You know, I've never understood why people call themselves half-X. I'm sure that when people say they're half-Jewish or half-Chinese or whatever, they mean that one of their parents is Jewish, Chinese, Whatever. A verbal shorthand, so to speak. But why not say, "My Mom/Dad is [fill in the blank]."
How is it possible to have half a culture? Do you also have half a language? Half a religion (OK, I know this is America, but I'm saying . . . )? Half a history? Half a tradition? If someone identifies as half-Jewish, when they encounter anti-Semitism, do they get half as offended? What about someone who is half-POC? Does racism affect that person half as much?
It's certainly not about genetics. Case in point: Halle Berry. Her mother is White, but she identifies as Black. Another case in point: the "passing" phenomenon (Google it). Here's another one: Elrond.
I guess it's easy to be lazy about this with ethnicity. After all, you don't hear a lot of people calling themselves half-gay if one of their parents is homosexual. Might be a little too hot in that kitchen, I suppose.
Another thorny issue about half-identity is this: why call attention to one half instead of the other? What do we really say when we accentuate one half over the other? Are we saying one is normal and the other abnormal? Are we saying one is better than the other? What's the real message behind a half-identity?
I guess what I want to understand is: why do people feel the need to be half-anything if they can be fully both, or completely one or the other?