December 9, 2005

Racial Gestalt: Believing Is Seeing

Here's a picture of Rob Schneider, the low rent comic actor, formerly of Saturday Night Live, who starred in "Deuce Bigalow, Male Gigolo" and has played in a lot of his friend Adam Sandler's hit movies. He's Jewish, right? Nobody ever had any doubts about it.

And, he is Jewish ..., but only on his father's side.

Schneider's mother, I just found out after 15 years of assuming he is the standard-issue 100% Jewish comedian, is one half Filipino. Take a look at his picture again. Doesn't it suddenly snap into focus that he's obviously one quarter Filipino?

This snapping into focus can happen when looking at people who turn out to have a more complex racial background than you assumed. I call this "racial gestalt," after the old trick picture that gestalt therapists use to show people that believing is seeing.

Schneider persuasively played a native Hawaiian in the the Adam Sandler - Drew Barrymore romantic comedy "Fifty First Dates," and I was so convinced that he was 100% Jewish that I thought to myself, boy, he's actually a better actor than I always thought.

My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer

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