Black People : Why I'm Black, Not African American

Discussion in 'Black People Open Forum' started by BioRhythm, Jun 2, 2005.

  1. BioRhythm

    BioRhythm Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    May 16, 2005
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    2
    Ratings:
    +2
    By John McWhorter



    It's time we descendants of slaves brought to the United States let go of the term "African American" and go back to calling ourselves Black — with a capital B.



    Modern America is home now to millions of immigrants who were born in Africa. Their cultures and identities are split between Africa and the United States. They have last names like Onwughalu and Senkofa. They speak languages like Wolof, Twi, Yoruba and Hausa, and speak English with an accent. They were raised on African cuisine, music, dance and dress styles, customs and family dynamics. Their children often speak or at least understand their parents' native language.



    Living descendants of slaves in America neither knew their African ancestors nor even have elder relatives who knew them. Most of us worship in Christian churches. Our cuisine is more southern U.S. than Senegalese. Starting with ragtime and jazz, we gave America intoxicating musical beats based on African conceptions of rhythm, but with melody and harmony based on Western traditions.



    Also, we speak English. Black Americans' home speech is largely based on local dialects of England and Ireland. Africa echoes in the dialect only as a whisper, in certain aspects of sound and melody. A working-class black man in Cincinnati has more in common with a working-class white man in Providence than with a Ghanaian.

    John McWhorter, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, is the author of "Authentically Black" (Gotham Books, 2003).



    9/8/04

    Source: Los Angeles Times

    Click Here To Read The Entire Article
     
  2. Ralfa'il

    Ralfa'il Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2005
    Messages:
    1,781
    Likes Received:
    16
    Ratings:
    +16
    Problem is...Africans who now live in America are black too.

    So just calling oneself "black" isn't enough to distinguish one'sself from the other different ethnicities of our race.


    This is why I choose to call myself AfroAmerican, as Malcolm X wisely did.



    Our people as well as the rest of America needs a thourough knowledge of race and ethnicity.


    Race: Black, White, Oriental, Arab, ect...

    Nationality: Jamaican, Hatian, Nigerian, American, Somali, ect....

    Ethinic group: Hausa, Oromo, AfroAmerican, West Indian, Latino, Zulu, ect...


    The Black race encompasses a wide range of different cultures, nationalities, and ethinic groups.
     
  3. karmashines

    karmashines Banned MEMBER

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2005
    Messages:
    2,578
    Likes Received:
    19
    Ratings:
    +19
    Good point.
     
  4. BioRhythm

    BioRhythm Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    May 16, 2005
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    2
    Ratings:
    +2

    Yes there is a fallacy in his arguement... yet he also corrected that fallacy. He said that he could find no better term to use to express his ethnicity... and that until the time that he finds one he will use .. .the term black...

    Most have turned away from the word black because it is somewhat derogatory... .yet the real point he was making is that he isn't african american and neither am i.... I hesitantly agree with his use of the term "Black" but i know as he does that at this moment we have no better term.....

    I accept this... although i realize that it also creates the possibility of distancing ourselves from our brothers... but that is a risk he chose to take... I don't relish that idea... yet every other ethnicity in our race has a name for their cultures... why can't we... we need something.... we deserve something to symbolize our pain and our past....

    He gave us the best answer he could......

    :vball:

    Could either of you do better?

    Your serve......
     
  5. Destee

    Destee destee.com STAFF

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2001
    Messages:
    34,782
    Likes Received:
    8,982
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    betwixt and between
    Ratings:
    +9,680
    Brother BioRhythm ... Hello and Welcome ... :wave:

    Brother ... please review our forum rules ... specifically rule #2, as it relates to adding the property of others to this site, without their permission ... which you've done above.

    Basically i need you to at least include a link to the owner's site ... and don't include their whole property without their permission. Include a couple / few paragraphs ... but not the whole thing, please.

    This link, #2 specifically, explains it all.

    Please edit the post accordingly, or i will.

    Thanks a Bunch.

    :heart:

    Destee
     
  6. Pharaoh Jahil

    Pharaoh Jahil Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2003
    Messages:
    1,165
    Likes Received:
    25
    Occupation:
    College Student
    Location:
    Mother Earth
    Ratings:
    +25
    I prefer to have a nationality, instead of just go by race.... I'm a man of African descent......'black' just doesn't cut it for me.
     
  7. MrSolo

    MrSolo Banned MEMBER

    Joined:
    May 23, 2005
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Not African and not black, but what?

    Though many people in the United States who are classified as black have some identifiable or traceable African ancestry, they also have other ancestry as well; be it white, Indian, Asian or other racial and ethnic affinity. As a result, lumping an entire class of people into African American seems a bit far-fetched.

