More specifically: In the United States.
Now, we all know that until fairly recently, interracial relationships were not only frowned up, but illegal in terms of marriage. Society progresses, though, and as time has passed, only the most stringent racists still see a white woman and a black man, and think nasty epithets.
For the most part, people see it, and don't care. Or, rather, they don't see it. With it no longer being a big deal, their gaze lingers no longer than it would on any other couple. It has ceased to be something people are concerned with.
Now, before launching into the rest of this, a bit of backstory is required, I think. I live in the south. I was not born here, nor was I raised here. As such, I tend to look on behaviour in the south as something of a curiosity. I observe, but can't really identify, as I wasn't raised by people who held the same views as those here.
I first noticed what I am about to speak on about a decade ago. I was one-half of a black female/white male couple. It wasn't the only time it had occurred. Now, to me, this was something I'd never really thought about. When I met the first girl, we dated because we shared interests, we were similar enough to provoke various interpersonal chemistries, and other various items.
The color of her skin never really entered into my mind, except on the odd occasion of noticing our hands, if we were holding hands at the time.
Another time, I was fixed up, and it happened to be a black woman. Blind date. Did I ask in advance if she was black? No. Again, never occurred to me as a question that need be asked.
Now, backstory aside, we move on. When you see a black male and white female, it pretty much goes under your radar. Now, when you see a black female and white male, do you notice? Does it call attention to itself in your mind, simply by existing?
Not that I'm saying that you have a problem with it. Far from it. Simply that you're noticing something because you never see it.
While I see plenty of black men with white women (when I bother to specifically seek to notice), I can count on one hand the amount of times in the last decade that I've seen a black woman and a white man.
I don't generally notice people throwing dirty looks, or muttering under their breath at black men and white women.
I was shot a variety of foul looks, and had people bold enough to directly accost me with verbal attacks.
This is where I started to think about these things. Why is one acceptable to general society, but not the other? What's so different and wrong with it, that it requires specific attention paid?
I'd like to think maybe it's only the backwards throwbacks in the south that think this way, but look at the nation as a whole.
Tiger Woods has a white wife. Does anyone care? No. Can you name a black female celebrity with a white husband? I don't honestly think I can.
I'm sure you can easily name a movie or television program that has a black male character in a relationship with a white female.
Can you do the same for the inverse? Admittedly, I almost never watch television, so the only example I have is Boy Meets World, wherein the main character's friend had a girlfriend that was black.
The statistics back me up on this, as well. In terms of marriage between whites and blacks, it is 2.65 times more likely for it to be a black male, and white female. 73% of all black/white marriages are black male, white female.
For instance, in 2006:
|White Wife||Black Wife|
6.6% of married black men, and 2.8% of married black women, have a white spouse.
Or, in a different way of putting it: About 7% of marriages of black males are to a white woman. About two tenths of a single percent of marriages of white males are to a black woman.
Now, we come to my questions. (It's funny, I ask this, as if my blog actually has readers. Here's hoping.)
Can you report similar where you live? Is one common, and accepted, the other rare, and looked down upon?
Why do you think this is? Is it out of sexism? Racism? Both? Neither?
I've spent a lot of time thinking about this, and why it may be.
I'd enjoy a bit of discourse as to the various reasons people think this is. I have my own ideas/theories on it, but I'll refrain from putting them in the main post, as I do not wish to skew the things people may say.