Ross: What makes you black? Native American? Or white?
Ralph Taylor of Lynnwood, Washington runs an insurance company, and he wants to do business with the government.
But government contracts will typically require hiring firms owned by disadvantaged individuals, which means minority firms sometimes get preference.
So on Monday, Ralph Taylor’s attorney appeared in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Seattle to argue that even though Mr. Taylor may look white, he is, in fact black.
Prompting one of the federal judges to ask: “What’s your best evidence that Mr. Taylor is black? I’ve looked at the evidence. It’s pretty thin.”
Mr. Taylor’s attorney said the evidence is a DNA test showing Taylor is 4 percent black and 6 percent Native American. Plus, there’s Mr. Taylor’s signed affidavit clearly stating he considers himself black.
Prompting another judge to ask: “What am I supposed to do with this birth certificate, where both parents are described in the birth certificate as Caucasian?”
The birth certificate? No problem, said Mr. Taylor’s attorney.
“Well, his birth certificate was changed,” the attorney noted. “It currently says black and Native American.”
The birth certificate was changed! And so, Mr. Taylor is asking the court to give him the right to present his case to a jury of his peers and let them decide what race he really is.