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Friday, September 26, 2008

A Teaching Moment

Today's outing led us eventually to Barnes & Noble where the kids and I had coffee and hot cocoa, respectively. Camille must have seen a bi-racial couple walking by and asked me,

"Mom, is it okay for a brown skinned person and a white skinned person to be married?"

The blessed child thinks that any couple that holds hands or kisses is married... (Which is a thought that popped into my head when she asked this.)

"Why do you think it's not okay?" I asked. "Well, they have different skin color, aren't they different species?" she plainly asked while I tried not to laugh out loud....seriously.

"I have blue eyes and you have brown, right? Are we different?" I asked.
"Yes and no," she answered.
"Men are men and women are women- all humans have that in common. God made us all unique so some people have green eyes, others have brown, some have blonde hair and some have brown hair. Some people have curly hair, some have straight. The color of skin is the same as the color of our eyes and hair, it's just one way God made us all unique but the same. Men are men no matter what color their hair, skin or eyes are and women are women no matter what color their hair, skin or eyes." I explained.

She then went on to explain how people have more characteristics that are different, height and weight. Then she asked me, "but is it okay?" I told her God said he created a man and a woman and it was good, He didn't say a white man and white woman, He said MAN and WOMAN so yes, it more than is good.

We live in the South, we have family members that are not healthy in their attitudes and it has always been a fear of mine that the kids would pick up on this without me being able to talk to them beforehand. This was perfect, especially since we'll talk about slaves soon in history. Thank you Lord!



CookieMonster said...

What a wonderful answer you gave, Jessica! How good of the Lord to give you such an opportunity!

And you're right, not only does the Bible say that we are all one race (ahem, we have the same original mother and father) but science has confirmed it as well.

If you're at all interested (and it's ok if you're not) you could check this out:
It's long, but it's right on!

Blessings and love,

Michele said...

Great job, Jessica! My girls have a bi-racial cousin. He lives in another state, but I have always thought it was a blessing that they grow up loving a family member that does not look just like the rest of us.


Vix said...

What a cute conversation.. ;)

chrys said...

really sweet post. what a teachable moment!

i enjoy your blog!


Jennefer said...

My aunt is married to a wonderful and kind African-American man and they have 2 bi-racial cousins whom they adore. It's funny that they have never seemed to notice the skin color difference but I look forward to having a similar conversation with my boys someday. It's so nice when those things come up naturally, isn't it?! :) Have a great weekend!!!

Chris said...

Teachable moments are the best. I wish all children could be given such sensible, thoughtful answers to their questions. If they did, what a wonderful world this would be.

School for Us said...

What a wonderful answer! I just posted about our trip to see the Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka museum in Kansas. It is hard to understand how differently people are treated... all because of skin color! It reminds me of the Christian song that starts "Pardon me, your epidermis is showing... I can't help but note your shade of melanin." That's all it is - different amounts of melanin! :-)

christinemm said...

Wow what a great job you did explaining that.

Despite our cultural beliefs that say this is okay I do find it interesting when I hear scientific studies that say our brains are wired to distrust people that look different than us. Says something for what is hardwired in our brains from our pasts.

It was not long ago in America when biracial marriage or relationships was considered taboo.

Anyhow my point is that sometimes when kids question that I think it is something deep in their brain, from their 'primitive brain' talking not something they necessarily learned from the family.