, so be it. I am like Archie Bunker myself, I hat everyone equally..;)

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  26.   jimmirix says:
    Posted: 24 Aug 06

    I am colourblind

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  27.   eve says:
    Posted: 24 Aug 06

    I think colour is in the heart and it should not be from the out look or maybe what you see.I am black thoughI love white men for but that does not mean i hate black men.Its what is inside your hear that matters most.People should stop recicim and see everyone not by what ever colour one has but what is in the skin deep"HEART"

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  28.   WoodTurner says:
    Posted: 23 Aug 06

    When I read these comments, I am glad to be living in Canada. Here it is illegal to ask the race question in many instances. For instance a person's race can't be a question on an application form. There are many other instances. In fact about a year ago our police force was castigated for using racial profiling in fighting crime.

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  29.   Bernnie says:
    Posted: 19 Aug 06

    I'M CAUSCASIAN (WHITE-ON-WHITE) BUT PREFER TO ASSOCIATE AND MINGLE WITH PEOPLE OF ALL COLORS AND NATIONALITIES. THE ONLY PREJUDICE I HAVE IS FOR UNJUST, UNFAIR, HATERS! I AM ESPECIALLY ATTRACTED TO BLACK, AFRO-AMERICAN WOMEN BECAUSE THEY ARE THE ONES THAT HAVE BEFRIENDED ME THE MOST OFTEN. I AM ALSO ATTRACTED TO THEIR ABLILITY TO SEEMINGLY ACCEPT ME FOR WHO I AM AND NOT WHAT THEY WANT ME TO BE. LASTLY, BUT NOT LEAST, I'M ATTRACTED TO MOST BLACK WOMEN'S PHYSICAL ATTRIBUTES...THEY ARE HOT!

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  30.   Samuel says:
    Posted: 18 Aug 06

    I don't see people as color. I don't care, but i will be happy if see pretty woman.

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  31.   Tommygirl1 says:
    Posted: 14 Aug 06

    I don't judge any person by the color of theIR skin only by theIR actions. For God only made 1 man and woman and change the races at babylon. We're all family.

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  32.   SOUTH26GIRL says:
    Posted: 14 Aug 06

    WELL I SEE IT LIKE THIS I DON'T LOOK AT COLOR WHEN GOD MADE US HE MADE EVERY BODY THE WAY HE WANTED THEM TO BE WHEN I BLEED WHEN YOU BLEED WE ALL BLEED THE SAME BLOOD THE ONLY THING THATS DIFFRENT WE DON'T HAVE THE SAME SKIN COLOR BUT OTHER THEN THAT WE ARE THE SAME WITH DIFFRENT LOOKS,SHAPE AND SIZES THINK YOU SOUTH26GIRL

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  33.   denise says:
    Posted: 10 Aug 06

    Unfortunately our society is very interested in race. I am of mixed race but was raised in the black community. I do not look completely white nor black. I indentify with the black race therefore I view myself as a black women.

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  34.   maxncagnie says:
    Posted: 08 Aug 06

    I don't see people as color. If that man that I'm in love with is white then so be it. He is the one that has made me happy. He's the one that has filled the hole in my heart. God made all us just as he died for all us. Thank You Maxncagnie

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  35.   Luther says:
    Posted: 07 Aug 06

    Actually, I feel that race is very insignificant. A person's best qualities do not outline who they are ethnically. Truthfully, who has any control over that?

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  36.   Mari says:
    Posted: 05 Aug 06

