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I’m Not African American. I’m Black.

• Apr 4, 2016

Cultural identity has long been a topic of discussion in America. For Black Americans who descended from slaves, that identity was always chosen for them. From terms like “negro” to “colored”, Black Americans have often been labeled by the majority.

So let’s take a look at the timeline of ethnic labels in America

1800s- “Negro” was deemed to be the proper English-language term for people of black African origin.

1890 Census: Blacks were asked to choose among four ethnic labels: black, mulatto, quadroon and octoroon, depending upon the degree of white blood in their ancestry.

1970s- “Afro-American” garners popularity before later being overshadowed by African-American.

1988- Reverend Jesse Jackson held a press conference with the agenda that Black people should be referred to as African-American citing, “To be called African-Americans has cultural integrity. It puts us in our proper historical context. Every ethnic group in this country has a reference to some land base, some historical cultural base. African- Americans have hit that level of cultural maturity.”

1989– In a survey that year conducted by ABC and The Washington Post, 66 percent said they preferred the term Black, 22 preferred African-American, 10 percent liked both terms and 2 percent had no opinion.

2000- the Census Bureau for the first time allowed respondents to check a box that carried the heading African-American next to the term Black

2010- the US Census Bureau included “Negro” on the US Census, citing older African-Americans still identify themselves this way.

2011: In a NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, 42 percent of respondents said they preferred black, 35 percent said African-American, 13 percent said it doesn’t make any difference, and 7 percent chose “some other term.”

2014- US Army removed the term Negro” from new regulations that described Black or African-American personnel

Slate changes it’s standard from African-American to black American

African-American Identity

Around the time of Reverend Jesse Jackson’s 1988 presidential campaign he also campaigned for black Americans to adapt the term “African-American” as an identifier.

Every ethnic group in this country has a reference to some land base, some historical cultural base. African-Americans have hit that level of cultural maturity.”

President Barack Obama weighed in on his choice to identify as African-American, citing his Kenyan background:

Some of the patterns of struggle and degradation that blacks here in the United States experienced aren’t that different from the colonial experience in the Caribbean or the African continent. For me, the term African-American really does fit. I’m African, I trace half of my heritage to Africa directly and I’m American.”

Identifying as Black-American

The African diaspora has been in America since at least the 1500s. In relation to cultures that are millenia years old, Black Americans are still very new on the scene and defining who they are. And more and more people are concluding that the ‘African American’ label is incorrect. These Black American writers weighed in on why they choose to identify as Black over African-American:

Brionna Renee

Being black in America does not make you African-American. Being black and African-American are not mutually inclusive descriptors that hold true for every person of color.”

Shahida Muhammad

I have never been offended by the use of ‘African American,’ but personally there a few reasons I don’t particularly like the term. I have used it in my writing when making efforts to be politically correct, or as an alternative reference to Black people. Yet I have always viewed it as just that: a politically correct alternative to Black. Never something I whole-heartedly embraced. I have checked it on applications, but never used it to self-identify in real-life. It has always felt forced, redundant, and quite frankly, inaccurate. Using the term ‘African American’ feels like using Kente cloth made in China trying desperately to authenticate myself. In theory I know where I’m from, but in actuality I wasn’t made there.”

ReNina Sunshine Minter

He is from Nigeria. From what I hear, it’s a beautiful country full of culture, pride, and history. He came to this country almost 20 years ago and became an American citizen along the way. He is very proud to be African-American. And I am proud for him. But our story is not the same. He arrived in this country by choice and on a plane. My people arrived in an involuntary manner via boat ride.”

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.”

Foreign-Born Blacks Enter the Naming Debate

Foreign-born Blacks are also divided on the issue of naming. Back in 2004, The New York Times reported on the issue and didn’t find a singular standard.

Some immigrants and their children prefer to be called African or Nigerian-American or Jamaican-American, depending on their countries of origin. Other people prefer the term black, which seems to include everyone, regardless of nationality.”

