BREAKING: Woman found to be "part African!"

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 2018

The world the slaveholders made:
Is Nicole Persley, age 46, actually "part African?"

That's what Tara Bahrampour says in a lengthy, front-page report in today's Washington Post. Bahrampour's report concerns the way some people react to results of genetic tests.

Bahrampour seems to say that Persley was very surprised by results of a recent test. Beyond that, Bahrampour seems to say that Persley's mother was "flabbergasted" by the genetic test.

That said, is Persley "part African?" Bahrampour's claim is found here:
BAHRAMPOUR (2/7/18): Nicole Persley, who grew up in Nokesville, Va., was stunned to learn that she is part African. Her youth could not have been whiter. In the 1970s and ’80s in her rural home town, she went to school with farmers’ kids who listened to country music and sometimes made racist jokes. She was, as she recalls, “basically raised a Southern white girl.”
According to Bahrampour, "a recent genetic test confirmed that Persley’s DNA is around 8 percent African."

What explains the big surprise for this former non-African? According to Bahrampour, Persley's paternal grandfather "moved away from his native Georgia and started a new life passing as white in Michigan."

Bahrampour doesn't reveal the extent to which this man was "African." At any rate, you can imagine what happened next! According to Bahrampour, "he married a white woman, who bore Persley’s father."

Let's return to our basic question. Would you be inclined to say that Nicole Persley, now a Florida resident, is "part African?"

We'd be disinclined to say that. But then, we remember how upset everyone got, or pretended to get, when the ludicrous Donald J. Trump angrily said that a federal judge from Indiana was "Mexican."

Our confused ideas about so-called race are among the many terrible legacies we've received in this general area from our benighted ancestors. Putin dreams of creating as much confusion as their conceptual frameworks do.

That said, is Nicole Persley "part African?" Spoiler alert:

It sounds like she was born in Virginia, Also, she grew up there!

We may discuss a range of such topics next week. That said, we thought Bahrampour's 1900-word report was full of poorly reasoned, unfortunate cant and ran on the unfortunate fuels of torment and misdirection.

These confusions and obsessions are all part of "the world the slaveholders made." At present, our own tribe loves these mounds of misdirection more than anyone else.

For extra credit only: Read Christine Emba's fascinating column concerning certain gong-show aspects of the next census report.

15 comments:

  1. I agree that, "Our confused ideas about so-called race are among the many terrible legacies we've received in this general area from our benighted ancestors."

    But, we have made it worse, by insisting that we each identify ourselves as a particular race, and with race determining what perks are provided or burdens levied.

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    Replies
    1. A world without race? How are the cops going to know whether to harass you or not?

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  2. First off, a couple of nitpicks:

    Somerby says:
    "Bahrampour seems to say that Persley was very surprised by results of a recent test. Beyond that, Bahrampour seems to say that Persley's mother was "flabbergasted" by the genetic test. "

    Why does Somerby use the word "seems?" Or that "Bahrampour seems to say?"

    These are quotes from the story:

    "That was a bombshell revelation for me and my family,” said Persley.

    'Her mother was flabbergasted. “Her jaw dropped,” Persley said'

    Is Somerby trying to create the idea that Bahrampour is unclear or editorializing her material?

    Then there's this:

    "That said, is Nicole Persley "part African?" Spoiler alert:
    It sounds like she was born in Virginia, Also, she grew up there!"

    Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!

    That just seems stupid to me. "Part African" means that there is African DNA in Persley's blood, and thus indicates something about her family tree, something that Ms. Persley was interested to learn. She needs to learn not to react like this, so she'd better talk to Somerby next time.

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  3. It seems to me that if more people realize that their DNA is more mixed than they thought, that this might help to break down those old ideas about race that were a legacy of our "slaveholding past." And wouldn't that help to bring about the "Post-racial" world that Somerby has longed for in previous posts?

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