    It sounds all nice and sweet "we are all people," but in reality this is not the case. The white race needs the boxes, so they can keep track of how many white folks there are. Whites only make of 10% of the world population. They are afraid of becoming exstinct. They are mad because they are albino mutations. (Always trying to get a sun tan...now they want fat lips) This is the reason they cause so much war and hatered in the world. They reason they hate and despise blacks (Africans) so much because Africa is the richest contintent in the world with all the resources. They want it all the diamonds, gold, oil, music, black studs and black tigeress in bed. They steal everything from black folks. This has been going on for 2000 years. As for race mixing this is nothing new. Everywhere the white enslaver, colonizer, oppressor, thief went he raped and murdered blacks, red, yellow people, so it's no big deal if he now wants to offically date black women, so what. Where do you think all these light skinned blacks folks came from. Master slipping out to the slave cabin and rapping black women. As for you brothas and sistahs dating white folks and other races it's okay...but it aint no big deal. Cause guess what they ain't goin' to give you the riches their slaveholding ancestors beat, murdered and killed your African ancestor for free labor which created all that free wealth. Stolen native american land. Now their children want to say "I didn't own any slaves blah blah. Denial, denial. Racism is all american like apple pie, and you know it's not going anywhere it suppports and maintains the system. So Box or no box it doesn't make a difference to me. Whites have the wealth and too blacks are happy being slaves. Oh as for the person who talked about Jamacia being a melting pot that's a lie because they have a fierce color caste system down there just like in the US and everywhere. It's alot of internal racism down there with the blacks...light skin vs dark skin etc. Interacial dating is not going to change the economic power structure of this country. I think blacks, African Americans, Negroes, colored or whatever you like to be refer to need to love themselves before they can even think about loving another race. Most blacks who date outside of their race don't even like other blacks folks. How are you going to love another race when you hate yourself. For all you liberal white folks do me a favor and educate yo people about not being racist, and pay me my repriations. Okay Then maybe we can be friends and date, but until then see yah! BOX...give me my money. "give me the bible, but you take the land" I love topics like this cause it shows you how ignorant white, blacks, and the other races are about America. Also, they use the box to create more white people. Because most of the biracial children want to identify with the white race. They're going to be brainwashed to hate their blackness through the media, educational system etc., so maybe it does serve some good purpose. To futher divide and conquer. I pray for all the brainwashed peoples out there. Peace. May the Nubian Goddess Enlighten your minds.

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  37.   QUEQU says:
    Posted: 05 Aug 06

    This i believe came about as a result of the mentallity of the earlier people who had not seen the capabilities of other races.In Gods own wisdom is diversity! no race is superior or will ever be superior so long as there is diversity in creation! People should begin to understand that of all creation, it is only MAN that discriminates.... What a shame to see dogs, cats ,birds and all others living in harmony. Its a high time portions regarding race are left off on forms.this will help us to demistify THIS scar in our minds...Continue to beautify the world with COLOURS as nature is beautiful when there is diversty. UP ALL PEOPLE

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  38.   XJ8dave says:
    Posted: 05 Aug 06

    I'm White and have complained to the Commission for Racial Equality about these boxes which I find offensive. Something I find even more offensive is that my black wife, who suffers a personality problem and I have cared for for six years suddenly decides our daughter, who has fairer skin than I, has with the assistance of Social Services run off with my daughter to live amoung prostitutes and drug dealers in the St Annes/Mapperly park area of Nottingham. Citing that our daughter is black and therefore must live in poverty and never have material possesions. I know my wife isn't responsible for her actions but Social Services should be accountable. They just wanted my wife out of their area as she had caused them problems. Have you not ever seen children of all colour at nursery playing happy together without noticing colour. It is adults who introduce racism and government forms and departments are the main offenders

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  39.   Beija says:
    Posted: 05 Aug 06

    I have as many as five ethnic backgrounds in me and I own them all. I refuse to perpetuate racism on any level. I like to call my self a beautiful blend especially when people want to dump me into a Heinz 57 category. So, Yes I embrace all of my ethnicities and yet my culture is African American because there is no denying the soulful culture that I recieved. Thank you for listening. Be well and free from separatist thinking. Shine your light and challenge racism every time you can.. Aloha

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  40.   puma4you says:
    Posted: 05 Aug 06

    all these questions about interracial problems is a matter of time. human race has the same DNA, even we have different skin color. We all had been Aliens before we landed here on this planet to stay and to grow our own civilisations.Now with globalisation we all are coming closer...and you will all learn to understand, that in another hundred-thousand years, a pure race is not existing anymore here.....we all would be mixed..and only the name of the family would be the last witness, from where we are originally......