Angelique Shofar, the Liberian-born host of a weekly radio program in Washington called “Africa Meets Africa,” prefers to call herself an African, even though she has lived in the United States for 28 of her 39 years.

Phillip J. Brutus, the first Haitian-born state legislator in Florida, favors the term Black because it includes foreign-born immigrants and Black Americans. Brutus lives in Miami, where more than a third of the Blacks are foreign born. “African-American has become the politically correct term to use, but I still say Black,” Brutus said. “I say I’m Black and American. That’s what’s most accurate. I think, by and large, Black is more encompassing.”

Labeling Makes an Economic Difference

In 2014, The Journal of Experimental Social Psychology published the results of a study conducted by Emory University’s Erika Hall which identifies significant difference of public perception based on which of the widely acceptable terms — Black or African American — is applied. The result? White people favored “African-American over black.”

Essentially we gave half of our white American participants an application for that read that a person was Chicago it had their address and the only difference between the two application forms we randomly assigned people to is that one had race listed as ‘African American’ and the other had race listed as ‘black.’ We noticed that white Americans rated the black applicant as having lower status as being less educated, having a lower income and less likely to be in a managerial position.

Labeling Shapes Sympathy in Crime

Hall also tested a theory with the high profile case of Trayvon Martin and noted that the term “African-American” did not illicit much sympathy because of the assumption of a higher socioeconomic status:

With the Trayvon Martin study that we did, we evaluated a black or African American victim and this changes things totally around. Because if that victim is perceived to be low socioeconomic status or disadvantaged or needed help then you’re more likely to have empathy for that victim than an African American victim which is perceived to be higher socioeconomic status and not in need of that help. When Trayvon Matrin was described as a black teenager then people were more favorable to his case than when he was described as an African American teenager. Furthermore they were more likely to say that Zimmerman was guilty when Trayvon Martin was described as a black teenager than when he was described as an African American teenager.

Just “American”

Of course you have some folks who want to drop the “African” part altogether and solely identify as “American” like Whoopi Goldberg and Raven Symone.

Although the idea of removing a race/ethnicity identifier isn’t shared by many Black Americans, the reasoning behind it this stems from the extensive generational ties Black Americans share to the country. America, as we know it was built on the backs of Black Americans for more than three centuries. Let’s not forget the additional 100 years of legal segregation and blatant institutionalized racism which proceeded immediately after the ratification of the 13th Amendment.

Where do you stand on this issue? How do you choose to identify?

Source

About Rinny

Texan by birth, Los Angeleno by situation. Lover of Tame Impala and Shoegaze music. Comedian by trade. Macaroni and Cheese connoisseur by appetite.

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120 Comments on "I’m Not African American. I’m Black."

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rehs sllew
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I always had a problem with the phrase African American. Caucasians in America are considered just that Caucasian or white, even though they are descendants from Europe. They are never considered European American.
Example, Rapper Pitfall is considered Cuban american, he was born in Miami to Cuban parents. Therefore an African American would be someone born in America to African born parents. I try explaining this to people all the time and no one is humble enough to actually listen

Milos Mom
Guest

Respect people and refer to them as they wish. Stop trying to persuade people to think like you. There is no right or wrong with this topic.

I am African American
Guest
I am African American

Well the difference between being Cuban American and African American is that Africa is a continent and Cuba is a nation. African American refers to a specific part of the diaspora. Most African Americans (black people in America) cannot use labels connected to specific nations. Lots of white people take great pride in being Italian American or Irish American…just like many Asian people use terms like Chinese American or Japanese America. Most Africans don’t just call themselves African (there are 54 nations), we hear lots of Nigerian American though!

Ava Monroe
Guest
My hospital birth record classified me as Colored 57 years ago. Negro; Colored; Black; African American; Coon; Spook; Monkey; Darkie; the other N-word; etc. are nothing but the bywords that my forefather Moses spoke about in Deuteronomy 28. I am an Israelite, a jewel of the earth, The Most High portion, of a chosen people by the Most High God. I hate being classified as anything else, I have been trying to get the amount of signatures needed on my petition(like Jesse Jackson did when he tried to have us classified as African Americans, we’re given a choice on some… Read more »
fromanotherplanet
Guest

DEAD @ I am an Israelite. I am so done with this thread LOL!!!!! This is all teeew much. Teeew much.

