I love your work! This is great.
I must say, though, that as a mostly Middle Eastern (a little Far East Asian also) person, I feel very brown and not at all white. I have no memory of being white and only remember being brown since memory. I've always been treated as an outsider in that regard so have a lot of difficulty rectifying the government's conclusion about my race (that is, white people deciding) with my lived experience. I think the mostly white government uses POC in conditional manners to help maintain the current WS system, and keeps ME white to keep the official numbers high while still calling us terrorists and other Arab slurs behind our backs.
I remember the Arab American Institute lobbying for a change in the census in the early 80's, when I was in high school, for the same reasons: that most ME peoples are not treated white and many don't feel it. I couldn't fill out a census form during those years because the options were sometimes only black or white. I filled the other category. I started filling in Asian not only because I am partly Asian, but because other ME people I knew who were only ME didn't have any other box to fill, and their Middle Eastern countries of origin were in Asia. This attempt to get another category other than white has been going on for at least 35-40 years, because so many ME people don't feel white.
A lot of this is against the backdrop of foreign wars so that certain periods of time (the Iran hostage crisis was bad; and 9/11, for example) become intensely anti-Arab. It is really hard to rectify some of what happened during that time--outright attacks against ME people in the street, for example, or 14 year old girls being put in jail for being ‘terrorists’--with being white. I think that one of the reason Muslims are discriminated against is that they are conflated with the Arab world. I've experienced anti-Arab racism my entire life.
There are ME people I know who will grasp 'whiteness' if they can, and typically these will embrace the entire attitude as well as the appearance. I believe there is high risk for non-Black POC's to think this way, because it embraces white supremacy. It's our job as nonBlack POC"s to admit the anti-Blackness of white supremacy and to make sure we do our best (as best as possible given the permeation) not to participate even while admitting that we all have some degree of racism. NonBlack POCs really need to do better, as well as white people.
I was so HAPPY when Rashida Tlaib called herself a person of color! Finally, someone in a position of power! My daughters have a white father and identify as people of color, and I am so happy that they aren't ashamed of this. Rashida Tlaib finally said what I'd been feeling my entire life! I showed this portion of the news to my daughters several times.
If you've read this far, thanks for reading.
Your work is great! I look forward to your stories.