A co-worker and I just discussed whether "brown people" (for people with Latin American origin or perhaps Middle-Eastern origin?) is acceptable in the US, as I read this phrasing more often now, e.g. in this source, attributed to an ACLU lawyer:
At a time when corporations are finally being held accountable for their roles in enabling mass incarceration, it is encouraging to see a company as powerful as Google cutting ties with businesses that profit from incarcerating poor Black and brown people... [...]
Said co-worker also challenged my observation that "black" is okay. In his view, all such descriptors should be based on geographical origin of the person instead of based on skin color. My understanding was that geographical descriptors were not as mainstream anymore, since they also led to utter inaccuracies like "Caucasian" for white people.
So, previously I would have binned the terms the following way:
- "white person" - ok to use if you must
- "black person" - ok to use if you must
- "brown person" - totally unsure about this
- "red person"/"yellow person" - not ok, because perceived as clearly racist
Which of these are actually accepted?
(I am white, if that helps.)