Ava Monroe
Guest

Happy Hebrew

Ava Monroe
Guest

More precious than, gold or diamonds, we are the jewels of the earth. Shalom

cryssi
Guest

I view myself as black and African American.

My dad only views himself as black and says he wasn’t born in Africa and doesn’t know any ancestors on the continent. He says “I’m black and from Tunica, MS.”

I feel we are still figuring it out. We know we’re more than American, but we’re also not quite African. We don’t know where we fall exactly.

Miss T
Guest
I am not African American, and have never embraced the term someone else chose. I’ve traced my lineage, So far I don’t have any direct African ancestors. Black people, please do your research! Has your “African” heritage been passed down in your family? Any, African stories? Traditions? Recipes? Most black people are indigenous to this country. Trace your lineage, do your research, just think about it people. Have you ever seen a slave ship, other than that same drawing thats been around for years. Research black “Indian” tribes as well. Is it really that hard to believe that we are… Read more »
theysleep
Guest

lordt!!! this article bringing out the crazies

maralondon
Guest
Yes but where does the term American come from, isn’t that aslo made up. If you actually do some research yourself you will find people who have had historical accounts from the days of slavery passed down to their families. There are many traditional stories from West Africa that are still around in the Caribbean for instance. The food some of us eat to music dance have their roots in Africa. When I was in America back in the late 90’s there was a touring exhibition of an old slave ship that had been dug up from the Atlantic ocean.… Read more »
Miss T
Guest
The term America may very well be made up, I don’t know. To be honest with you, I believe very little of what the history books have to say about “America”. Do I believe slavery existed? Yes. Do I believe everything that has been told about slavery in its entirety? No. And there are many reasons why, but I will just name a few, It was logistically impossible hundreds of years ago to travel the Atlantic for months back and forth carrying millions of slaves in those conditions, the technology simply wasn’t available during that time. There is no way… Read more »
Julia Odell
Guest

I’m the child of a non-citizen black African parent. I always cringe when I see forms with “White, African American, Asian American, etc” on them because what is my father supposed to check? He’s not African American and never will be. I’m a brown American with predominately African heritage.

Milos Mom
Guest

The beauty of it all is that you can chose to called whichever you like. I personal connect with African-American and I am quick to correct someone who uses any other wording.

fromanotherplanet
Guest

I am so over these race think pieces. Bye!

LionAround
Guest

My father is from the Carribbean, my mother from South America and I was born in NYC. While sure I’m sure we can trace our ancestors to Africa that was far longer ago than has any relevance. No matter where I am or end up living in this world I am Black. And I am American. African isn’t something I can actively claim. I already have three countries of my own to rep, father’s, mother’s and mine.

KosmoKhaos
Guest

I’ve always seen “African-American” as a term showing that we are the descendants of our African ancestors, whether we know our direct heritage or not. I also find the term acceptable because “African” is a broad term. Africa is a continent not a country. We don’t know where in Africa we came from while an immigrant from Africa will know and easily be able to trace their lineage. I think that Black and African-American can be used interchangeably. I mean, if you’re Black born in Europe it doesn’t make you European soooo…

zenny
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This discussion is ignorant, ridiculous,sad and pathetic. I don’t have time for liberals and conservatives alike and these shenanigans. You can’t tell an African American from a Black American the only difference is one has slave descendants in the United States and the other one doesn’t. Both groups have different social dynamics so it makes sense that one doesn’t address a group as “black people” because that’s racist like lol you forget how genetically/socially diverse we all are and how many ethnicities. If someone doesn’t want to point out their slave descendent heratige that’s their personal issue but you are… Read more »
K_
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personally, i prefer Black American because if not how does that distinguish me from people born in Africa ONLY in the sense that our upbringings were completely different culturally. Black Americans are unique in that sense we have no direct ancestor to trace us to anything except slavery and if you are lucky you may trace an ancestor pre slavery and but even then it stops ..no african ancestor we can identify for MOST not all. I also like the term because it as that one person mentioned in teh article it encompasses all. Nigerian, Congolese, Jamaican, Haitian or American… Read more »
Dangerous Lee
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liberianwoman
Guest

Sucking my damn teeth. As if we don’t have enough problems as it is,or far better things to debate on.

