Upon recently renewing my concealed carry permit I was denied by Fairfax County because I wrote “American” in the space for Race. The response from the county was that American was a nationality, not a race. Hence the form was incomplete and my permit was denied.
Being none too politically active, but with a Thoreauian disdain for purposeless government bureaucracy I generally put American, if anything at all, on forms requesting I define my race. My line of reasoning being that my family goes back at least five generations being born in America. If my lineage continues to be born here for the next 1,000 years, when will they be considered American as opposed to European American, White, Caucasoid, etc. I have never been within 3,000 miles of the Caucasus Mountain range.
Additionally, all that race stuff is unnecessary. We should all just be Americans. I am not much on fighting discrimination, mostly because I generally refrain from practicing it (Except for the Arabs. They are currently held in extreme disfavor.) There are so many other good reasons to dislike others. If the Commonwealth wanted to know the color of my skin, why don't they just put that on the form? I have no problem selecting the Crayola Peach or bleached out beige checkbox. Race doesn't even appear on the permit. It all just seems a bit capricious.
Most dictionaries will include a definition of race to include something like a group of persons related by common descent or heredity or any people united by common history, language, cultural traits, etc . That kind of sounds like American should work.
Concealed Carry Permit Form SP-248, http://www.vsp.state.va.us/downloads/SP-248_revised_07-1-2006.pdf
, does not provide a checkbox or list of “races” to choose from. A free text search of the Commonwealth code does not define what is considered an approved race. So what is the problem with putting American? What is the legal basis for declaring American is not a race if it is not defined in the the Commonwealth code? You would think that I could define myself however I wanted with that First Amendment and all.
In the end I caved to the man, because I wanted to have the ability to defend myself more then my need to change a form I have to fill out once every five years.
But, to others who do not wish to put a “traditional” race, MIXED and UNKNOWN will also work just as well.
Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 01/28/2008 08:53PM by Rowsdower.