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Old May 16th, 2009, 03:39 AM   #1
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White African American Sues NJ Med School

"White African-American" Sues N.J. Medical School



By Chelsea-Badeau

Sat, 16 May 2009 02:02:59 GMT




Can a white person be an African-American? Paulo Serodio, a 45-year-old naturalized American of Portugese heritage born in Mozambique, says yes. He is suing the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey for discrimination that he says led to his suspension.



He told ABCNews.com that his instructor, Dr. Kathy Ann Duncan, asked the students for self-definitions during a discussion on culture and medicine. Serodio identified himself as a “white African-American.” He says Duncan later told him never to refer to himself as that again, because it was “offensive” to others in the class.



Serodio said that he made a similar reference in another class and also wrote an article in the student newspaper titled, “A More Colorful View Than Black and White.” He says these actions led to harassment from other students and ultimately his suspension for unprofessional conduct.



"I wouldn't wish this to my worst enemy," Serodio said. "I'm not exaggerating. This has destroyed my life, my career."



While Serodio’s suit, which asks for reinstatement at the school and monetary damages, is bringing new attention to the meaning of the term “African-American,” it’s not a new debate.



In 2004, a white high-school student (born in Johannesburg) named Trevor Richards was suspended from an Omaha, Nebraska school after distributing posters that promoted him as a candidate for the school’s "Distinguished African-American Student" award. WorldNetDaily.com reported that this story sent “shock waves across America as debate rages over who can claim rights to the term ‘African-American.’”



What does “African-American” mean? Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary defines the term as “an American of African and especially of black African descent.”



So if only people of black African descent should be allowed to refer to themselves as African-American, what is Serodio? "There are people of all races who are African," Serodio told ABCNews.com. He said he had no problem identifying himself in that way until Duncan’s class.



Will we, as Americans, ever get to the point where we drop the titles and just become Americans?



In college, I studied abroad in Australia. One of my roommates was from Ireland. When she was introduced to some other exchange students, she asked one of the girls what she was, and the girl replied, “I’m Irish.” My roommate said, “No you’re not. I’m Irish.” The girl was from America. Her great grandparents were from Ireland. My Irish roommate couldn’t understand why she had referred to herself as Irish and not American.



I think we can celebrate the uniqueness of our own individual heritages and backgrounds without getting wrapped up in unnecessary titles that often hold little meaning for the people using them. Maybe I am an eternal optimist (something I have been accused of in the past), but I would like to think that at some point in the future, Americans will be less concerned with specific titles and identifications and just relate as Americans that share the same concerns, hopes, and dreams.



"White African-American" Sues N.J. Medical School - Badeau POV - Comcast.net
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Old May 16th, 2009, 05:49 AM   #2
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I never did like the term "African American." That means I could call myself "European American." However, I've only been to Europe recently.
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Old May 16th, 2009, 06:55 AM   #3
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I am of European Jewish ancestry. I'm not technically white.



I think this is an interesting concept. In America, we certainly ascribe African-American to the preferred term used when describing American blacks. But - it's true - if your history is African and you're an American, you're an African American, no matter what your skin pigmentation.
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Old May 16th, 2009, 07:30 AM   #4
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A White African American? ROTFLMBAO. Damn that sounds

like the guy was thinking tough about how he can make a

slick move. This is the first time where I read about a White

man calling himself a African-American, and I can't help but

wonder what is his motive by calling himself a African-American.



That article appears to be a stunt to make it look like that guy who

was in that movie " I crossed the color line " meaning that he was a

half breed, and he could be classified as a Black or White person.

Another issue that I have found to be hard to understand is if the

Black race so bad, why is it everyone outside of the Black race wants

to be Black?, and believe me there is some Blacks who wants to be

White.



Sure I understand that we are not talking directly about race, but

I am picturing that something is strange about this guy. Here is

a realistic though why is he suing the school? Was it because he

signed up as a Black student, and maybe because high yellow white

they thought he was Black.



From what I read also the School considered him as being White,

but he wants them to address him as being Black. In all my years

I have NEVER seen or heard a anyone who is foreign acknowledge

having any African hertiage traces, and this makes me wonder if

this is a message to President Obama in a indirect way since

many Americans seem to have a problem with the President's

heritage.



In conclusion this reminds me of a thought about people who claim

to be White until they seem to think that they will qualify for some

thing by saying I am Black, and there is Blacks who think the same

way.
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Old May 16th, 2009, 07:48 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tristanrobin
I am of European Jewish ancestry. I'm not technically white.



I think this is an interesting concept. In America, we certainly ascribe African-American to the preferred term used when describing American blacks. But - it's true - if your history is African and you're an American, you're an African American, no matter what your skin pigmentation.
Which in itself is kinda funny for most "African American" who are for the pretty much BOTH European AND African. It's pretty plain to see that I have more than "African" going on in my family line. Considering that from what I have heard, the African part of my lineage left Africa a LONG time ago and poor White folk that mixed with us were either Scot or Irish(maybe both), I could just as logically call myself Euroafrican American. LOL. This country is a trip.
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Old May 16th, 2009, 08:23 AM   #6
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The issue is that there are many white Africans.



Hell, they RAN South Africa for how long?
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Old May 16th, 2009, 08:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tristanrobin
The issue is that there are many white Africans.



Hell, they RAN South Africa for how long?
A period of time after they were slaves there, I forget.



But back to the topic, it IS funny that a White guy is getting discriminated against because of the political correctness of "African American". I read that story yesterday and thought it was amusing.
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Old May 16th, 2009, 09:01 AM   #8
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I think I agree with the author, who seems to be saying that we need to get past all the labels. It seems to me that too much is being made of this by both sides.
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Old May 16th, 2009, 12:14 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tristanrobin
I am of European Jewish ancestry. I'm not technically white.



I think this is an interesting concept. In America, we certainly ascribe African-American to the preferred term used when describing American blacks. But - it's true - if your history is African and you're an American, you're an African American, no matter what your skin pigmentation.
My heritage is German. My grandparents were the last of my clan to speak German (Pennsylvannia Dutch dialect). I have never been to Germany and the last thing I would call myself is German American.
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Old May 16th, 2009, 12:16 PM   #10
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I read that Blacks in Africa actually resent blacks in America from referring to themselves as "African American."
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