KnottyNatural
Guest

I get your perspective; however I identify as AA because I am racially of African descent but ethnically American.

Lola
Guest

There is no such thing as African race. Yes you are ethnically American. We all are who are naturalized or born.

KnottyNatural
Guest

Apart of the Negro racial group…You could call me Negro American and it would mean the same thing to me. I don’t find AA, Negro, or POC offensive.

Lola
Guest

I don’t subscribe to that socially constructed and convoluted construct.

KnottyNatural
Guest

Thankfully we can choose for ourselves.

KnottyNatural
Guest

And I think you’re being disingenuous! You know good and well the term “African” points to the continent as most American black descendants of slaves do not know which country in African from which they descend.

Lola
Guest

So because a fraction of people don’t know what country they originate from, then I am supposed to negate my origin? No the whole world does not revolve around “African Americans”. It only seems disingenuous to you because you can’t see past your perspective. There are many of us out there that were born here and know the country their family came. In fact if I am speaking about Americans, then that is the majority. It is totally disingenuous and misleading of you to think that your perspective is king.

KnottyNatural
Guest

TO ME…my perspective is King… Again, to each her own.

naughtycorner
Guest

It is not your place to tell her how to identify that is the point.Personally I dont use the term AA but I respect those who do

Lola
Guest

It is my place, especially when it is society standard. Also I have to correct an error. Africa is a continent and not a country.

Angela
Guest

Oy. We should pick a name and be done with it. Black, African American, African– every time someone says, “I’m not that”.. A black fairy dies.JK- Seriously , we are the chumps of the world because we never get together as black people. White folks are white, colonized the world in the name of whiteness and we are still quibbling about a name. Do we deserve everything we get??

Ava Monroe
Guest

You will become a thing of horror, a byword and an object of ridicule among all the peoples where the LORD will drive you.

Deuteronomy 28:37

liberianwoman
Guest

Is there a reason for my comment not being posted? I left comment on a few articles but never saw them post.

Curls&StripedSweaters
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Curls&StripedSweaters

Im black but im not that black.I am african american and my dad is from kenya.

Cosita
Guest

White people do use those terms. Where I live they even have their own social clubs and associations like French-American, Slavic American so on. And these people are generations removed from the old country. I have been to the Slavic Club. They eat good. Know how to party.

Lola
Guest

Yes they get to comfortably identify with their families nation of origin outside of the US and no one thinks they are foreign or force them to be called white or European American.

Cosita
Guest
I self identify as black for race and American for nationality. I fit the profile of what is labeled as AA but I don’t identify as such. Anyone who says that is denying my heritage can get over it. As I have said before my feeling is saying “African” alone does not automatically make one“black”. Not Everyone over there is black. I went to North Africa and saw very few black people where I was and those people are just as much Africans. Ttechnically they are considered Caucasian But I don’t rec calling them white. Someone did that to an… Read more »
Miss T
Guest

I’m just curious, what part of my comment do you consider crazy?

JackpotJoy
Guest
Dont mind her! Thats what I did I have no African slaves in my family and my people are from the Caribbean. The vast majority of people who identify as ‘black’ American/Caribbean and Latina did not have their ancestors dropped off on slave ships from West Africa, and if they did it was mainly African men that were mixing with the indigenous women not the other way around you ask yourself how 100+ million slaves could be packed on a ship inumane conditions for months and survive it? As well as being beaten brutally. That is a lie to let… Read more »
fromanotherplanet
Guest

Thats what I did I have no African slaves in my family and my people are from the Caribbean.”

