As the uncle of my two wonderful biracial nephews, I am the world’s greatest skeptic when it comes to those narrow-minded people among us who bemoan interracial unions because, “It’s so hard on the children.”
Seriously, how many times have I heard that one in my life, dating back to the sheltered world of Mahopac, N.Y.â€”my hometown. Truth is, the statement “It’s so hard on the children” is a self-fulfilling prophecy. If biracial kids struggle, it’s only because there are legions of people who bemoan their existences … the same folks who utter “It’s so hard on the children” to begin with.
In other words, the people stating “It’s hard on the children” are the ones making it hard on the children.
But I digress. Just read this heartwarming story of Keith Bardwell, justice of the piece for Louisiana’s Tangipahoa Parish’s 8th Ward and a man who, last week, refused to license an interracial marriage. His reasoning?Â “My main concern,” he says, “is for the children.â€
This passage from the piece, which appeared in the Hammond Star, is especially lovely:
Bardwell said from his experience, â€œ99 percent of the timeâ€ the interracial couple consists of a black man and white woman.
â€œI find that rather confusing,â€ he said.
He said he has discussed the topic with blacks and whites, along with witnessing some interracial marriages. Bardwell said he came to the conclusion that most black society does not readily accept offspring of such relationships, and neither does white society.
â€œYet, the children are innocent. They had nothing to do with that,â€ he said.
In many cases, he said, the grandparents or a relative ends up with the children.
â€œI donâ€™t do interracial marriages because I donâ€™t want to put children in a situation they didnâ€™t bring on themselves,â€ Bardwell said. â€œIn my heart, I feel the children will later suffer.â€
Bardwell insists he’s not racist, noting that he actually allows blacks in his house, and that he gladly serves them fried chicken and watermelon and lets them use the toilet (lining required if they poop, of course).
And I think to myself, what a wonderful world …