Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Learning to embrace our heritage

This op/ed published in the Vancouver Sun today by a friend from B.C. is powerful writing, and well worth the read:

Learning to embrace our heritage

Kishone Roy, Vancouver Sun
Published: Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Barack Obama's historic campaign for the American presidency has resonated for people all over the world, and in so many ways.

For me, watching his rise to prominence has been emotional and eye-opening. It has affected me on a personal level, and his example has left me both reflective and embarrassed.

Much has been made of the fact that Obama is on the cusp of becoming the first black president in U.S. history, and deservedly so. It is a monumental achievement that has the potential to change our world forever. Personally, I also find it noteworthy that Obama has accomplished so much as a person of mixed race; with a name that highlights his ethnic roots.

Like Obama I am from a mixed racial background. My father came to Canada from India and met my mother, who is of English and Acadian descent. Unlike Barack, I stopped using my ethnic-sounding first name in favour of something more Canadian when I was young. Many people of different racial backgrounds here do the same. Race is often viewed as a group experience; it can also be a unique and personal experience for each of us.
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1 comment:

Tony said...

Thanks Jeff, that means a lot coming from you as I respect both your writing and opinions.

Best,

Kishone.