And where did the black people from the Caribbean come from????? LOL This thread is a mess. I am cackling. I cannot.

inspirelead
Guest
I have always hated the label “African American” as a general term for anyone with brown skin in America. It has never made any sense to me. All human races originated from Africa but beyond that, the color of my skin does not mean that my immediate ancestors are from Africa. My great grandmother said that we are Blackfoot Indian and on the other side of my family, we have Indian heritage too. Anyone with pigment in their skin could be a combination of different cultures, considering that American as we know it began with Europeans invading and subsequently taking… Read more »
Miss T
Guest

I’m just curious, what part of my comment is crazy?

Dee
Guest
Well, i find it quite contradictory for black people on her to be offended when Black people who do not associate with American or African cultures are telling you that they don’t identify as African American. Its dismissive to simply respond that “there are other more pressing issues to debate”. You sound like a white man telling black people, “what about black on black crime” in response to police brutality. The human brain has the capacity to have more than one discussion. News: NOT EVERY BLACK PERSON IS AMERICAN. BLACK people do not only come from two places (America or… Read more »
Lola
Guest
There is historical inaccuracy in this opinion piece. African Americans or Blacks in this country self identified as African for most of this countries inception. Don’t believe me? I cite the African Methodist Church aka AME Church. This term “black” or Negro (more so black than Negro) is a 20th Century creation by the Biological Determinists among others. You also left out those of us, that identify ourselves rightly so as American of ____ descent. I am an American, but I know where my ancestors came from so I am an American of Nigerian descent. Europeans mainly call themselves American… Read more »
Ava Monroe
Guest

I knew it seed of Ham, all my life I was told that your own people sold you into slavery, now I know you are NOT of our people and your forefathers knew it that’s why they had no problem selling us, the prophecy had to be fulfilled

You will become a thing of horror, a byword and an object of ridicule among all the peoples where the LORD will drive you.

Deuteronomy 28:37 If you’re wise, then
you will know

Lola
Guest

It is easy to learn. There are so many Nigerians here and been here for decades. As well before it was a country those from that region have been here for during inception. Also just because you don’t know what COUNTRY your ancestors come from doesn’t mean you should deny the origin of your ancestors from the CONTINENT of Africa.

Lola
Guest

LOL, that is a very simple way of saying what I said. Love it!

Lola
Guest

The last part of your statement is not based in fact and has been thoroughly debunked from science to culture.

Ava Monroe
Guest

So YOU say, and WANT to believe, makes me wonder, or you Jewish? well if so debunked what Revelations 2:9 and 3:9 has to say about you

Ava Monroe
Guest

All sound like a bunch of lost sheep that will soon be lead to slaughter so confused as to what they are as a people, Be a color, be a state be a state and a continent how about read your bible and see if ya got any people in there who are called by the color of their skin

Ava Monroe
Guest

E1B1A is my and the Israeli Hebrew DNA and the generational curses MY forefather Moses spoke about in Deuteronomy 28 apply to my people, so I’m sorry to of bust your scientific bubble, bet you believe we evolved from apes righttttt? so no need to even try convincing you about the fact that I’m an Israelite.

Lola
Guest
It is amazing how much you pulled from one sentence! Ham is not the forefather of the “African” race. That has been debunked and is rooted in Biological Determinism aka Scientific Racism. Now in regards to E1B1A if you take it as fact and face value, then I would be in that group and I would have dominate gene pool in that area. Why? Because both of my parents hail from that ancestry. Deut. 28 speaks about being cursed if you do not obey God’s law. Now I believe the Messiah has come, so I have someone who has overcome… Read more »
Lola
Guest
No Europeans call themselves American. Let me remind you that America is a word from Spain… So it is European. The funny thing is that everyone colonized by settler colonies take on fully their colonizer’s identity. Hence the “Hispanics” and “Latinos” or “Cubans” or “Jamaicans”. They don’t even remember or have evidence of their original origins like Aztec or Inca or Pueblo so just self identify with their colonizers the Spanish. You know from Spain. I find this the funny thing with us here. The cultural construct of race has done so much damage. You are an American of African… Read more »
Lola
Guest

I am an American of Nigerian descent. I am an American. I don’t identify with the entire Continent.

