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Thursday, May 4, 2017

Biracial UT pageant winner "not enough melanin"

Rachael Malonson, who is biracial, was the winner of the Miss Black University of Texas, an event hosted by Kappa Alpha Psi, a predominantly black fraternity that prides itself on having high levels of melanin in the epidermis of its members.

Unfortunately for Ms. Malonson (whose name is hauntingly similar to the word 'melanin') high-level melanin enthusiasts attacked her on anti-social media saying that she's "not black enough."

Melanin is a broad term for the natural pigments found in most organisms and is produced by the oxidation of tyrosine, an amino acid, followed by polymerization, or the process of reacting monomer molecules together in a chemical reaction to form polymer chains. Yadda, yadda.

The pigment is produced in a group of cells known as melanocytes.

There are three basic types of melanin: eumelanin, which is the most common;  pheomelanin, which contains a cysteine red polymer of benzothiazine that are largely responsible for red hair and other pigmentation; and neuromelanin, which is found in the brain, but its function is not fully known. 

Melanin is a great absorber of sunlight; the pigment is capable of dissipating over 99.9% of absorbed UV radiation and thought to protect skin cells from UVB radiation damage and is therefore thought to reduce the risk of skin cancers, but there needs more research for clarification on this issue.

The jury is still out on the issue of what levels of melanin make a person "black enough." 

In a Facebook post after she won, Malonson admitted to initial reluctance in taking part in the pageant because of the mixed [high and low] melanin levels of her parents.

A nasty Twitter tweeter with possibly higher levels of melanin tweeted this on May 3, 2017: 
"Ok so I did my creeping on ol girl who won that black pageant ... she shouldn't have won. --Chocolatey Socrates (@ShawtiBroCu_)"
Another genius with melanin levels that would make BLM proud tweeted on the same day:
"Let me ask a better question ... is she black? --D'Antrese (@dantreselove)" 
The irony is in the Twitter handle 'dantreslove'.

Ms. Malonson wrote: "I challenged myself by vulnerably expressing obstacles I face as a biracial woman and was not going to leave the state without letting others know that my blessings and strength are in Christ alone."

When learning she had been accepted to participate in the pageant she tweeted on May 2, 2017:
"Wow. It's really beautiful to see how the black community at UT will come together and stand up for their brothers and sisters. --Rachael Malonson (@RachaelMalonson)"
Then:
"A time that was supposed to make me feel worthless turned into a beautiful reminder that I have true brothers and sisters at UT"
It was only after she was crowned that the angry Twitter trolls attacked her and said that she shouldn't have won the pageant because she didn't identify as African American.

Perhaps Rachel Dolezal should have won because she does identify as being black.

Malonson is a broadcasting and journalism student at the University of Texas. 

"I remember I felt so insecure because people didn't understand who I was by my look," she said. "I'm confident in it now and see it as a unique trait where I'm able to teach people that not every black person (and) not every mixed person looks the same way."

She obviously has more class in her lesser level of melanin than the students with the higher levels who have attacked her for being who she is.

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