I came across this interesting article from The Root about the presumed innocence of kids when it comes to seeing skin color and ethnic differences. It shows how complicated and uncomplicated the issue can be all at the same time.
Here is an excerpt:
The other day, when I was bringing my son to preschool, a classmate greeted him at the door by shouting, “You’re African! You’re from Africa!” My son and I were knocked back for a moment, but he quickly recovered (as only a 5-year-old could), once his teacher motioned for him to help with an art project. I, on the other hand, bumbled my way through a retort to the effect of “We’re not from Africa; we’re from America,” and briefly considered whether to mention our 200 years of family history in Haiti and Greece.
For the record, my son was born in Boston and raised across the river in Cambridge, Mass., where he lives with my husband and me. He has never been to Africa, though he can identify the continent on a map. He does, however, have brown skin, as do I. It is also relevant to the story that the classmate who greeted him has a history of taunting her peers, including my son, for just about anything. Apparently, my son’s brown skin was yet another opportunity for teasing.
To read the entire article click here. It is worth the read.