News Stories

Passing for Black

You've heard of black people "passing for white," but times have changed: Now many mixed-race people with a choice of which way to go are identifying themselves as black. But before they do this, maybe they should think twice: Drug use is usually associated with blacks and latinos, but nearly one in five whites could carry a genetic variant that substantially increases their odds of being susceptible to severe cocaine abuse.

Black-white biracial adults now exercise considerable control over how they identify and researchers find “a striking reverse pattern of passing today, with a majority of survey respondents reporting that they pass as black. Today’s passing is about adopting an identity that contradicts your self-perception of race. Sociologist Nikki Khanna says, "Most people in my sample identified themselves as biracial or multiracial but talked about certain situations, with a group of friends, say, where they might downplay their white ancestry, which can carry its own negative biases." Other reasons cited for passing as black included a desire to take advantage of post-Civil Rights era educational and employment opportunities sometimes available to those who are black.

And the drug gene? Among whites, the cocaine mutation were found in more than 40% of autopsy brain samples taken from people who had abused cocaine, compared to 19% of samples from people who lived drug-free.

You may have a choice about whether to live as black or white, but if you've gained too much weight, your path is clear: You're perceived as a fat person. Is there anything you can do about this? If you've given up trying to lose weight, you need to download Anne Strieber's famous diet book, "What I Learned From the Fat Years." Using scientific principles, she devised a diet that helped her to lose 100 pounds and YOU CAN TOO, so whether you're "black" or "white," BE SLIM! (NOTE: Subscribers can still listen to this show).



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