Actress Kristen Davis, best known for playing Charlotte on the hit series Sex and The City, recently sat down with Jada Pinkett Smith and her mother, Adrienne Banfield Norris, for their Facebook Watch series Red Table Talk. In a segment titled "Should White People Adopt Black Kids?" the actress got candid about her fears of raising her two adopted children who are Black and how to deal with the racism and biases they have and will ultimately face.
Davis posted a clip from her segment on Instagram writing, "We discuss my ongoing journey to be the best mother I can be to my two children, and we try to address misconceptions about the adoption process." During their discussion, Davis addresses how she approaches raising two children who are African-American.
"Because my children are African-American, I feel like it's my duty and my job to do as much research, as much work, build as many bridges as possible because you are their community," the actress said. "I work at that every day trying to figure out how I can make sure they have access to the black community, that they're part of it, that they're not separated from it," she added.
View this post on Instagram
I had the honor of sitting down at the Red Table with @jadapinkettsmith and @adriennebanfieldnorris to discuss my experience and journey as an adoptive mother to two African-American children. Join us on Monday for the all-new episode of @redtabletalk. I have endless respect for Jada and her mom ( and @willowsmith 💜) for starting #rtt as a way to build bridges in our fractured world. We discuss my ongoing journey to be the best mother I can be to my two children , and we try to address misconceptions about the adoption process. I can only speak about my own journey, and each person’s story is different. But my wish was to have an honest dialogue with two powerful woman who are part of my children’s community. I cannot thank Jada and Gammy enough for their warmth and fearlessness , I admire them so much. It was such a special experience. I hope you tune in on Monday.
When asked about white privilege, Davis acknowledged that she could never truly understand what her children, 7-year-old daughter, Gemma, her 1-year-old son, will experience in their lives. “It’s one thing to be watching [racism] happening to other people and it’s another thing when it’s your child. And you haven’t personally been through it. It’s a big issue,” she added.
The actress shared that she has taken classes to educate herself in Black culture as well as classes on how to do Black hair, something she said how a more profound effect than she could have expected.
"What I learned is that it's a big thing and it has a whole long cultural history to it and you absolutely need to learn (how to do it) because it's a bonding situation," she said.
The mother of two said she began to experience racism directed at her daughter beginning when Gemma was just a baby. She stated she was "horrified" when people would say things like "won't she be a great basketball player" someday. After other similar instances, she approached her daughter's school to complain that her daughter was being excluded and treated differently from her peers only to be told, "We just see them all the same. We don’t see color," she told the women, exasperated.
"It was a very harsh moment of understanding,” she proclaimed. “I don’t know how every person of color has gotten through this. I don’t understand how you could take this every day."
"It lit a fire under me where I couldn’t be relaxed or casual," she continued. "But I will never be black, no matter how hard I try. That is the truth, and we have to accept it. And therefore I will never be able to say to Gemma, ‘I understand how you feel because this happened to me.’"
The mother of two explained that it made her fight even harder for her daughter. "That’s what’s painful and hard," she added. "It made me on a mission to find a place where she was exposed to everything. It made me on a mission to put her in situations where I was the only white person."
You can watch the entire Red Table Talk below.
Should White People Adopt Black Kids?
RTT takes on the controversial topic of interracial adoption. Jada & Gammy are joined by “Sex and The City's” Kristin Davis, a mother of two adopted black children, who's been forced to confront her own white privilege after seeing how differently her own Davis kids have been treated.Posted by Red Table Talk on Monday, July 8, 2019