Black People : RANDOM THOUGHTS ON AFRICAN-AMERICAN - My Comments

Discussion in 'Black People Open Forum' started by Goddess Auset333, Jun 10, 2007.

  1. Goddess Auset333

    Goddess Auset333 Banned MEMBER

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    > 10 June 2007
    >
    > Greetings Family,
    >
    > How are you? I am pretty good and pretty well rested
    > now. I've spent the last couple of days relaxing and
    > being with family, especially my daughter. My
    > daughter's name is Assata Garvey. She was named after
    > Assata Shakur and Marcus Garvey. She is almost twenty
    > months old now. She is very active, very intelligent,
    > and very beautiful. Or do all parents say that about
    > their children? Well, in my case it is true! I
    > really adore this child and I can really tell you that
    > being a first time father beginning at the age of
    > fifty has been a real experience and adjustment! And,
    > oh, by the way, her mother is fantastic!
    >
    > So now, what about those observations and issues that
    > came out of my most recent Africa trip that I said
    > that "I found myself reflecting on"? Let's take the
    > first one first.
    >
    > I do not expect this one to endear myself to you but I
    > need some feedback. You know, as I wandered around
    > Africa interacting with a lot of different kinds of
    > folks I found myself becoming more and more
    > comfortable with the term African-American.
    >
    > Don't get me wrong here. I still see myself as an
    > African living in America and I relish the expression
    > that "You are not an African because you are born in
    > Africa; you are an African because African is born in
    > you." But, for the moment at least, I am no longer
    > ashamed of or even uncomfortable with, as I once was,
    > the African-American label. What has brought about
    > this change?
    >
    > I've mentioned before that "travel causes you to
    > confront yourself, even deep seated values that you
    > rarely question." So let me put this in a context, as
    > maybe it has been growing and evolving for a while
    > now. I think that it may have accelerated last year
    > during an extended trip through Southern Africa.
    >
    > While in Johannesburg I spent time with a lot of
    > anti-apartheid activists. I enjoyed and admired them.
    > And then I went to East Africa and spent some time in
    > Kenya where I learned more about the Mau Mau
    > Rebellion. I remember speeches as a youth by Malcolm
    > X on the Mau Mau and I grew to adulthood during the
    > struggle to abolish apartheid. These were intense and
    > heroic struggles.
    >
    > And then, I thought to myself, have not the struggle
    > of Africans in America, for example, the civil rights
    > movement and the Black power movement, also been
    > intense and heroic. All of these movements, whether
    > in South Africa or Kenya or the United States,
    > inspired and influenced Africans around the world. And
    > growing up in Los Angeles and spending a lot of time
    > in Washington, D.C. with their large Ethiopian
    > communities, and visiting Ethiopia itself, reinforced
    > how proud these sisters and brothers are in their
    > Ethiopian heritage and identity. Is it a
    > contradiction to be Kenyan or Ethiopian or South
    > African, and just plain African? Is one not both, or
    > does one negate the other?
    >
    > Part of my recent shame about the word
    > African-American came from the sense that we are the
    > descendants of Africans who were captured and sent
    > into enslavement. But, just as sure, we resisted that
    > process every step of the way and defeated the efforts
    > of our enslavers. And so, I thought, perhaps being an
    > African-American, like being a South African or a
    > Kenyan or an Ethiopian, Africans all the same, is not
    > such a terrible thing after all.
    >
    > And then I began to realize more and more and more,
    > again through travel, that how in spite of our African
    > identity, how "American" we frequently act. I see
    > this, I am somewhat embarrassed to admit, a lot of
    > times in myself in regards to how I react and respond
    > to things, like food for example, and not being
    > prepared to embrace some of the things that other
    > Africans embrace. Here is an example, during my
    > recent trip to Malawi on at least three occasions I
    > saw roadside vendors holding up for sale long thin
    > sticks with roasted mice skewered on them. My
    > drivers, both of them, explained to me how the mice
    > were caught and how good they tasted. But I made no
    > effort to stop the cars that I was traveling in, as I
    > instinctively made up my mind that this was a meal of
    > mice that I was not going to have! Was that the
    > American in me?
    >
    > And I sometimes find myself getting angry when I don't
    > get the service that I am accustomed to. Anywhere
    > else in the world that I do it is not so bad but when
    > I behave that way in Africa itself I find myself more
    > than a little embarrassed.
    >
    > But I really see the "American" side during group
    > tours. And sometimes I am deeply embarrassed by both
    > what I see and hear. It really reached a low point in
    > Ghana last year when I heard a couple of of the
    > sisters on the tour joke among themselves about the
    > "bad smell" of the local people. Sisters and
    > brothers, I wanted to dig a hole in the ground and
    > jump in it and cover myself up. Another example is
    > the condescending way that we sometimes talk down to
    > sisters and brothers on the continent. And we do have
    > a rather bad reputation for excessive complaining.
    >
    > But instead of stressing about it perhaps these are
    > the times to really muster the courage to rise to the
    > occasion and patiently educate those of us who should
    > know better. So this may sound crazy, but in a way I
    > think that I have become more comfortable with the
    > term African-American because of the dawning reality
    > that as much as we like to see ourselves as "African"
    > and say that we are "African" our behavior is
    > frequently more "American" than the average European!
    > Please don't get me wrong here, as I am not endorsing
    > this behavior. It is only the realization as to how
    > "American" in many ways we have become, and how much
    > work we have to do to correct it.
    >
    > So these are just some random thoughts. Now, please
    > tell me if any of it makes sense. I am not a traitor
    > for raising these issues, am I? Have I gone crazy?
    > Have I always been crazy? Have I lost my mind or do I
    > just need to taken to the wood shed? Am I being
    > realistic or tribalistic? Am I setting the struggle
    > back?
    >
    > Get back to me and help a brother out. I need some
    > clarity.
    >
    > In love of Africa,
    >
    > Runoko Rashidi Okello, confused in France
    >
     
  2. BLAQ LOVE POURAHTREE

    BLAQ LOVE POURAHTREE Nefertum Husia Shayheh MEMBER

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    many claim a side or two or three or none let life be free to be africa from the americas holding on to your identification cards playing your part of the recipe they expect from your character floating about in they story if they pursue to be rich the upperclassmen and women then let them cause i will never see the entire assembly of dictators black anyway only monopoly keeps you secure black man working driving range rover out the salvage yard sparkling clean moving keen through the traffic jams switching lanes off the highways pedal to the metal european type driving on the autobahn and M in europe's england searching fore the land let every african-american buy a white picket fence multiple room home taking over and while it's all happening i'll be in peace chilling invisibly....
     
  3. Jionni1

    Jionni1 Member MEMBER

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    Just a little culture shock. Everyone gets it.
     
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