The Problem, and Possibility, in Asking People of Color ‘Where Are You From?’

Your curiosity does not take precedence over another person’s comfort

“Recently, a friend of mine asked me why people of color often get defensive when White people ask where they are from. She had a new friend whose heritage she was unsure of. She genuinely wanted to learn more about him and asked where he was from. Her question led to a disagreement, hurt feelings, and offense on both sides.