Lola
Guest

Ahh but their is when we are talking about identity. There are false assumptions and lots of wrong facts, so there is a right or wrong answer. We have not even covered power.

ARM
Guest

I identify as Black American, mainly because my race is Black and my nationaity is American. My culture is that of the Africans who were forced to come here over 400 years ago. I think “black american” makes more sense than AA because AA sounds like someone who is 1st,2nd, 3rd, etc generation coming to America. I think Black American just more clearly states where I come from and my ethnicity. I dont have a huge problem with AA tho

Ava Monroe
Guest

You will become a thing of horror, a byword and an object of ridicule among all the peoples where the LORD will drive you.

Deuteronomy 28:37

ARM
Guest

Honey bun on Disqus they have whole pages dedicated to religion and bible studies go spout your knowledge there

Ava Monroe
Guest

If you are wise, then you will know it is NOT about religion, it’s about who some of us really are as a people, and by reading your comment it is apparent that you’re not one of us. Shalom

kate
Guest

Sorry, your race is human. I wish the census focused on ancestry than asking for people’s “races,” when the American government paid for a study that disproved that there are separate races of humans (The Human Genome Project). I hate using racial terms like “black” and “white” that were created in attempt to justify the slave trade. There’s nothing empowering about them. I descend from a particular ethnicity. I’m not “black.” Even color wise, I’m brown.

kalexa1
Guest

I’m black and born in Britain; that to me makes me Black British. However, census surveys and many job application forms et al only have options such as afro-caribbean and/or african or mixed. Go figure.

kate
Guest

Where’s your ancestry from? I think it’s better for there to be distinctions than America just lumping every black person into one category. I’m proud to be who I am. I don’t want to defer to a generic, outdated racial term.

Miss_T
Guest
Okay.… I just want to say how ignorant this whole argument is. Actually, why exactly is there an argument? I hate to sound rude and rash but really? You know what, there are better things to do in life (and for our people) than argue about being black or African American. In my opinion, call yourself whatever. At the end of the day, the majority of Blacks born in the United States are mixed. Very mixed. You can take a group of black people including myself and get some who say they have French descent, Some with Asian descent, some… Read more »
laila
Guest
i don’t think there should b any argument around this. you can simply reason out a solution with common sense. “black” refers to people (anywhere in the world) of the negroid race that are classified by certain physical features. “black american” refers to black people that are solely american with no recent family ties to any other place outside of america. “african american” — africans living in america, black people in america that have recent family ties to any african country. “Caribbean american” Caribbeans living in america, black people in america that have recent family ties to any caribbean country.… Read more »
Ava Monroe
Guest

You will become a thing of horror, a byword and an object of ridicule among all the peoples where the LORD will drive you.

Deuteronomy 28:37 If you’re wise, then you will know

laila
Guest

back to sender.

Ava Monroe
Guest

I was but not anymore, and you know why? I woke up and I know who I am and I appreciate who I am and I am happy and proud about who I am, the Most High told Moses his name was what/ I AM

ashmcsidhe
Guest

Douay and King James translations say it nicer, and more empowering and without the implied hate: “And thou shalt become an astonishment, a proverb, and a byword, among all the peoples whither Jehovah shall lead thee.”

YMMV, of course, and frankly, not my god, not my book, not my peoples, as I’m not Jewish.

Ava Monroe
Guest

You will become a thing of horror, a byword and an object of ridicule among all the peoples where the LORD will drive you.

Deuteronomy 28:37 African American today, what would the byword be tomorrow?

