Recently, black model Jazzma Kendrick broke up with her boyfriend, retired Italian soccer player, Christian Vieri, for spewing racist remarks. She publicized the incident in the following tweets:
At first, I applauded her for taking a respectable, zero-tolerance stance against racism in an interracial relationship. However, she returned to her boyfriend days later.
As a black woman who is in an interracial marriage, I cannot see myself having tolerated a racist comment from my husband while we were dating. It would have been a deal breaker because that kind of mentality is ingrained and does not change overnight. It just doesn’t. If anything, my husband shut down racist comments during our dating stage. I specifically remember one time we were out for lunch when he spoke up to some individuals who were happily discussing racist cartoons from back in the day.
On the other hand, every relationship is different — including every interracial relationship. Some women stand by the phrase “once a cheater, always a cheater”. Others are able to forgive and overcome one instance of infidelity. For some, one verbal insult from a partner is a deal breaker. For others, if the partner promises to never utter such a word(s) again, then the relationship goes on.
I will admit that I’ve stayed in (non-interracial) relationships where I was called “out of my name”. Those relationships didn’t work out, and perhaps the insults were indicators of the increasing level of disrespect that caused them to fizzle. So, perhaps Kendrick has opened the door to Vieri disrespecting her further? Or maybe, he will truly change for the better? Only they know.