Is it an any wonder the USA has so many racial issues? We can’t even get the terms to identify each other right.
There are black people and white people. A color scheme, yes?
Okay, fine, but then to call an Asian person yellow is derogatory and to call a Native American person red is also offensive. But to describe someone as having olive colored skin is okay. Which kind of olive anyways – Kalamata or Graber’s? Nabali or Manzanillo? Mission or Pecholine?
Oriental is out and Occidental (its correspondent term) was never in.
To call a person a European is fine, but to call someone Oriental is frowned up. European cars and Oriental rugs, just fine. Granted no one under 75 calls Asia the Orient, but still…
And European styling? What the @#$@! is that? Italy and Sweden…same style?
Caucasian, or European. Are we using continents or mountain ranges to define ourselves? Hitler tried Aryan, but he probably would have put the real Aryans in his camps.
Are we using colors or names of countries, continents or geographical features? How about all of the above?
And then there’s hyphenating. Do we do it from the part of the world our ancestors came from? or just the country? Am I a European-American? Or a Northern-European American? Or an American of European descent? Or to be people first, a person living in American of European descent.
I think this inability for us to pick one spectrum of label ourselves is related to the affirmative action debate, also to the individual vs. group debate. What scale do we use to evaluate applicants for schools, jobs, contracts? When do we say that everyone is finally on the same playing field?
I certainly don’t.
I just know that I am a white Caucasian Occidental Polish-Czech-German-Irish-English-Scotch American.