Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

3 Bumps

How do you refer to an African American person?

I was telling a story to my friend & another two ladies overheard & I referred to the man in a pleasant way as a Black Guy. I thought I heard a gasp from one of the ladies near us & I think she said "did she say Black Guy" to the other woman. I just continued talking to my friend. In retrospect I am thinking about what others call black people? No offense towards anyone.


Asked by Anonymous at 5:53 PM on Jun. 22, 2013 in Politics & Current Events

This question is closed.
Answers (64)
  • black

    You have no way to know if the person you are talking about is of African heritage or if they're American. For all you know they're a Cuban Canadian.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 5:55 PM on Jun. 22, 2013

  • Honestly, most of the black people I've hung out with prefer to be called "black" instead of "African-American."

    I remember I was meeting somebody at a bus station once, and I asked one of the security guards if he'd seen a big black blind bald guy with a rolling suitcase.

    He gasped and said, "You're not supposed to say that!"

    I said, "Say what? Big, black, blind, bald, or rolling suitcase? If I'd said a visually impaired, folically challenged, African-American, you wouldn't have followed the description."

    It's like the labels for people with disabilities. In my lifetime, we've been handicapped, disabled, challenged, and now special needs. People get so uncomfortable stumbling all over themselves to pick the right label, it creates more of a barrier than it ever hopes to solve.

    Answer by Ballad at 9:08 PM on Jun. 22, 2013

  • who want to be identified with their American descensdants?

    If her child has to deal with people who want to be identified with someone who hasn't been born yet, I think she should back away slowly and call security.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 11:15 PM on Jun. 22, 2013

  • well...somebody thinks she's the end-all-be-all of racial and ethnic terminology.

    Answer by okmanders at 10:31 PM on Jun. 22, 2013

  • Black if needed to describe race. My mom had blonde hair and blue eyes and was African American. She was born in South Africa but became an American citizen as a young adult. So African American really doesn't describe race very well for many.

    Answer by healthykidsmom at 11:48 PM on Jun. 22, 2013

  • I'm so confused about that too. Judging by the answers I guess black works? I mean to me it's not offensive if somebody calls me "white", I'm as white as a damn ghost.

    Answer by JackieGirl007 at 6:35 PM on Jun. 22, 2013

  • Black, because the only real African American I know is whiter then I am lol.

    Answer by funlovinlady at 7:24 PM on Jun. 22, 2013

  • did any ask you for that info

    to quote, "It is either African-American or European-American to be PC "

    PC according to whom? You?

    Answer by feralxat at 10:33 PM on Jun. 22, 2013

  • Typically I use the person's NAME.

    Answer by KristiS11384 at 5:56 PM on Jun. 22, 2013

  • It depends on the context. If it is about someone I know I refer to them by name. If I am talking about someone I don't know personally I may refer to them as black. I do not like to hyphenate American (you either are or you are not) nor do I assume heritage.


    Answer by QuinnMae at 7:04 PM on Jun. 22, 2013