Ethnic names deserve the value they entail

Mia Fox, Sports Editor

Ethnic people are given their biological names for a reason, whether it has an important meaning, a family name, or simply sounds appealing in their native language. Ethnic names intentionally convey cultural, familial, personal, and historical connections.

When people immigrate to the United States sometimes they choose to change their name to a common American name such as Mary or James. 

Some people decide not to fully change their name but choose to change the pronunciation instead. These changes in pronunciation can involve not rolling the “R’s”, getting rid of accents or simply anglicizing their name. 

According to a study done by The National Bureau of Economic Research, “Job applicants with white names needed to send about 10 resumes to get one callback; those with African-American names needed to send around 15 resumes to get one callback.”

People’s names may be part of their identity but they don’t define them as a person or their capabilities. Someone’s name should never be the reason why someone chooses not to hire them for a job when they are just as qualified as any other candidate. 

This is part of the reason people with ethnic names feel the need to hide their identity with a common caucasian name or a simplified version of their real name. 

Mispronouncing names is completely understandable but not taking the effort to pronounce them correctly in the future and respecting the correct pronunciation is inadequate. Asking if you can call someone by a different name because the pronunciation is too “difficult” is also disrespectful or asking them if there is an easier name they can go by. Trying to get the pronunciation correctly over time with trial and error is more appreciated than choosing not to learn the proper elocution of their name. 

Intentionally mispronouncing or mocking one’s name is a common form of casual racism that supports past western ideals. Whether it’s intended that way it is still a form of racism and disrespect. This is why some people feel the severe pressure by society to sacrifice their authentic nature so they can be seen as more than an exile. 

Without your name, there is no basis for identity. The identity is yours to create and discover and it deserves to be respected by others.