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Michigan mom writes children's books celebrating differences

Michigan mom writes children's books celebrating differences
Michigan mom writes children's books celebrating differences 03:29

(CBS DETROIT) - LaTashia Perry of Grand Blanc has caused a few temper tantrums after releasing books she says empower children of color to celebrate their differences. 

It all started after her daughter was teased about her hair during a ballet class.  

"She had the two little curly afro puffs. Went to class and was so excited and got teased about her hair. She was like, 'I don't want to go back to that class. Those kids are mean.' I'm like, 'Okay, what can I do to just kind of empower her and encourage her and make her feel good about herself'? I saw there weren't many books for kids that looked like mine, so I created one," said Perry, the founder and CEO of Kids Like Mine. 

"When we're together, our skin color doesn't mean a thing because we know it's what's inside that matters the most. Color should never keep two people from being close."

Five hundred thousand copies later, Perry's "Like Mine" series has taken off. 

She's expanded her products from books to apparel, accessories and more. But her attempt at inclusivity caused a great divide, landing her on the banned book list.  

"It's funny because, on one hand, they're trying to say these things aren't happening anymore. And then you go, and you ban a book like "Skin Like Mine" that is encouraging, not only self-love but just encouraging loving everybody for who they are. You are kind of sending a message to kids that one group is maybe better than the other," Perry said. 

For Perry, being banned is a badge of honor. 

"I felt proud to be on that list, especially because I'm on that list with some amazing, some legends," she said. "We got to continue to push harder. And if the schools remove it, I always say, parents, we have to do our job and make sure we are exposing our kids to these things at home."

In the end, Perry says she only wants all children to have the same happy ending for their stories.

"You can't live in a world where all you see is one race and think that's it. You kind of tend to think that that is the superior race because that's all you see. The more they see themselves on products, they see themselves on the toy shelves and inside of books and on commercials and everywhere," she said. 

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