Sunday, August 12, 2007

First White child

In Australia, the first baby with European ancestry was born on January 26, 1788. In the US, the first was in the 1560s, and in Canada, it was probably in the early 18th century. During colonial times, people in European colonies would often celebrate the birth of the "first White child" in their settlements. There was once an American postage stamp that celebrated the first European baby in North Carolina, USA (picture above).

When I learned about this, my first reaction was "that's racist!" If anyone celebrated something like that today, it would be the Ku Klux Klan or Neo-Nazis. And then I thought, "is it really racist?"

Celebrating White/Caucasian ethnic heritage is a lot more controversial these days because many people will think it's White supremacy or racism. A really good example of this is when Lisa McClelland (picture at left), a high school girl in California, tried to start a "Caucasian Club" 4 years ago, and it became a national controversy.

There's nothing wrong with being proud of your White/European heritage, but Whites/Europeans have been overrepresented throughout history and Eurocentrism has historically been a "normal" thing, so people might misunderstand you. Non-European heritages should definitely be celebrated because they've always been ignored, but celebrating Asian, Black, Latino, and indigenous cultures should never mean looking down upon European heritages. That's what Whites/Europeans have done to other people throughout history, and doing that to them would just reverse the hatred, when there should be no hatred in the first place.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

She later said she should have called it "The European Club" It sounds like fun. Too bad she didn't think of the name beforehand.