This is said to be Kamala Harris’s birth certificate. I can’t say that it’s authentic, but it looks plausible. From Tariq Nasheed’s twitter account:
For “Color or Race of Mother,” Kamala’s South Asian mother put “Caucasian,” which was a standard term in the 1960s (see the LAPD cop show Adam-12 for where most people in L.A. were described by the radio dispatcher as Caucasian). In the 1970s, South Asians got jealous of “Oriental” businessmen getting low interest loans and government contracting privileges while they were stuck with worthless Caucasian Privilege, so they had themselves regrouped with Orientals as “Asians” for the 1980 Census.
Back home he’s a middle-class mulatto, a status that isn’t really recognized in the U.S. outside of Louisiana.
The Spanish ruled Jamaica from 1494 to 1655, when the English conquered it, so Jamaica still uses the Latin color continuum rather than the North American color line.
So describing himself as “Jamaican” is a reasonable way for Dr. Harris to fill in a small space with a simple answer that Americans would grasp.
As I said, no proof that this is real, but it seems pretty likely.
iSteve commenter TamJam writes:
Move over, Orange. TamJam is the new Black.
Both self-identifications are curious.
First the TamBram half.
Indian-Americans self-identifying as “Caucasian” has a rich history starting with “United States v. Bhagat Singh Thind” (1923), when Thind, a founding member of Ghadar party, argued
“that he was a white person by arguing that he was a member of the Caucasian race. Thind argued using “a number of anthropological texts” that people in Punjab and other Northwestern Indian states belonged to the “Aryan race”, and Thind cited scientific authorities such as Johann Friedrich Blumenbach as classifying Aryans as belonging to the Caucasian race. Thind argued that, although some racial mixing did indeed occur between the Indian castes, the caste system had largely succeeded in India at preventing race-mixing. Thind argued that by being a “high-caste, of full Indian blood” he was a “Caucasian” according to the anthropological definitions of his day.”
“As a result of the U.S. Supreme Court decision finding that no person of Indian origin could become a naturalized American, the first person from the Indian subcontinent to become an American citizen, A. K. Mozumdar, had his citizenship revoked.”
Indians had to wait until Luce–Celler Act (1946) which “reversed the Thind decision by explicitly extending racial eligibility for naturalization to natives of India, and set a token quota for their immigration at 100 per year.”
And Shyamala could legally self-identify as “Caucasian”.
Now that “Asians” are becoming elite, at least from a university admission officer’s perspective, it might be worthwhile to reclaim “Caucasian” status and rehash Thind’s argument.
Unless of course you are half Jam.
On Jamaica Global Online, Donald Harris wrote eloquently about his mulatto heritage –
“My roots go back, within my lifetime, to my paternal grandmother Miss Chrishy (née Christiana Brown, descendant of Hamilton Brown who is on record as plantation and slave owner and founder of Brown’s Town) and to my maternal grandmother Miss Iris (née Iris Finegan, farmer and educator, from Aenon Town and Inverness, ancestry unknown to me).”
And then dissociated himself from his daughter’s Marijuana smoking joke – “Half my family’s from Jamaica. Are you kidding me?” – by commenting on the same Jamaican portal –
“My dear departed grandmothers (whose extraordinary legacy I described in a recent essay on this website), as well as my deceased parents , must be turning in their grave right now to see their family’s name, reputation and proud Jamaican identity being connected, in any way, jokingly or not with the fraudulent stereotype of a pot-smoking joy seeker and in the pursuit of identity politics. Speaking for myself and my immediate Jamaican family, we wish to categorically dissociate ourselves from this travesty.”
This second page, however, is now 404 and can only be retrieved from Google cache. That also is curious.