"They'd say, 'Oh, you and this chink,' and they would make fun of him, or they'd make it seem like the relationship was a joke, it just wasn't how it would have been had it been a black guy in my opinion," says Auburn.
So, she wrote "My Baby" last year to put her boyfriend's mind at ease and tell the world that it doesn't matter.
King says writing a pop song that delves into the complexities of today's cross-cultural romances is tough to squeeze into a marketable pop song that lasts all of 3 minutes and 45 seconds.
So if pop music is a reflection of the issues of the day, why aren't we bobbing our heads and shaking our hips to more songs with lyrics about cross-cultural lovin'?
She says the only place to find interracial attraction is in music videos and concert performances, but the visuals represent interracial harmony through sexuality.
"That is where pop music around these issues," says Powers.
Each used the backlash against that Cheerios commercial with the mixed-race family as an example. "Americans feel more anxious about interracial romance than any other social reality and I think that's been true for the entire history of this country." Powers says that anxiety and desire across racial lines is one of fundamental subjects of pop culture in the U. "It's a subject that really resonates with American audiences," she says.
She points to Creole ballads from the early 19th century written by white men expressing forbidden desires in the voice of Creole women, and to the musicals . The growth of the Latino and Asian-American communities in the U. has added a lot of brown to what was once a black/white binary.