Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

(BLS, URM status, non-traditional, GLBT)
Andrewfromla818

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Demographics help

Postby Andrewfromla818 » Mon Dec 25, 2017 2:50 am

I am applying to law school this cycle and for the demographics page on the application, it does not have my ethnicity. I heard it is a bad idea to check the box that says "Decline to respond". As messed up as this sounds, law schools want diverse students and affirmative action is real.

Im asking you guys what to check it. I am middle eastern, Persian. I am technically considered white/Caucasian, I was born here. But as far as my chances of getting into a better law school, what box should I check? " Decline to respond" or " White/Caucasian"

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april_ludgate

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Re: Demographics help

Postby april_ludgate » Mon Dec 25, 2017 5:42 am

Andrewfromla818 wrote:I am applying to law school this cycle and for the demographics page on the application, it does not have my ethnicity. I heard it is a bad idea to check the box that says "Decline to respond". As messed up as this sounds, law schools want diverse students and affirmative action is real.

Im asking you guys what to check it. I am middle eastern, Persian. I am technically considered white/Caucasian, I was born here. But as far as my chances of getting into a better law school, what box should I check? " Decline to respond" or " White/Caucasian"


If you hit decline to respond they'll just assume you're white.

driggsbedford

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Re: Demographics help

Postby driggsbedford » Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:26 am

Seems like you answered you own question. You are Caucasian. You can check Caucasian, decline to reply, or lie. One of these three options is clearly wrong, you decide!

Bigbertha008

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby Bigbertha008 » Sun May 06, 2018 2:13 am

Was wondering if something like Palestinian, which is mostly Hebrew with a mix of African and Greek would count as URM

goingnutslawschool

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby goingnutslawschool » Sun May 06, 2018 3:51 am

No, you would not be considered a URM.

Synapse2018

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby Synapse2018 » Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:56 am

You need to “identify” with a group to be considered URM. You don’t need to necessarily have that blood. I.e. a white child adopted and raised by black parents can be considered AA for admissions purposes if that’s how they identify. If your step dad is URM, check that box if you identify with his culture and was raised that way.

nixy

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby nixy » Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:30 am

....really??

I think you’d have a great diversity statement but I don’t think having an African-American stepdad makes a white person African-American.

(Or: okay, Rachel.)

L_William_W

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby L_William_W » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:36 pm

Synapse2018 wrote:You need to “identify” with a group to be considered URM. You don’t need to necessarily have that blood. I.e. a white child adopted and raised by black parents can be considered AA for admissions purposes if that’s how they identify. If your step dad is URM, check that box if you identify with his culture and was raised that way.


So by this logic, a Korean person can identify as a Mexican?

Synapse2018

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby Synapse2018 » Thu Jun 07, 2018 1:25 pm

L_William_W wrote:
Synapse2018 wrote:You need to “identify” with a group to be considered URM. You don’t need to necessarily have that blood. I.e. a white child adopted and raised by black parents can be considered AA for admissions purposes if that’s how they identify. If your step dad is URM, check that box if you identify with his culture and was raised that way.


So by this logic, a Korean person can identify as a Mexican?


It is completely possible, but it depends on the circumstances. The diversity statement is generally a good place to address that type of association

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby nixy » Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:17 pm

Writing about this in a diversity statement is fine. Checking the box for Mexican or African-American is not.

ZGergis

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby ZGergis » Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:51 am

Can someone of southern Egypt descent identify as black? I'm not technically sub-Saharan or Nubian but I have dark brown skin, frizzy black hair, and more than 50% of people in the US think I'm black. Southern or Upper Egyptians (as one would predict from basic geography, it being so close to Sudan) are a lot darker than northern or Lower Egyptians--no white passing down here, a decent amount in the more Middle Eastern north.

Before you make assumptions, google image "people of Luxor" to see what UPper Egyptians look like. Much darker than northern Egyptians (who are the vast majority of immigrants and Egyptians in the media and politics, incidentally).

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby QContinuum » Thu Oct 11, 2018 11:42 am

ZGergis wrote:Can someone of southern Egypt descent identify as black? I'm not technically sub-Saharan or Nubian but I have dark brown skin, frizzy black hair, and more than 50% of people in the US think I'm black. Southern or Upper Egyptians (as one would predict from basic geography, it being so close to Sudan) are a lot darker than northern or Lower Egyptians--no white passing down here, a decent amount in the more Middle Eastern north.

