I have a problem with color

In recent months, I have been thinking a lot about the history of how color has been used to refer to people. Why we do it and how it started. As a current human, you probably know that races are primarily divided into black, white, and brown. This has always been funny to me and almost annoying at the same time. Most people accept and embrace it as a default way of thinking about themselves and others, so my situation seems unique.

I have a rather difficult relationship with this concept, perhaps because of the novelty of living in a country where people are classified based on color. My feelings are almost close to guilt and shame whenever I refer to someone as "white" or "black." It's almost as if I have reduced their humanity to bare colors.

I often remind myself (with occasional failure) to use words like Caucasian, Hispanic, Latino, Caribbean, African-American, African, Asian, or Kiwi, as they seem more human and contextual. This categorization still fails, as there is valid pushback from people who don’t like to be categorized as African-Americans because they have no connection to Africa. I agree with this reasoning, as they’re not migrants; neither were their parents or grandparents, so they strongly and only identify as “black.”

I’m still diagnosing my troubled relationship with these categorizations, and I think my arrogance might also be at play. Why am I reluctant to accept it as normal? Do I hate race categorization because I don’t want to be reduced to color?

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