This topic has been on my mind for a while now. It is also becoming a topic in other podcast, blogs, and youtube videos. I think its great that the "black" community (especially black Americans) are becoming more critical of everything. We should always question everything and especially other black people. We should also question each other.
I've never disliked Africans. I honestly don't remember it being that many Africans in America growing up as a child. I'm now 31. I grew up in Savannah, Georgia. I'm sure there were a lot of Africans wherever some of you grew up. There weren't many in Savannah. At least there weren't that many Africans or Caribbeans for me to notice it and really pay attention. I never had any issues with the couple of black foreigners I did run into. In college, I noticed that they hung out together. I thought that was cool. Still didn't have a problem with it. I basically just thought that they were black. We all black. We all family. We all one. But as I got into my mid to late 20s and started to study some other people and listen to other podcast, I started to see things differently. Much more clearer. And after watching a youtube series called The Grapevine, I get it..........
Africans, Caribbeans, and (so called) African Americans are 3 different tribes of people. I already knew this. Watching The Grapevine just confirmed it.
Foreign negroes know this when they come over here. Whether it's because they learned about us, were warned about us, or simply because they just have pride in their homeland, they know they ain't us. However, we think that we're them. But we're not.
Whether you believe that African Americans and Caribbeans ( who I also consider Americans but whatever) are indigenous to this land and never were brought against their will in chains from Africa, we ain't the same as Africans. Or whether you believe that slavery happened the way most history books says that it happened with the slave trade and how millions of Africans (our would be ancestors) were stolen from their homeland and brought here to work, we ain't the same as Africans. That would have happened about 500 years ago. We just look the same. Some of us. They're people who will debate that as well.
We have different cultures, customs, heritage, lineage, and values. Our stories are not the same and Africa is on another side of the world. As long as there is respect, Im cool with that. But is there really respect?
After watching the Youtube channel The Grapevine, I have come to the conclusion that Africans are basically here to make a better life for themselves and that's about it. I'm not sure if the Africans on the show realized this but they literally said it over and over again. They didn't flee war torn countries (and in some cases paradise) to come over here and help us with our shit. Or at least not initially. They came here for opportunity. Some Africans have a "If we win, all black people win" mentality. Some of them mentioned returning to Africa. They said building and trading with Americans would be "Kum by yah-ish". I agree that the task of building and trading is easier said than done. They also said that Black Americans should not have a "colonization" or "imperial" mindset if they ever decide to come and build in Africa. One African lady said it was "disrespectful" to ask foreign blacks what they're doing to push the African American agenda forward. They said we should ask all immigrants the same thing. They said that their success is connected to us. They said we create "oppression olympics" and they compared our oppression to them being teased...........literally.
Then there was this long annoying amount of time spent on cultural appropriation. Don't get me wrong, cultural appropriation can bother me too. However, at the end of the day, you can't tell me what I can and can't wear at home. In my home country. Now, if I go to your home country and do something taboo I get it. But what's taboo over there may not be taboo over here. All people should just give credit where credit is due. I'm definitely not an advocate for cultural appropriation but people influence people everywhere. I feel like it's people getting mad at other people for biting their culture's style. I get it. Trust me. I'm a rnb artist so you know I get it. But I also understand that they're much more pressing issues. I think we should use the when in Rome rule to help settle this quarrel.
They're here to come up. I totally get it. However, I don't think Africans get it. Do Black Americans get it? Africans don't get that this makes them just like all other immigrants. They're not here for us. They aren't thinking about the so called "African American" a.k.a us. But should they be? I think most of us feel like they should. But they're not. They're not here to join the fight with us. Some do. Most won't. Most of them don't have the same racial hangups like us. Most, not all. At least not to the same degree. They're usually not as militant. Not as informed. They're here to benefit off of us. All immigrants are here to benefit off of us. I say "us" because we built this country and paved the way for every damn body and our dollar doesn't circulate. So yes, us. Again, don't get me wrong, some will join the fight. This isn't an all inclusive issue. Some are allies. At least they speak like they are.
Africans and all other immigrants put themselves first. It is what it is. It's the environment that has been created in this country. It's like you wanna blame them, but can you really? If I came to America and saw it was easy to come up off of African Americans, I would probably do the same. But I also like to think that I'd be an ally. I'd be a passive ally, but an ally.
My only thing is that we should be first. Not just in our eyes, but everyone else's too. It's a total disrespect to us and our ancestors to not treat us like the special beings that we are. I'm not just talking about talent and all that black girls rock and black boy joy and black girl magic stuff. I'm talking about the fact that they're wouldn't be an America without us. We literally are America. We're more American than any other group on this continent (including Native Americans).
Put some respect on our name!!!!