Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Genealogy and the issue of race

I was watching a PBS show about genealogy and it re-ignited my interest in the subject.  It also ignited something else.  It ignited obsessive thoughts about race and racism.  It is like infidelity in that it cannot be escaped.  No matter what, racism is here to stay.  I am of the opinion that while race shouldn't matter for the most part, it doesn't change the fact that it does in some situations.  It is a fact that race permeates every area of the world and crosses all race and language barriers.

Now having said that, I find my obsessive thoughts about race and racism less bothersome.  As a matter of fact, I know that I am not obsessed with race to the point that I am so fixated that that is all I know about.  I have other interests and I would like to talk and write about other things.  Genealogy is one of those things.

I have taken an interest in genealogy over the years and it is amazing what I have found.  I am a descendant of black Americans who ancestors were slaves and European immigrants from England. My ancestry stretches through the Pee Dee area of South Carolina to Bladen County, in North Carolina.  I am unique in my own way.  I am proud of the ancestry that I have for it makes me who I am.  I cannot change it, nor do I want to change it at all.  That is like changing my DNA and I certainly don't want that.

My genealogy taught me so much that I would not be able to learn in many schools and even colleges and universities.  I feel proud of my lineage for that reason alone.  I have learned to embrace it.
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