Racial preferences in dating and why it’s racist


Elizabeth Correa

Racial preferences stem from internalized racism.

There are many reasons why someone does not want to date another person they meet, whether it’s because of personality, situations, or other reasons, but the color of a person’s skin should not be a valid reason. Racial preferences shockingly play a big role on whether someone would choose to date them or not, even during our most recent generation.

I posted a poll on my Instagram and the question I asked was, “Is it racist to have a racial preference when dating?” and the results came out to 56% of the people saying it wasn’t racist and only 44% of the people saying it was racist. This poll goes to prove how normalized it is to openly share your racial preference. These results showed people’s ignorance and disregard to this racial exclusionary issue. 

Racial preferences are not only non inclusive but also morally problematic. Sometimes, they may get to the point where someone acts on their exclusionary behavior because of how engrossed they are towards their own pleasure. Many statements to defend why they have a racial preference are just masking their prejudice under a ‘preference.’ Some statements I have heard are, “I don’t date Latinas, they’re crazy,” “I don’t find black women attractive but that’s just my preference,” “I have a fetish for Asian women,” and so on and so on. The definition of prejudice is a feeling of unfair dislike directed against an individual or a group because of some characteristic. Notice how this relates to a racial ‘preference’ and how it is putting certain races over others. This would likely lead to self-esteem issues and sexual rejection of one’s race. 

According to Census.gov,  there are only 10.2% interracial couples from 2012 through 2016. Although this is an improvement, it’s still not a lot. On some online dating sites, there’s an option to choose a race you prefer and ones you don’t, so it won’t come up on your page. This is racially exclusionary and shows people’s internalized racist color desires. 

Troy High School junior, Julio Cayton speaks about his interracial relationship with him being Asian and his girlfriend Latina. 

“No, I don’t believe in racial preferences, I believe people can find their true love no matter skin color. I love my girlfriend for her soul and personality,” Cayton stated.

When asked about what racial preferences stem from, Cayton said, “I think they’re based on color, stereotypes, and even culture.” 

When asked about his interracial relationship and if he feels comfortable being in public, he stated, “Sometimes, there’s a lot of judgmental people out there who believe in stupid standards and we sometimes get weird looks when we’re out especially during the pandemic.” 

Racial preferences are based on stereotypes. Many don’t date a certain race because of how they’re known to “act,” which is basing one person off a negative stereotype. Hearing one’s racial preference goes to show their internalized racism and even subconscious racism. Liking one individual race is a race fetish which is not only weird but scary for many minorities because then they may be a target for the weird race fetish people. 

Valley High School sophomore Jasmine Moralez speaks out about racial preferences.

“I do not have a racial preference because I feel like it is just sexualizing a race,” she said.

After being asked what racial preferences are based on and what they root from, Moralez said, “I think it’s based on stereotypical features and not liking a race because of that and they probably root from online or from families being taught not to date a certain race.” 

Racial preferences based on stereotypes are still very much around and people go out of their way to defend their prejudiced ways. Many people in our community as well believe in racial preferences shown from my poll which was very disappointing. Racial preferences are not normal and they show people’s internalized racism. There is absolutely no reason to like and dislike people based on their race simply because it’s “not what you’re attracted to.”