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She doesn't like to check the multiracial box. She wasn't black enough because she was Latina and not Latina enough because she was black.

What is blackness for one person may not necessarily be that for another. "Personally, my blackness is reflective of my ancestry, my culture and my inheritance." "Black," in reference to people and identity, she says, is worthy of capitalization.

"Colorism is a major problem within the Creole community and the black community," she says. It's perplexing and vexing how to work out this idea.

I can see how the one drop rule is why we have so much colorism in our society. "Black plus white doesn't equal black or it doesn't equal white.

"If they relate to the term 'black' as a descriptor of culture, history and ancestry, they have no difficulty seeing me as black." At one time in her life, she wished she were darker - she might have even swallowed a pill to give her instant pigment if there were such a thing. Nor was she able to pick up certain colloquialisms in the English spoken by the black kids in the Bronx, where she grew up the daughter of Dominican parents.