I've been really curious about my genetic breakdown for a couple of years now , having the opportunity to find out exactly who am with 23andme.com has been really exciting. Some results were expected and others not so much. 23andMe, Inc. is the leading personal genetics company.
It wasn't until the whole Dominican immigration reform debacle with Haitians, that I became increasingly interested in knowing my ancestral composition. As with most trending topics and debates people take to social media to share information that may or may not be true. One meme that was floating around said something along the lines of "news flash Dominicans you are black".
This made me upset because not all Dominicans identify as black and forcing them to do so robs them of their culture and heritage. I've never thought of myself as "just black". You'll hear me say over and over again that black is an institutionalized oppression system, its racism and segregation. My father taught me early on that we were of British descent and that his grandfather emigrated from St. Maarten, F.W.I. to the Dominican Republic. I don't want to be labeled or classified as "just black" when I know I am more than just a color system.
Being told "you're just black" takes away my history and depreciates my ancestry. Yes, I have African DNA but I am not African-American, I'm Dominican. I have always felt that I could Identify more with the customs, culture and traditions of Africans because there are obviously very strong African roots in the Dominican Republic. Because of this strong sense of "I am not just black" I wanted to know who I truly was.
I knew I would be mixed with African but had no idea what else I was comprised of, 23andme helped me with that. Their mission is to help people access, understand and benefit from the human genome. By tapping into advances in DNA analysis and offering education, tools, and expertise, at 23andMe they want to help others take a bold, informed step toward self-knowledge.
I will say right off bat that I assumed I would be more European than African only because my mother has always said that her father was supposed to be from Spain and her grandfather was supposedly French. Wrong, It looks like she too may need a DNA test lol.
As you can see I am 50.5% Sub-Saharan Africa, 44.8% European, 3% East Asian/Native American, 0.8% Middle Eastern, and the rest is unassigned. For me it gets pretty trippy seeing the European breakdown because again, I'm thinking my grandfather is Spanish, my great grandfather is French and my paternal great grandfather is supposed to be from Sint Maarten, F.W.I . Turns out Iberian is only 6.1% and French? Well that's a big old zero, lol!
Another woah moment is seeing how little British blood I carry considering my Father thought his great grandfather emigrated from there. My other woah moment was seeing Native American, although I know Native Indios Tainos inhabited La EspañolaI didn't think I would still carry any of that blood. It's pretty awesome actually, so is that 1% Ashkenazic Jew. Maybe "race" inquiries, polls and the Census surveys should drop white and black to change it to all 7 continents cause I'm clearly African decent and there's no box for that.
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I'M ALICIA GIBBS
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