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RICHMOND, Virginia (AP) -- For years, Toinetta Jones played the dating game by her mom's strict rule.
Whitney and Roslyn Holcomb watch as their 3-year-old son, Luke, plays.
"Mom always told me, 'Don't you ever bring a white man home,"' recalled Jones, echoing an edict issued by many Southern, black mothers.
But at 37, the Alexandria divorcee has shifted to dating "anyone who asks me out," regardless of race.
"I don't sit around dreaming about the perfect black man I'm going to marry," Jones said.
Black women around the country also are reconsidering deep-seated reservations toward interracial relationships, reservations rooted in America's history of slavery and segregation.
They're taking cues from their favorite stars -- from actress Shar Jackson to tennis pro Venus Williams -- as well as support blogs, how-to books and interracially themed novels telling them it's OK to "date out."
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It comes as statistics suggest American black women are among the least likely to marry.
You know what they say: ‘once you go white, you’re always uptight.’ No. Or is it ‘once you go Caucasian you go back with a little persuasion’? That’s probably wrong. There are lots of sociological reasons for this to take place and the article does a great job of explaining them. It skips right past the disproportionate number of young, black men in jail. All these things add up. It’s amazing that 75% of black-white relationships in America feature a black man and a white woman. It’s hard to believe that the stigma of white women dating black men subsided (some) before that of white men dating black women. To be fair, the black man-white woman dynamic was ushered in by Sidney Poitier in Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner. The flip side was handled with a little less aplomb by Ashton Kutcher in a shabby remake called Guess Who. We’re pretty psyched about this trend. Demolishing racial barriers is good. Maybe there are a handful of Imans out there looking for their David Bowies.