Ask us: why do newspaper articles capitalize black people but not white people? – Salisbury Post

Editor’s note: Ask Us is a weekly feature published online on Mondays and in print on Tuesdays. We’ll be looking to answer your questions about items or trends in Rowan County. Have a question? Email it to [email protected]

SALISBURY – A reader sent in a question regarding capitalization of black in Associated Press style while white is lowercase.

It was pointed out that the curiosity came from a perspective of grammatical consistency and if that is explained in the AP stylebook.

On June 19, 2020, the Associated Press announced that it would capitalize black when used in race, ethnicity, and culture following protests over the death of George Floyd. This change was updated in the 55th edition of its stylebook.

An article on the organization’s website, “Explain AP style in black and white“explained the change, which said that” the style of AP is now to capitalize on black in a racial, ethnic or cultural sense, conveying an essential and shared sense of history, identity and culture. community among people who identify as black, including those in the African diaspora. and in Africa.

The Associated Press further explains that the decision aligns with the long-standing capitalization of distinct racial and ethnic identifiers such as Latino, Asian American and Native American. Additionally, he said white individuals did not share the same experience of discrimination because of their skin color, nor the same history and culture.

The 55th edition of the AP Stylebook advises when to use the terms when identifying people’s race, as the words should not be used as singular nouns, but rather as adjectives with examples such as Black, whites, black teachers and white students. Plural nouns such as Blacks and Whites are acceptable for sentence construction and space or where clearly relevant.