    African American seems appropriate for a distinct African in the United States, but it appears to be rather out of place for the balance of the "black" U.S. population. Problem is; "black" in Africa referred to just that, the darkest of its inhabitants from given domains, regions and tribes. However, those in Africa who were not classified as black were referred to as mulattos, mixed-race, Arabs, other ethnicities (i.e., not referring to race), and believe it or not, Asian.

    My opinion is that no, there is not a broad dislike of anything African or black, but there is a dislike of identities that are forced upon those who chose not to identify in that regard, especially if that identity is inaccurate. Save "black", it in of itself is probably the most misleading descriptor of them all. To me, black is more of an association, affinity, preference, culture and the like more than it is a classification. Its ease of use by Caucasians and Asians seems more suited to one who quickly wants to infer control over a substandard state of, being, mind or capability.

    Perhaps down the road, so-called (blacks and African Americans) may actually adopt the "Individual of African Descent" moniker or something else that suits their ideals without distorting who they really are. Last but not least, it certainly seems like every one but the American Indian is running around claiming to be "Something" American. Hopefully, (blacks and African Americans) will one day be able to find a unifying (and not divisive) identity which will help them promote the American way of life and culture and at the same time allow those who want to identify with African or anything else the freedom to do so without being falsely praised or truly castigated for assuming such a position.

    One thing is for sure, at the rate interacial marraiges and births are occurring, one day all of this racial classification stuff may be moot. Boy, what a disappointment that's going to be to the "Old Boy" network.
     
  8. HODEE

    HODEE Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2003
    Messages:
    4,912
    Likes Received:
    613
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    (RF) Technician
    Location:
    ( Alonewolf ) California.. by way of the LOU
    Ratings:
    +795
    We have used the term black. The term black power scares america.. raise your fist and carry your afro pick with a fist raised high and they shiver..

    In the sixties we called ourselves black. Say it loud.. I'm black and I'm Proud! Is more than a James Brown song. There is nothing wrong with African American. Nothing wrong with Afro-American.. we used to address each other better. We called a fellow black man brother when we did our hand ( shake, slap ) jive. Call yourself what ever but until we get away from the N word and stop trying to glorify it or make it a standard we aren't going to get things right. That word could never be turned positive. Don't you hear the laughing of the clan.. :haha: :haha: :haha: they got us calling ourselves what they would love to say. Exactly what we fought thirty years ago not to be called.

    So my ( soul ) brothers and ( soul ) sisters just let me know how you want to be addressed. :deal:
     
  9. Isaiah

    Isaiah Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Messages:
    3,210
    Likes Received:
    62
    Ratings:
    +62
    Mcwhorter sounds like a man with Identity problems... I use the words and phrases interchangeably, and identify with either... He makes the claim that we have more in common with white people than our own, and then says we are neither White nor African... How absurd is that???

    We are what we are culturally, and our cultural identity is far more African than McWhorter seems to understand... He is a social scientist, not a scholar of African history and culture... If he studied our culture more closely, more direct from those who've studied it, and researched and written about it, he would not make the kinds of crazy statements he makes..

    But here comes more controversy for him, and those who think like he does...
    African Americans identify with the CONTINENT of Africa, because our ancestors came from many places on the COntinent of Africa... Africans arriving here from Nigeria, the Congo, Senegal, and Ghana, have more of an identification with their native countries, than with the continent as a whole. Ask any Nigerian, any Ghanian, where he is from, and he will tell you that he is from Nigeria or Ghana, not Africa... He is not identifying with the entire land mass as African Americans are, but with his native country.

    That is the reason African Americans are using the term, to address our need to deal with our identification with the continent as a whole, and considering that so many continentals feel that we DON'T identify with Africa at all, that is to be praised, not taken as an insult... The insult is that we are here in the first place, not that we are here and proudly identifying with the beloved geography from which we were deracinated, and whose memory the captors of our ancestors sought to obliterate from our minds... McWhorter sounds like they did a fine job on his mind... Those who join in on his chorus may well say the same about themselves...

    Peace!
    Isaiah
     
  10. Ralfa'il

    Ralfa'il Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2005
    Messages:
    1,781
    Likes Received:
    16
    Ratings:
    +16
    Karma

    You mean me and Karma are finally starting to see eye to eye on some things?

    Oh lawdy, this is a Kodak moment! :picture:





    Bio

    I just told you that I chose the same term our brother Malcolm chose for an ethinic identity: AfroAmerican.


    The word Black is convenient, but not only is it specific enough to describe our various nationalities and ethinicities.....it's also not a very accurate term for our race either.
    Because in actuallity we are various shades of brown and very few of our people are actually "black".

    Although we have different features, we are no more "black" than the Indian race.

    Yet we are called black and they are classified as Caucasian.
     
Loading...