Some see it as "heartening" that by 2050 we'll have a white minority for the first time.
Heartening: Today's teen population is the most racially diverse this country has ever seen--the largest percentage of non-white and multiracial Americans are under age 20, by 2050 we'll have a white minority for the first time--and in many delightful ways, they're over it. They have friends, boyfriends, girlfriends, parents of all kinds. Race isn't necessarily something they think about--or choose to write about. As wildly diverse as the young authors of Red are, racial identity, theirs or others', was rarely an issue that came up in their essays.
Disheartening: This disturbed some of the older people, and a troubling, complicated kind of racism kicked in again and again. "Why are so many of the girls in the book white?" a reader, and purported fan of the book, would ask. The first few times it happened, I'd defend my choices by rattling off a list of the ethnicities represented. Then I realized this is only more of the same, and I was acting like an old person. I'd smile (if live) or kindly reply (via email) with, "What is it that makes you think these girls are white?" And then the racism began. Turns out, if you're of color in this country, the generation before you expects you to write about The Struggle--not TV or even your dad, not 9/11 or private school or museums.
So, in the wake of Obama's race speech--and to take back the horrible assumptions made by adults--for RED's first HuffPo blog, I asked some of the book's authors, representing a full range of perspectives, ages, geography, and yes, ethnicities to write on how much race is--or isn't--a part of their lives today.