racism against interracial dating
Thirty-five years ago, the New York Times published an article about Ian Whitely and his wife Sherrinwho lived in the then-nothern Transvaal. Their racism against interracial dating story made international news because it was sanctioned by then-prime minister P. Botha himself and had found its way past the strict race laws of the time. Ian Whitely was white, Sherrin Whitely was Indian. At the time, their relationship violated at least three laws: In the Whitelys were the poster couple for "changing racial attitudes", reporter Joseph Lelyveld said, and their story showed that a "good love story can occasionally have more force that a cold statute It took the Whitelys a reported 15 years to get to a government-sanctioned state of marital bliss.
After marrying in Botswana they racism against interracial dating to Norway and then the United Kingdom thanks to the United Nations' refugee program. Longing for home, Ian "offered to be reclassified as nonwhite" so that he and Sherrin would be able to live together in South Africa. The prime minister said in a letter that he "regretted" Whitley could not reclassify himself as he was "obviously white", but that he and Sherrin would be able to return home on their South Racism against interracial dating passports and live without fear of persecution or prosecution.
Things have changed a lot in the 50 years since the Whiteleys first met. Today, government cares considerably less about who you love, regardless of their race or gender, which works out for interracial couples like Pippa Tshabalala, who is white. The couple met and started dating a month after the elections. They've been married for 11 of those years and have two sons. Without skipping a beat, upon introducing him, the birthday girl's sister told the couple exactly how she felt about their relationship.
Jones said these comments have been incredibly hurtful and often put her in a difficult position -— feeling stuck between the people she has known her, racism against interracial dating whole life and the partner she loved. Having people constantly point out their differences was tough. For others it's not always so blatant. They've never experienced outright discrimination for being in an interracial relationship, but even the most subtle comments can be difficult to ignore.
This has happened with a former partner, who is also black, and it is usually so that my partner can hear, rather than to get a response from me. People also don't realise that I understand some isiZulu or SeSotho, and often can understand what they're saying". Naidoo thinks addressing these comments isn't always worth the engagement. Confronting people on them saying 'She thinks she's better than us,' or 'You see what racism against interracial dating do?
Brushing it off is the only way to manage, Naidoo said, but they're always conscious of how others see them. But we always check in with each other on it, just so we are both aware of what is happening," she said. For Tshabalala and her husband, there has been support for their relationship right from the start —- even in the face of some resistance.
Sekwa's family is quite mixed, so it was never an issue for them. My mum was more concerned about the age difference between us," she says. When they met, in high school, Pippa was 13 and Sekwa She believes their ages are what worked to their advantage. It's possible that more people had a problem than we realised, but we were oblivious to it. As we got older, I started noticing more if people were staring," Tshabalala said. In raising their sons, Tshabalala is aware that the innocence of age may soon be replaced by exposure to the world.
Their eldest son is five years old and just started Grade R at a school in Sandton. Even so, the fact that their marriage is interracial is not the focus for the Tshabalalas and it's evident in Pippa's lighthearted approach to their differences and the way they unsettle other people - like being a white woman with the surname Tshabalala. They see my name and are shocked when they meet me," she says laughing.
It's a difficult reality to navigate, whether exposed to blatant discrimination or microaggressive treatment. While, unlike the Whitelys, it doesn't take a sanctioned nod from the president to be able to love who you do, social pressures can sometimes be too much to handle. Decades after South Africa embraced an inclusive society on paper, it's mindsets that need to change rather than legislation.
February is the month of love. At the Huffington Post South Africa, we take a look at how South Africans are finding and holding on to love. Author Shubnum Khan tells us about how cross-border romances are made or broken, tech journalist Nafisa Akabor looks at how social media replaced your meet-cute and lifestyle editor Sarah Koopman has some advice on how to get away from that tired old dinner-and-a-movie setup. Find them all and more hereor try these. Get top stories and blog posts emailed to me each day.
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