Before you make assumptions, google image "people of Luxor" to see what UPper Egyptians look like. Much darker than northern Egyptians (who are the vast majority of immigrants and Egyptians in the media and politics, incidentally).


In the U.S., Egyptians are not generally considered "black" any more than dark-skinned Indians, South Asians, Pacific Islanders, or Hispanics are considered "black."

Further, it seems obvious from your post that you don't actually identify as "black" in real life. You merely wish to inquire whether you can take advantage of the URM boost for purposes of law school admissions. Don't do it.

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby ZGergis » Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:01 pm

QContinuum wrote:
ZGergis wrote:Can someone of southern Egypt descent identify as black? I'm not technically sub-Saharan or Nubian but I have dark brown skin, frizzy black hair, and more than 50% of people in the US think I'm black. Southern or Upper Egyptians (as one would predict from basic geography, it being so close to Sudan) are a lot darker than northern or Lower Egyptians--no white passing down here, a decent amount in the more Middle Eastern north.

Before you make assumptions, google image "people of Luxor" to see what UPper Egyptians look like. Much darker than northern Egyptians (who are the vast majority of immigrants and Egyptians in the media and politics, incidentally).


In the U.S., Egyptians are not generally considered "black" any more than dark-skinned Indians, South Asians, Pacific Islanders, or Hispanics are considered "black."

Further, it seems obvious from your post that you don't actually identify as "black" in real life. You merely wish to inquire whether you can take advantage of the URM boost for purposes of law school admissions. Don't do it.


Respectfully I infer from your response that you don't know that much about Egypt. You are assuming that people indigenous to a huge country that borders Sudan in the South and the Med Sea in the north are homogeneous, and this is not true at all. Upper Egyptians, starting in Luxor, look more African than white and are genetically closer to Africans/Nubians than whites. The analogy with dark skinned Asians is completely irrelevant since we (southern Egyptians) are extremely close genetically to black East Africans (much closer than to Europeans), and dark skinned Asians are completely different.

From an academic study by A.R. Khales, summarizing genetic testing: "Lower Egyptian groups have tended to pool more with European and Mediterranean groups, while Upper Egyptians are biologically more similar to southern African groups. The geographic proximity of Lower Egyptians to the Mediterranean Sea and of Upper Egyptians to Nubia likely explains the phenotypic and genotypic differences between the two areas.["

As to identity, you may have a point. I identify as Egyptian and certainly a person of color, not really black. But I absolutely believe (and this isn't just my belief, it's an objective fact based on the genes and phenotypes of southern Egyptians) that black is the closest box to my race available. There is no "other" box on LSAC or any application so it seems like the best choice. To lump ALL North Africans into "white" is questionable enough for MIddle Eastern North Africans, but ludicrous for southern Egyptians like myself.

Incidentally, the practice of checking the "closest" box is not unique to my situation. Plenty of Middle Eastern people, say Turks, Syrians, etc, don't identify as white but check it because, while not their identity, it's the closest fit. For me, black is the closest fit. If you doubt me google image people of luxor. And answer me this: If you had to classify these people would you say they're white, black, or Asian?

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby QContinuum » Thu Oct 11, 2018 5:28 pm

ZGergis wrote:
QContinuum wrote:In the U.S., Egyptians are not generally considered "black" any more than dark-skinned Indians, South Asians, Pacific Islanders, or Hispanics are considered "black."

Further, it seems obvious from your post that you don't actually identify as "black" in real life. You merely wish to inquire whether you can take advantage of the URM boost for purposes of law school admissions. Don't do it.


Respectfully I infer from your response that you don't know that much about Egypt. You are assuming that people indigenous to a huge country that borders Sudan in the South and the Med Sea in the north are homogeneous, and this is not true at all. Upper Egyptians, starting in Luxor, look more African than white and are genetically closer to Africans/Nubians than whites. The analogy with dark skinned Asians is completely irrelevant since we (southern Egyptians) are extremely close genetically to black East Africans (much closer than to Europeans), and dark skinned Asians are completely different.

