MIAMI — Six-year-olds Jia Sarnicola and Zuri Copeland say they're not best friends. As we first reported a couple years ago, they say they're closer than friends, closer than mere sisters, even. In fact, Jia and Zuri truly believe they're twins.
Ashley and Valencia are their moms. "They will tell you that they are twins and they have a long list of reasons why to back it up," Ashley said. For example, the girls say their birthdays are practically the same day. They also point to physical similarities, with Jia saying they're the same height.
They also insist on matching outfits whenever possible. So far, Ashley and Valencia have indulged them. But they also recognize there is some bitter to this sweet.
"You know, you're happy for a few seconds and then you become sad because they have to grow up – and then society takes over," Valencia said.
Indeed, society already tried to take over. Zuri and Jia were at a birthday party when an older kid told them they couldn't be twins because they don't have the same skin color. Jia broke down, but through her tears she got out this rebuttal. She said, "You don't know what you're talking about. We're twins because we share the same soul."
"I was just thrown by just that word," Valencia said.
Obviously, what Jia was trying to say is that, at our core, we are one. Since this story first aired in 2017, America hasn't always followed their lead. But it's important to remember that while all that was going on, so was this.
Today, in their minds, they are still twins. Of course, they have their moments, like when Zuri accused Jia of having a boyfriend. That didn't go over well, at all.
But by and large, they are as close as ever and still an example, just waiting to be followed.
"We have a lot to learn and we can learn from children," Valencia said.
That's really what the twins want for all of us – to push back against the cynics and move on to more important things in life.
"We're going to get ice cream," they exclaimed.