This one is kind of messy. There is a pretty popular activist named Shaun King who is prominent in the Black Lives Matter movement, among other things. He has claimed and continues to claim that he is biracial:


Activist and blogger Shaun King stated on Thursday that the man listed on his birth certificate, a white man, is not his biological father. King wrote in the Daily Kos that his mother, a white woman, conceived him with a black man.

However, many conservative news sources are claiming he lied about that, and is really just a white guy pretending to be biracial:


CNN’s Don Lemon told viewers that he had spoken to a family member who told him King is caucasian. Breitbart can today add to that confirmation a family member, possibly the same person Lemon spoke to, as well as two childhood acquaintances of King’s who all say he was never considered anything other than white.



Other sites just claim he “might” be White:

NY Daily News

They all seem to be taking from the same few sources though, and not necessarily unbiased ones.

What is the truth here?

  • 1
    I know nothing of this particular case, but I'm concerned that the question may be meaningless. There are cases of brothers and sisters with the same parents having different opinions on whether they are African-American or Caucasian. Given that, how could anyone prove anything?
    – Oddthinking
    Aug 21 '15 at 22:18
  • 1
    Maybe I should clarify... his claim is that his mom is white and his dad is black. The Conservative sources claim that his dad is white. This seems more easily provable? Although I guess it would still be tough to PROVE who his father is? Aug 21 '15 at 22:23
  • 2
    It isn't provable because race is a social construct - different people (and different cultures, and the same cultures over time) have different ideas of who is considered black. What are we going to do, subject him to the pencil test?
    – Sam I Am
    Aug 23 '15 at 12:09
  • 1
    I suppose the question could be changed to "Is his father the man on his birth certificate?" (He says no, con news sites say yes), but that doesn't seem very provable at this point either. Aug 24 '15 at 13:13
  • @SamIAm - if his father officially claims to be a certain race on the forms prompting one to state a race (e.g. US census), that could plausibly be considered as objective evidence. As would a first person statement from a parent.
    – user5341
    Sep 1 '15 at 15:37

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