- Gail had always thought her mom was white
- She was surprised to discover she was born into a black family
- However, her mom kept it a secret and lived as a white woman
A US woman was surprised to discover that her mother married a racist white man and lived her entire life as a white woman despite being born into a black family.
Briefly.co.za gathered that Gail Lukasik made the discovery in 1995 while scrolling through the 1900 Louisiana census records.
Her mother's father, Azemar Frederic, and his family were designated as black. When Gail raised this with her mother, Alvera Frederic, she made her promise never to reveal the secret.
Speaking during a TV interview on Megyn Kelly Today, Gail said:
She looked at me and she said, ‘You have to promise me you will never tell anyone until after I die … because how will I hold my head up with my friends if they know.
She kept her promise until her mom passed away in 2014. Subsequently, she wished to know why Alvera moved from her family in New Orleans and married a racist white man — Gail's father.
READ ALSO: Who are the Ramaphosas?
Gail travelled to New Orleans to meet her mother's family, whose members had varying shades of skin colour ranging from dark ebony to her mother's pale white.
After interacting with the family, she explained what might have led to her mother's decision to pass off as white:
In escaping the Jim Crow south, coming north and marrying my white father, she must have thought gaining white privilege was worth the price of losing family ties and her authentic self.
Regarding her own identity, Gail said she identifies as white and acknowledges that she has benefitted from "white privilege." She explained:
I identify as a white woman with a mixed race heritage because I was socialised as a white woman. I grew up in a white neighborhood and that’s what I know and that’s my upbringing. So [race is] a social construct in my mind.
Do you have a story to share with us? Inbox us on our Facebook page and we could feature your story.