Jumoke
Guest
finally someone said it. The funny thing is that I have had talks with Black Americans in the past and a few get offended when I call them that because I’m Nigerian and they might’ve felt that continental Africans were trying to take that piece away from them or say that they’re not African but it ain’t even like that lol It’s just… 1) Africa is a continent, not a country. “African” is not an ethnic group or a race. Africa is just a geological location. Heck, Egypt was considered part of the “Middle East” before it was accepted as… Read more »
maralondon
Guest

So what do you call Africans who have some European or Asian Ancestry?

Jumoke
Guest
It depends lol North Africans have Arabic and European origins but they have been merged into a specific ethnic group yet still “African.” You gotta understand that no one (I’m exaggerating) in Africa refers to themselves as “African” because it’s like referring to yourself as human lol We refer to ourselves by tribe. Also, keep in mind that the way we view race and ethnicity in America is not the same as the rest of the world. In Africa, we are fluid with our identity and are not limited to just Black, or African, or Nigerian, or Yoruba. We are… Read more »
Miss T
Guest
Thank you! I appreciate and respect people like you who are thinkers and do research. Most black people that claim “African American” have never questioned or done any research on their own. I’m not trying to be funny but, its interesting that they talk about race and what white people have done, but they don’t question the fact that “white people” told them their so called history and they accepted it as fact. Doesn’t anyone ever wonder why our history in America only starts after the revolutionary war and slavery? Never any history about black people before, just the same… Read more »
JackpotJoy
Guest

Exactly its white people wanting to steal our land. They call themselves American, welsh, scottish, greek, irish yet black people are the foreigners!? These damn honkeys make me sick! Continue on your research hun. We are the true INDIANS!

Miss T
Guest
Yes we are. I’m glad there are other individuals like yourself that know the truth. If people just took the time to ask questions and do a little research they would be surprised how deep our history really is, and how deep the lies are surrounding the fact that this is our land. Its funny, black people believe whites stole millions of slaves, but they don’t believe they would lie about other things. I looked up several DNA companies and do you know they all stated that they could not determine if a person has Native American ancestry! But are… Read more »
JackpotJoy
Guest

Thats why you have these idiots on here trolling i dont listen to ANYTHING white people say they chat nonsense as they always do!

Marmima
Guest

The label african american irks me. I live in canada and I was born in the US true,but I’m congolese-canadian! People have no problem calling people asian american and native american but you never see the term european american. In canada on forms I’m just black which is very odd when other races are attached to specific ethnicities and in person people who don’t know me call me african american?It makes no sense I don’t even live there!

maralondon
Guest

It’s down to the individual how they see themselves. Some of us feel a strong spiritual connection to our African Identity even though our Ancestors were removed from the Continent of Africa and wish to refer ourselves as African before anything else. I don’t see a problem with this. But I honestly don’t feel that this should be up for debate it’s just another us and them argument.

kate
Guest

Whatever, I’m still going to refer to black people of American descent as African-Americans. If I just call everyone black then how do I differentiate between someone of recent Igbo Nigerian descent and an African-American? It’s unfair and confusing for all parties involved.

Guest
Guest

How about you just ask a person what they’d like to be called or simply call them “American,” since people don’t go around calling White people “European Americans”?

Purple Sound
Guest

I’ve lived in the States for most of my life, but I will always refer to myself as being an Afro-Caribbean woman seeing as how I was born in Dominica and am still (and always will be) a citizen of that country.. *Kanye shrug* Different strokes for different folks.

Delia
Guest

?? I’m BLACK and I’m PROUD ??

Qwerty99
Guest

Until I find out my ancestry, I will continue to identify as Black.

Erika Jackson
Guest

I went to a conference recently and one of the panelists discussed how regional identity is important and describes the uniqueness of the individual and Black is our collective identity that holds us accountable for each other.

ARM
Guest
First of all don’t ever tell me what my race is whether you are black or white. I am black and proud if u would like to call yourself some colorblind bs based on an american government study than go right ahead. I agree with the fact that when the earth was created there was no such thing as “race”. But honey that is not how the world is. it is NOT a problem to mention my race and ethnicity. I REALLY could give less than a care how u identify (even tho frankly u sound confused and riddled with… Read more »
Ce “Privacy” Ce
Guest

Black is not a race, it is a colour.