From an academic study by A.R. Khales, summarizing genetic testing: "Lower Egyptian groups have tended to pool more with European and Mediterranean groups, while Upper Egyptians are biologically more similar to southern African groups. The geographic proximity of Lower Egyptians to the Mediterranean Sea and of Upper Egyptians to Nubia likely explains the phenotypic and genotypic differences between the two areas.["


Again, I reiterate: In the U.S., Egyptians are not generally considered "black". Any difference in appearance between northern and southern Egyptians is frankly completely irrelevant, as is which racial group Egyptians are genetically closer to.

ZGergis wrote:As to identity, you may have a point. I identify as Egyptian and certainly a person of color, not really black.


There you have it. You aren't black. You don't even self-identify as black. Don't falsely claim to be black.

ZGergis wrote:But I absolutely believe (and this isn't just my belief, it's an objective fact based on the genes and phenotypes of southern Egyptians) that black is the closest box to my race available. There is no "other" box on LSAC or any application so it seems like the best choice. To lump ALL North Africans into "white" is questionable enough for MIddle Eastern North Africans, but ludicrous for southern Egyptians like myself.


Why are you falsely asserting that you must claim to be either "white" or "black"?

ZGergis wrote:For me, black is the closest fit.


"Black" is absolutely not the closest fit. You are not black.

ZGergis wrote:If you doubt me google image people of luxor. And answer me this: If you had to classify these people would you say they're white, black, or Asian?


Newsflash, there are plenty of folks in the world who aren't white, black, or Asian.

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby ZGergis » Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:18 pm

Newsflash, there are plenty of folks in the world who aren't white, black, or Asian.[/quote]

Not on LSAC or on any application. The only boxes are white, black, Asian, Native American, and Hispanic. There is no "other" box, and "decline to respond" is recorded as white. So for those of us PoC who do not fall into these categories, we are forced to check a box into which we don't quite fit. (I notice you also didn't respond to my analogy about Saudis, etc checking white, even though they're not quite white and they don't identify as such, simply because it's the closest fit.)

You don't think it's relevant that I'm often (by about 50% of people) perceived as black? And that I'm genetically closer to black East Africans than any other group? I understand your point regarding self-identification but it's worth noting that many black applicants from Africa (e.g. Ethiopians) do not identify as black or African American either, instead identifying with their ethnic group, yet they take advantage of the system when it comes to affirmative action.

Also, would it change your mind about the honesty of this if I wrote a statement disclosing my situation and experience (which I was planning to do anyway)? I really think I have a case. I'm trying to be opportunistic but not trying to lie.

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby QContinuum » Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:52 pm

ZGergis wrote:Not on LSAC or on any application. The only boxes are white, black, Asian, Native American, and Hispanic. There is no "other" box, and "decline to respond" is recorded as white. So for those of us PoC who do not fall into these categories, we are forced to check a box into which we don't quite fit.


Okay, so I went to the trouble of digging up my aeons-old LSAC application. One, there is in fact an Other box. Two, the entire section is optional.

How LSAC administratively treats a refusal to respond is irrelevant. What's relevant is that you shouldn't lie. And falsely claiming to be black would be a lie.

ZGergis wrote:(I notice you also didn't respond to my analogy about Saudis, etc checking white, even though they're not quite white and they don't identify as such, simply because it's the closest fit.)


"White" is an amorphous and malleable category, at least as used in the U.S. "Black" is not.

I also disagree that Saudis necessarily don't identify as white. White-passing Middle Easterners may very well self-identify as white.

ZGergis wrote:You don't think it's relevant that I'm often (by about 50% of people) perceived as black?


Completely irrelevant. As you agreed previously, the fact that dark-skinned South Asians and Pacific Islanders can easily be misperceived as black does not actually make them black.

ZGergis wrote:And that I'm genetically closer to black East Africans than any other group?


That you're genetically closer to black Africans than white Europeans does not make you black.

ZGergis wrote:I understand your point regarding self-identification but it's worth noting that many black applicants from Africa (e.g. Ethiopians) do not identify as black or African American either, instead identifying with their ethnic group, yet they take advantage of the system when it comes to affirmative action.


No, this is flat-out wrong. That's like saying many Cherokees aren't Native Americans because they self-identify as Cherokees instead of "generic" Native Americans. Or that an Indian isn't Asian because he identifies as an Indian instead of a "generic" Asian.

ZGergis wrote:Also, would it change your mind about the honesty of this if I wrote a statement disclosing my situation and experience (which I was planning to do anyway)? I really think I have a case. I'm trying to be opportunistic but not trying to lie.


