The struggle with being a ‘White’ parent of ‘Black’, (we use Brown & Pink in our house), children is making sure they are still immersed in different cultures than your own. This is DRILLED into your head by social services, your adoption agency, and basically every dirty look you get from folks that don’t agree they were placed with you in the first place.

The problem comes when you have to decide, “what culture are we exposing them too?” Is it the world according to the CW and Tyler Perry? Rap culture? Bill Cosby (who’s been slapped the label of Modern Uncle Tom)? Malcolm X or Martin Luther King?

Here’s a hitch in the mix. Our kids are mixed race. Their mother was a Gypsy from Chile. This is why you see Mia throwing curses and hexes on folks in our comics . It’s a little nod to her mother’s past, while keeping it light and fun. We know that their father was marked down as African American on paper, but we have no way of knowing – short of exposing ourselves to craziness – what genetic background he has. And really, we don’t care. We’ve decided to expose them to ALL cultures, with a heavier dash of Chilean and African American.

The truth is, this is a lose/lose proposition in some folks eyes. I know plenty of kids who get the “you act white”, (sadly, it seems Uncle Tom isn’t even in these kid’s lexicon), at school each day. A close friend’s son gets this hurled at him frequently. Are his parents white? Nope. They just insist he look a certain way (pants up, shirt tucked), talk a certain way (enunciate, don’t slur or cuss), and they don’t let him listen to music THEY find degrading (a lot of rap). I agree with them on all points, so if this kid gets slammed for ‘acting white’, what’s poor CJ have to look forward to?

We also have another culture to expose them to… ours. Now, this may outrage some, as it’s viewed we are the most exposed culture in the world, but that isn’t always a good thing. Many of our flaws are out there for everyone to see, elitism, oppression, Honey Boo Boo. And it’s socially acceptable to dissect white culture without bringing up the term racism.

Throughout the month of February, I hope to bridge some of the divide with thoughtful exposition and humorous comics. I imagine some will never be on board with us having our kids, but that doesn’t matter to us. We love them. And when things go wrong, we love them more.

And in case you’d like to know how I summed up a recent discussion on MLK with CJ, here it is: “A lot of white people were horrible and thought somehow, they were better and deserved more, than people with darker skin. Martin Luther King pointed out that we are all equal, and unfortunately, he was killed for saying so. I’m disgusted we even have to talk about it, because there is absolutely NO EXCUSE for this to have ever happened, especially a mere 46 years ago. If anyone tells you, you are ‘less than’ them, please feel free to call them an ignorant moron. It’s not just a holiday. It’s a day to remember a Great man, and a nation that was too slow to recognize it’s faults.”