[UPDATED] White woman says she feels Filipino, insists she's "transracial"

But that's not how this shit works.

This is a joke, right? Or maybe some kind of performance art? A Florida woman claims that although she was born white, deep down inside she feels Filipino, and now identifies as "transracial."

A Tampa woman calling herself "Ja Du," who was born white, tells WTSP that she now considers herself Filipino. She insists that she is transracial -- someone born one race, but identifies with another.

"Whenever I'm around the music, around the food, I feel like I'm in my own skin," Ja Du says. "I'd watch the History Channel sometimes for hours you know whenever it came to that and you know nothing else intrigued me more but things about Filipino culture."

No, Ja Du. No.

First of all, this is an incorrect and highly problematic co-option of the term "transracial."

Also, that's not how this shit works.

You can eat at a Filipino restaurant. You can attend all the Filipino culture festivals you want. You can watch the History Channel, the Travel Channel, and fucking Channel 18 all day long. She even drives around the hood in a damn Tuk Tuk. None of that stuff makes you Filipino, Ja Du. Not even a little.

Can you really just assume another ethnic identity because it "intrigues" you? This is leaping over appreciation and appropriation into a whole other category of white nonsense. But Ja Du, who is the founder of a "transracialism" support group on Facebook, insists this is not about white privilege.

"I think if you're unhappy with who you are and you change yourself for the better and that makes you happy, go for it," Ja Du says. "I would never say it was a privilege to be unhappy with yourself all the time."

Ja Du says she has yet to come out to her family as Filipino, because she's worried they'll laugh at her.

More here: 'Transracial' man born white feels like he is Filipino

UPDATE: This post has been updated to reflect the subject's transgender female identity. The original reporting by WTSP used "man" and male pronouns, despite making reference to Ja Du's transsexuality, so I assumed that's how she preferred to be identified. Since then, reporter Garin Flowers (and several other bloggers) have confirmed that Ja Du is transgender and identifies as "she," so I've made the appropriate edits. But I maintain that this "transracial" nonsense is still some special kind of bullshit.

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