Sure, you can write a diversity statement arguing why you should be treated like a black applicant for purposes of affirmative action, even though you aren't black and don't self-identify as black. You can include your argument about genetics, and you can explain why you felt you had no choice but to check the "black" box, even though the entire section was optional. It'll go over like a lead balloon, but you can certainly try it.

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby ZGergis » Thu Oct 11, 2018 7:23 pm

Well they don't have an other box anymore. And no, "black" as a category has often been amorphous. For example Filipinos were defined as black in Apartheid South Africa. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_people

I think the best thing to do at this point is to write adcoms. I'll let you know what I did after my cycle is over. If I check the black box I will write an addendum describing my experience (very often perceived as black, etc), and describing the differences between southern and northern Egyptians. You can say it's stupid but it's not lying if I disclose everything. We will see how the adcoms treat it.

Race is a spectrum, a relative concept, not a binary; you're talking about categories like "black" as if there is a gene that makes you black, rather than it being a question of genetic distance, spectrums, and common sense. The fact that, to return to our Saudi example, one Saudi could say he's white and another could say he's not white shows the fuzziness of race at the margin. I think you are naive about the diversity of North Africa and think we all have the middle eastern look/genes. People in southern North Africa have a blend of African and Middle Eastern look.

Relatedly (and this is my last question for you, I promise): You think if Yacine Brahimi or Hassan Hakmoun (people in similar positions to me; from the southern part of North Africa) were to identify as black it would be the equivalent of Rachel Dolezal? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yacine_Brahimi https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hassan_Hakmoun. What about Imman Hamman? She is an Upper Egyptian model, identifies as black publicly, and gets no flack for it. https://jezebel.com/teen-vogue-august-c ... 1716370728

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby ZGergis » Thu Oct 11, 2018 7:45 pm

No, this is flat-out wrong. That's like saying many Cherokees aren't Native Americans because they self-identify as Cherokees instead of "generic" Native Americans. Or that an Indian isn't Asian because he identifies as an Indian instead of a "generic" Asian.


Actually the case of Indians as "Asian" proves my point about these categories being socially constructed and fuzzy. Very few actually identify as Asian and they are not genetically close to Chinese, etc at all. (They're actually a lot closer to white Europeans than East Asians.) As to black, even in the US non-sub-Saharan Africans have been subject to Jim Crow, including some North Africans (a population defined as "white" as a matter of federal law). Since there were so few North Africans, and the vast majority were from the more Mediterranean parts of Noth Africa, this history is not well known. Two books that address this subject (i.e. of non-sub-Saharan Africans who were deemed to be black for purposes of Jim Crow) are Colored Water: Dixie Through Egyptian Eyes, and a chapter about groups of foreign exchange students from Upper Egypt in the Jim Crow south in the anthology Race by Steven Gregory.

One famous case of this is the Upper Egyptian Sayyid Qutb, who while visiting the was denied entry to a movie house in the south because of what was perceived to be his race.

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby nixy » Thu Oct 11, 2018 8:26 pm

ZGergis wrote:Not on LSAC or on any application. The only boxes are white, black, Asian, Native American, and Hispanic. There is no "other" box, and "decline to respond" is recorded as white.

I don't think "decline to respond" is actually recorded as white - it's just not recorded as any of the other groups, either. Not getting a boost isn't the same thing as being recorded as white.

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby ZGergis » Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:21 am

This question has been settled by adcom. I have written to the deans of the T14 schools to which I'm applying describing my heritage as experience. All either said you can apply as such or refused to answer. I will apply as a diversity candidate with my addendum explaining my ancestry and experience.

And, by the way, one dean specifically mentioned that there are two Egyptian students in the BLSA at their school, presumably Upper Egyptians. I don't think this is uncommon. In fact I think that there are Middle Eastern looking North Africans who do this and get away with it at many schools. I am an African-looking person from southern North Africa and have a much stronger case, genetically and looks wise.

Thank you for your comments and criticism.

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby QContinuum » Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:40 am

ZGergis wrote:And, by the way, one dean specifically mentioned that there are two Egyptian students in the BLSA at their school, presumably Upper Egyptians. I don't think this is uncommon. In fact I think that there are Middle Eastern looking North Africans who do this and get away with it at many schools. I am an African-looking person from southern North Africa and have a much stronger case, genetically and looks wise.