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  41.   Theresa says:
    Posted: 03 Aug 06

    Hello, I've actually been waiting to express my feelings on this topic. All that I want to say right now is that I don't agree with all of the choosing which race you are, checking the boxes! It's all nonsense to me. And if you ask me, I'd rather say I'm an Ebony female, instead of African American! Ya know, I actually had the chance to meet an African American while I was cab driving and he looked nothing like me, skin color-wise! He was a lot lighter. I had to laugh to myself, thinking, wow, and they (America) call me African American. I hate when forms ask what race my daughter is also! To me, she's Jamaican, Irish, Scottish, German, and Native American. And very beautiful at that. I just hate the whole categorizing thing! Thanks for having topics like this up for discussion. It's always been something that gets under my skin, no pun intended! lol People are people, let's just finally get that through our heads!!!

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  42.   Jamie says:
    Posted: 02 Aug 06

    I work and go to Kentucky State University and I don't see color. People are people, most of the time I'm the only white person in a room. That doesn't affect me, but when I have to check on an application what race I am, it stays blank! If they are interested then they will call me, you don't need to make that choice by what I checked in a square box.

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  43.   Jorgen says:
    Posted: 01 Aug 06

    As long we talking of humans the race dont matter

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  44.   Dorlizz says:
    Posted: 01 Aug 06

    The point here is to first accept the way God made you.2ndly,Respect the other person's nature. BCoz for sure,if you cut the bodies of a black and a white man,tell me WHAT RACE the COLOUR OF THEIR BLOOD will be........?

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  45.   Henman says:
    Posted: 31 Jul 06

    NO COMMENTS GREAT COMMENTARIES. KEEP IT UP . I AM IN AGREEMENT

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  46. Posted: 31 Jul 06

    I LOVE THE SHEER JOY OF BEING WITH A CAUCASIAN WOMAN BECAUSE SHE MAKES ME FEEL MORE ALIVE THAN I'VE EVER FELT AND THE CONTRAST BETWEEN US IS SUCH AN IRRESISTABLE ATTRACTION THAT I CAN'T DENY! ITS JUST FEELS SO NATURAL TO ME!

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  47. Posted: 31 Jul 06

    i agree shirley patterson seems to be in denial. it is wrong to deny her half of her daughters ancestry because of how she 'looks'. maybe her skin will darken with age then will she be black to u? its wrong to say ur daughter is white when half of her is black. she is of mixed race and even though it shouldnt matter people will always make it matter and there is no denying that she has no african american ancestry in her.

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  48.   abs says:
    Posted: 30 Jul 06

    in response to Shirley Patterson posted 28th July. shirley your answer is not that simple, your child is of mixed race. he/she is not just white or black he/she has a race of her/his own, he/she is simply of mixed race, I get very upset when I hear this sort of thing from mixed race relationships, that their child is black, no ! he/she is not, she's white ! well its simple he/she is neither !!! he/she is of mixed race. plain and simple.

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  49.   angel says:
    Posted: 29 Jul 06

    to a comment made by Ms. patterson about her daughter looking more white so she thinks of her as being white, is just the problem dicussed in the article above and many more. Too many people look at outward appearance and slap on labels, instead of telling your daughter to embrace both sides, you set her up to have identity issues. Aren't you proud of your heritage? Would you want her just to say oh I look white mom so whatever my ancestors were is unimportant. With keeping all that in mind I never understood the selection for checking that box, I know in some ways they say they want a diverse enviroment etc,But it is box that should be eliminated either way most jobs you have to go in for an interview, and either way they will make their decision then. For the most part most of us arent color blind and will always have some sort of preconceived notion either verbally expressed or thought, the best thing is to suck it up realize that the whole world is a mixed up pot and no one is just one race , especially since everyone come from africa in the first place-if you know your dna and history. So as hard as that is for many of us to comprehend -its your choice in the end if you dont mind checking the box and feel the job your applying for is looking for diversity then check it, if you dont and your unsure dont check it-choose other.

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  50.   suz says:
    Posted: 29 Jul 06

    I deleted my profile with friendfinder.com because for some reason they always only gave Me matches of black people and those in my own city even when I had indicated in my profile about what type of people I want and from where. I asked them about it and they have not responded, so I made my own conclusions. I am black lady and I can't handle Racism. I HATE IT WITH EVERYTHING WITHIN ME.

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