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Can someone be transracial? Show more Show less
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With the outrage following Rachel Dolezal's falsified claims of being African American in 2015, the question of racial identity has been raised. Should we have the right to identify as a different race than the one assigned at birth? And is transracial identity legitimate, or another means of cultural appropriation?

Being transracial is a legitimate identity. Show more Show less

Just like being transgender, it is valid for someone to feel as though they identify more with a race different to the one assigned to them at birth.
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Transracial adoption

Before Rachel Dolezal used to term transracial to mean transitioning from one race to another, the word was most commonly associated with transracial adoption.
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The Argument

The word "transracialism" changed definitions after the scandal with Rachel Dolezal's new black identity. In reality, the term is associated with adopting children and raising them in a different country and society, so they learn those cultural customs instead of the ones they were born into.[1] This use of the term transracial is valid and reasonable. Transracially adopted children are never accused of choosing to change to a different race and ethnicity. Adopting from other countries decreases the number of children in orphanages and provides them with a better life. Identifying as transracial is valid, but not when it is defined as transitioning from one race to another.[2]

Counter arguments

Transracial adoption has potential negative side effects for the child being adopted. Often, they feel like the outsider of their families due to their physical appearance and commonly being mistaken as someone else. This consequently makes the person feel lonely and isolated. Yet, they cannot completely integrate into their racial group because of being raised in a different culture. Transracial adoptees feel like they cannot identify with the race they were born to or raised in, which can cause an identity crisis and mental health issues.[3]

Premises

[P1] Transracialism is associated with adopting children from other countries other than the one they were born from, not changing from one race to another. [P2] Transracially adopted children grow up in another culture. [P3] Therefore, being transracial is valid.

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://rewire.news/article/2018/01/05/transracial-real-not-racist-white-people-claim/
  2. https://universe.byu.edu/2016/06/22/transracial-adoption-can-present-challenges-for-families/
  3. https://medium.com/all-beige/five-potential-side-effects-of-transracial-adoption-f0beeb4b6fb8

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This page was last edited on Thursday, 14 May 2020 at 01:03 UTC

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