Of course, you realize you're not in the same position as those Egyptian BLSA members, because you don't actually identify as black. You merely want to receive the URM bump for black applicants.

I'd also point out that your assumption that the Egyptian BLSA members are "getting away with it" may be a classic case of projection. You assume, without any evidence, that these Egyptians don't actually identify as black, and merely signed up for BLSA to support their claim for URM treatment. To the contrary, there are actual black Egyptians (just like there are black Irish and black British folks); these students very likely have one or more sub-Saharan African parents or grandparents. At my T13, a plurality of the British students were Asian, and members of the local APALSA chapter - they were certainly not "getting away" with anything.

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby ZGergis » Fri Oct 12, 2018 12:26 pm

QContinuum wrote:
ZGergis wrote:And, by the way, one dean specifically mentioned that there are two Egyptian students in the BLSA at their school, presumably Upper Egyptians. I don't think this is uncommon. In fact I think that there are Middle Eastern looking North Africans who do this and get away with it at many schools. I am an African-looking person from southern North Africa and have a much stronger case, genetically and looks wise.


Of course, you realize you're not in the same position as those Egyptian BLSA members, because you don't actually identify as black. You merely want to receive the URM bump for black applicants.

I'd also point out that your assumption that the Egyptian BLSA members are "getting away with it" may be a classic case of projection. You assume, without any evidence, that these Egyptians don't actually identify as black, and merely signed up for BLSA to support their claim for URM treatment. To the contrary, there are actual black Egyptians (just like there are black Irish and black British folks); these students very likely have one or more sub-Saharan African parents or grandparents. At my T13, a plurality of the British students were Asian, and members of the local APALSA chapter - they were certainly not "getting away" with anything.


All I know is I said Egyptian and specified southern Egypt, not sub-Saharan (while of course mentioning that I'm generally perceived as black, have been called slurs reserved for blacks, have black on my speeding tickets, etc, while also emphasizing that southern Egyptians face racism/colorism in EGypt), and the Dean said yes and referred me to Egyptians in BLSA at the school. BTW the sub-Saharan African minority living in Egypt do not identify as "black" (a Western construct) or "black Egyptian" but Nubian; they have a distinct history and identity from Egyptians. Similarly Ethiopians do not identify as black but Ethiopian. As to "black British," the category has traditionally extended beyond Africans. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_British

Racial categories are socially constructed and vary by time and place. It is cringy for me as a multi-ethnic person (Egyptian and American nationality) to read you write about these categories as if they are objective biological truths, applicable in the same way around the world, rather than crass attempts, with crass analogies in genetics, to classify people demographically.

You also fail to answer my question: Is supermodel Imman Hammam Rachel Dolezal? Are you about to challenge her racial identity and call her out for "lying" about being black? (She, like me, is from the southern part of North AFrica and has African features, not Middle Eastern (as north Africans from the Med coast look). She gave an interview about how she came to identify as black, based on how she was perceived, even though she is not sub-Saharan African and her family do not identify as black. She was met with cooing, not outrage. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imaan_Hammam

Why is she not being treated as Dolezal 2.0? Because people as a matter of common sense recognize that these things are fuzzy at the margins, and a North African from southern North Africa is on the margin of blackness (just as a north african from the med coast is at the margin of whiteness). As to lawyers, well they're a different kettle of fish.

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby QContinuum » Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:14 pm

ZGergis wrote:All I know is I said Egyptian and specified southern Egypt, not sub-Saharan (while of course mentioning that I'm generally perceived as black, have been called slurs reserved for blacks, have black on my speeding tickets, etc, while also emphasizing that southern Egyptians face racism/colorism in EGypt)


To be frank, that's being intentionally misleading. Check this out:

"All I know is I said Irish and specified southern Ireland, while of course mentioning that I'm generally perceived as black, have been called slurs reserved for blacks, have black on my speeding tickets, etc while also emphasizing that many Irish face racism/colorism in Ireland. I never mentioned sub-Saharan!"

Any reasonable person hearing that would assume the speaker was black Irish, likely biracial with sub-Saharan ancestry. It's the only logical interpretation. So of course the person hearing your "I'm an Egyptian and I've faced racism in Egypt" spiel would assume you have sub-Saharan ancestry.

