Woman Whose Mother Passed As White Introduces Her Mixed-Race Family Members | Megyn Kelly TODAY


[ APPLAUSE ]>>>WELCOME BACK, EVERYONE. WE’RE HERE WITH GAIL LUKASIK, WHO HAS RECENTLY DISCOVERED SHE HAS A WHOLE NEW FAMILY AFTER UNCOVERING HER MOTHER’S SECRET. HER MOTHER WAS LIVING AS A WHITE WOMAN BUT WAS MIXED RACE. JOINING US NOW, GAIL’S HALF-UNCLE, AZEMAR FREDRIC AND STEPHANIE FREDRIC. AT THE CRUX OF THE INVESTIGATION WAS A SEARCH FOR HER MOM’S DAD, AZEMAR. YOUR MOM’S MOM WAS IN YOUR LIFE. AND SHE LOOKED WHITE. BUT YOUR MOM’S DAD WAS NOT IN YOU DIDN’T KNOW MUCH ABOUT HIM. BUT YOU ARE THAT MAN’S SON. YOUR GRANDAD WAS AZEMAR. HE HAD A SECOND FAMILY AFTER THE FAMILY HE STARTED WITH GAIL’S MOM. AND THERE WERE FIVE KIDS. YOU’RE ONE OF THEM. AND, STEPHANIE, YOU’RE AZEMAR’S DAUGHTER.>>CORRECT. THAT’S VERY GOOD.>>THAT TOOK A LOT OF HOMEWORK. AZEMAR, WHAT DID YOU BELIEVE IN TERMS OF YOUR DAD’S RACE AND YOUR RACE?>>WE LIVED IN THE MOSTLY ITALIAN NEIGHBORHOOD. THERE WAS ONE ASIAN MAN AND IT WAS OUR FAMILY. WE DIDN’T KNOW THE DIFFERENCE.>>WAS YOUR DAD, DID YOU THINK HE WAS BLACK? HOW DID HE APPEAR TO YOU?>>I KNEW HIM AS DAD.>>SO, RACE WASN’T EVEN AN ISSUE. ONE OF THE MOST BIZARRE THINGS OF THIS WHOLE STORY, AS GAIL IS WRITING THIS BOOK, STEPHANIE IS WORKING ON A DOCUMENTARY CALLED –>>”LIGHT GIRLS.”>>HOW LIGHT SKIN.>>HOW IN AMERICA, LIGHT SKIN WAS PREFERRED OVER DARK SKIN. AND I KNEW I HAD RACIAL PASSING IN MY FAMILY. MY DAD’S FAMILY, LOVE THEM. BUT THEY HELD A LOT OF SECRETS. WE DIDN’T KNOW, YOU KNOW, PEOPLE ASK YOU ALL THE TIME. WHAT ARE YOU GUYS?>>YEAH.>>YOU LOOK AT THE FAMILY. YOU SEE THE PICTURE, WE DIDN’T KNOW. QUITE FRANKLY, WE’RE YOUNG, WE DIDN’T CARE. THIS IS DAD. YOU KNOW? LOVE HIM.>>FORTUNATE THING ABOUT OUR SOCIETY, IT MAKES YOU KNOW, RIGHT?>>EXACTLY.>>THAT’S WHY YOUR MOM MADE THE CHOICE SHE DID. AND ONE OF THE TAKEAWAYS OF THIS BOOK, IS THAT RACE IS A SOCIAL CONSTRUCT.>>THAT WAS MY TAKEAWAY.>>EXPLAIN THAT.>>HERE’S THE BEST WAY FOR ME TO EXPLAIN IT. I GIVE A LOT OF PRESENTATIONS AND PEOPLE SAY, HOW DO YOU IDENTIFY NOW THAT YOU KNOW OF YOUR BACKGROUND? I SAY, I IDENTIFY, I’M A WHITE WOMAN AS A MIXED RACE HERITAGE. I WAS SOCIALIZED AS A WHITE WOMAN. I GREW UP IN A WHITE NEIGHBORHOOD AND THAT’S WHAT I KNOW. THAT’S MY UPBRINGING. THAT’S A SOCIAL CONSTRUCT IN MY MIND.>>WHEN A FRIEND OF YOURS SAW GAIL ON “GENEALOGY ROAD SHOW.” DID THEY KNOW SHE MIGHT HAVE A CONNECTION TO YOU? HOW DID YOU SAY I’M GOING TO SEND GAIL AN E-MAIL?>>OUR “LIGHT GIRLS” DOCUMENTARY HAD JUST AIRED ON OWN. MY FRIEND CALLS. AND I THOUGHT SHE WAS CALLING TO SAY, HEY, STEPH, GREAT DOC. SHE CAREFULLY LEADS ME DOWN THE ROAD, TALKING ABOUT HER FAMILY AND WANTING TO KNOW HER FAMILY HISTORY. BY THE WAY, THERE WAS THIS WOMAN ON TELEVISION LAST NIGHT. I WAS JUST FLIPPING THROUGH CHANNELS. AND SHE MENTIONED YOUR FATHER’S NAME. SHE IS LOOKING FOR HER FAMILY IN NEW ORLEANS. AND SHE SAID, STEPHANIE, SHE’S A WHITE WOMAN. AND I SAID, WELL, YOU KNOW, THAT’S POSSIBLE. AND I THOUGHT, WHAT THE HECK HAS DAD DONE? I SAID, I AM GOING TO HAVE TO, YOU KNOW, BUFFER THIS FOR MY MOTHER WHO WAS SICK AT THE TIME. I SAID, LET ME GET IN FRONT OF THIS. AND I HURRIEDLY TRIED TO FIND THE DOCUMENTARY AND WATCH IT. I WATCHED IT AND SAID, YEAH, SHE’S FAMILY. I SAW THE PICTURE OF HER MOTHER. AND I SAID, SHE LOOKS JUST LIKE MY FATHER’S FAMILY. OF COURSE. WE SHARE THE SAME GRANDFATHER.>>AND GAIL HAD REVELATIONS IN HER OWN LIFE, TOO, WHERE HER DAUGHTER LOOKS MORE LIKE YOU. BUT YOUR SON WAS MORE OLIVE COMPLEXI COMPLEXION.>>YES.>>AND YOUR HUSBAND IS VERY FAIR, TOO. YOU HAD AHA MOMENTS, TOO.>>MY SON FAVORS MY MOTHER. AND SHE USED TO SAY, HE’S MY FAVORITE BECAUSE HE LOOKS LIKE ME. AND NOBODY ELSE LOOKS LIKE ME. SO, YEAH. ABSOLUTELY.>>THE BOOK IS FASCINATING. AND IT’S A COMMENT NOT JUST ON GAIL’S FAMILY AND THE SECRET-KEEPING BUT ON OUR SOCIETY AND ITS HISTORY WHEN IT COMES TO RACE. THANK YOU FOR TELLING THE STORY. ALL OF YOU.>>THANK YOU.>>AGAIN, THE BOOK IS CALLED

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