The racist roots of interracial couples fetishization

Since being legalized on June 12, 1967, interracial couples are perceived as trendy, desirable and sexy. Interracial couples are frequently fetishized, with commenters going to the extreme of suggesting that their mixed babies will be beautiful. This so-called compliment is, in fact, one of the prime examples of fetishization. 

We shouldn’t still be experiencing this in 2020.

Interracial couples are looked at differently purely for being of different races.  

In an interview with senior Kimberly Jones, she clarifies that she doesn’t like all the comments. 

“My boyfriend is white. I’m Black. In 2020 this shouldn’t be an issue,” she said. “But all the time, I get weird comments like, ‘Oh, your babies are gonna be so cute being mixed.’ Like, that is so rude.”

But her boyfriend, Arron Williams, often gets other comments. 

“People say ‘Oh good on you getting a Black girl,’ or saying she’s a gold-digger and stuff. It’s heartbreaking,” he said.

Often when you look in popular media, you’ll see interracial couples, such as in  “Love Actually,” “Focus” and even “The Bodyguard.” Many movies and shows put interracial couples in the spotlight. 

Yet, at the same time, there are just as many movies that paint Black couples in a terrible light. Take seemingly every Tyler Perry movie. It seems to be the same trope. 

The dark skin husband treats his Black wife with a lack of care. And then the light-skinned, almost white friend comes in and swoops her off her feet.

Think I’m lying? Take “Diary of a Mad Black Woman.” TheBlack husband kicks out his Black wife for a white mistress. The wife eventually falls for the light-skinned UHaul driver. 

It’s a repeated stereotype shown in movies: Interracial relationships are more stable and more successful than Black relationships. 

That is a little known racist concept. Think about it for a second.

Many people think that the Black person in the relationship, typically the female, is a trophy partner, someone who’s not doing much but sitting there and looking exotic. Meanwhile, the white partner, invariably a man, is seen as the one making the money, the controller — the master, if you will. 

Not to mention the sexualization of these types of relationships. In a 2018 lawsuit, a Black pornstar sued his former employer for not only asking if his white co-star could call him the n-word but telling her to do so after he repeatedly said no.

The straight porn industry actually defines “interracial” as being between a Black man and a white woman. Therein lies the issue. 

There is an industry definition because the stigma exists that women degrade their careers by performing with Black men. But there is enough of a market, namely from white men, that there are entire studios dedicated to the genre.

An entire genre of porn is dedicated to mixed couples. There is no “white couple” or “Black couple” genre section. But there is one for interracial couples. 

Interracial couples are not your taboo fetish at which to gawk.