ZGergis wrote:and the Dean said yes and referred me to Egyptians in BLSA at the school. BTW the sub-Saharan African minority living in Egypt do not identify as "black" (a Western construct) or "black Egyptian" but Nubian; they have a distinct history and identity from Egyptians. Similarly Ethiopians do not identify as black but Ethiopian. As to "black British," the category has traditionally extended beyond Africans. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_British


Again, there is both an objective and subjective element to "blackness" in the U.S. Both must be met. A white-passing person with a sub-Saharan African grandparent who identifies as white would not ethically be able to claim "blackness" to receive a URM boost, despite that person's undisputed sub-Saharan African ancestry. That's the subjective element. On the flip side, as you note, a black-passing person with no sub-Saharan African ancestry who identifies as black, like Rachel Dolezal, would not ethically be able to claim "blackness" either. That's the objective element.

You, of course, fail both elements. You don't identify as black (thus failing the subjective element), and you don't have sub-Saharan African ancestry (thus failing the objective element). This is not remotely a close case.

I'm fully aware other countries use different racial classifications/terminology/etc. That's irrelevant because we're talking specifically about "blackness" in the U.S.

ZGergis wrote:You also fail to answer my question: Is supermodel Imman Hammam Rachel Dolezal? Are you about to challenge her racial identity and call her out for "lying" about being black? (She, like me, is from the southern part of North AFrica and has African features, not Middle Eastern (as north Africans from the Med coast look). She gave an interview about how she came to identify as black, based on how she was perceived, even though she is not sub-Saharan African and her family do not identify as black. She was met with cooing, not outrage. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imaan_Hammam

Why is she not being treated as Dolezal 2.0? Because people as a matter of common sense recognize that these things are fuzzy at the margins, and a North African from southern North Africa is on the margin of blackness (just as a north african from the med coast is at the margin of whiteness). As to lawyers, well they're a different kettle of fish.


This is completely irrelevant because, unlike Imman, you do not identify as black.

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Re: Am I a URM???/Is___ race/circumstance considered URM??

Postby ZGergis » Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:41 pm

Did you read my post? I specifically said that "I specified [that I am] . . . not sub-Saharan." The one thing on which we agree, is that it would be misleading if I did clearly indicate to law schools that I am not sub-Saharan, in addition to saying I am from Southern Egypt. Their responses would be completely unenlightening if they thought I was sub-Saharan. But I specifically said I'm not sub-Saharan in the emails, and italicized it (my literal words "I am not sub-Saharan African"), while of course also emphasizing the facts that are in my favor (that I'm perceived as black, am from southern Egypt, and that Southern Egyptians look and are genetically closer to African than Middle Eastern).

Some of the deans still said yes, you can check AA, others did not give me a clear response. Others did not reply yet. I will write a diversity statement, in which I clearly state that I am not sub-Saharan, but describe my experience in the US and who the Upper Egyptians are. I believe I will get a boost based from at least some T14 schools on what the adcoms told me.

It is revealing that you are not answering my question about whether Immam Hammam, a North African (who has no known sub-Saharan ancestry) who identifies as black because she is perceived that way (as many, probably most people from the southern part of North Africa are), is like Rachel Dolezal. I assume you think the answer is "yes," based on your ridiculous notion that there is a biologically objective definition of blackness. But i would like to see your answer. Regardless, she has received little flak from this, including from black people. Her Wikipedia entry does go out of the way to note it as an interesting personal fact, that she identifies as black despite not being sub-Saharan African, but not a remotely scandalous one.

I mean really, google image Hammam. You think this woman's claim to be black is the same as Dolezal's? Regular people have more common sense than you do, with your 19th century "objective" race theories.

To be charitable maybe you assume all Egyptians have the Middle Eastern to Mediterranean look of Lower (northern) Egyptians, and that I'm gaming the system based on a technical definition of "African" (analogous to white south African). On the contrary: There is great diversity in north africa. Southern north Africans look very different: much darker and more African features than people from near the Med Sea. I know African American means black but honestly believe black is the closest box available on the form to my racial identity, even if no box truly fits my identity. Again, there are plenty of people who believe no box represents them, and merely check the closest fit (I know Arabs from the Levant who don't identify as white but check white, they're not "lying", they're checking the closest fit).



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