Is a dating site by and for white people racist? The new site ‘White People Meet’ has come under fire for being an insular community, but its founder assures us that he isn’t racist because he dated a black woman…once.
“The last thing in the world I am is racist. I dated a black woman once,” 53-year-old Sam Russell tells the Washington Post. “I helped raise a young black man … I just believe it’s hypocrisy to say ‘one group can do this, but another can’t.'” Russell is likely referring to Black People Meet, an online dating site aimed at black singles.
The site has over 1,000 current members. Russell says that anyone over 18 may join, regardless of race or ethnicity. “If you’re a black man who prefers to date white women, this might be a good option,” he said. The site costs $15 a month to message other members and the site’s terms of service prohibits messages that “promote racism, bigotry, [or] hatred.”
Online dating is notoriously segregated. Research from OkCupid shows that most people prefer to date within their own race, and black and Asian daters receive the least amount of interest.
Several niche dating options based upon race and ethnicity exist, like SoulSwipe for black singles or Arab Lounge for Muslim daters. When asked about whether white people already have the advantage in online dating, Russell seems oblivious. “It’s our right to have this business,” he tells the Washington Post. “If we want equal rights in this country, it has to be equal rights for everybody.”