ARM
Guest

That is your opinion. In the meantime I will be the “color” black and proud. Proud of both my race and my ethnicity

Tynesha Woolfork
Guest

While I get that many of us decedents of U.S. slaves can’t directly connect ourselves with an African country, there is no denying that we are of African decent. Immigrants from countries in Africa know which country they come from, so they would be called Kenyan-American, not African American, right? Regardless, I refuse to identify with that inaccurate descriptor that was meant to degrade us.

EmpressZombie
Guest

I think someone from Nigeria shouldn’t be an African American, they should be Nigerian American. An African American and a Nigerian American are both black but African Americans have a different history and culture and I don’t think it’s fair to put both in the same box as it wipes out the unique experience of African Americans.

BlueAngel1985
Guest

Based on my experience Africans don’t like Black people. When I have to choose I check Black, if its not an option, I choose other then write Black.
I’m Not African American. I’m Black.

Stephine Griffith
Guest

Hope people understand that not all Black people are negros.But negro is just one phenotype.Being African,Black and Negro is three different things.We are most diverse.

rachybaby
Guest

I’m black…

LBell
Guest
Wow, these comments are a trip. What are some of y’all scared of? You think identifying as something other than black, African, etc. will save you from white racism? Stop the madness, please. Not only do I remember when “African-American” became popular, I remember when it was no big deal for white people to call themselves Irish-American, Italian-American, Polish-American, etc. NOBODY had a problem with being a hyphenated American until “African-American” came along and then everyone was like “Why can’t you just be American?” I remember being at lunch with my co-workers (first corporate job, I was in my 20s,… Read more »
John from NY
Guest
“Not only do I remember when ‘African-American’ became popular, I remember when it was no big deal for white people to call themselves Irish-American, Italian-American, Polish-American, etc. NOBODY had a problem with being a hyphenated American until ‘African-American’ came along and then everyone was like ‘Why can’t you just be American?’” I agree with this paragraph. There was a time I didn’t like the term “African-American” because I prefer Americans not hyphenate ourselves. But if we are going to hyphenate, then we have to be fair, consistent and not hypocritical about it. If someone asks my ethnic background, I would… Read more »
ARM
Guest

And by reading your comments I can see that you are not connecting what you are saying to what this post is about. c: Maybe I am not one of you (who ever u r) I prefer to have my comments make sense. Peace be unto you too

Ce “Privacy” Ce
Guest

It is not an opinion, it is a fact! I am also educated to the fact that Americans spell the word “colour” as “color”. However, British people spell the same word as “colour”

Lola
Guest

You can and you can’t. You can’t choose where you were born. So your country of origin is fixed. You can’t choose your parents, so your heritage is fixed. You can change your color racial identity but others will still chose for you based upon the society standard decided upon.

KnottyNatural
Guest

I can choose to self identify as black or AA…it’s not that deep…

Lola
Guest

You were told to identify as black. It is not a “personal” choice. Now if you chose to identify as a dog, then that would be a personal choice. Never said it was deep.

Lola
Guest

You were the one that called me disingenuous for stating a fact. So, no, not for you to each their own because the facts clearly bothered you.

KnottyNatural
Guest

I called you disingenuous because you were…ah…never mind. Good day

Lola
Guest

Correct because you don’t know what you are talking about and cannot support your stringy argument.

KnottyNatural
Guest

Picture me arguing with an internet troll about how I self identify…bye felicia

Lola
Guest

I am a real person, unfortunately for you. Be open to thoughts different from your own. You just might grow!

trackback

[…] case for Black over African […]

JackpotJoy
Guest

You’re pathetically stupid black people have been all over this planet before slavery dummy! Keep believing the lies white people spoon feed you.

fromanotherplanet
Guest
Oh dear. Look at what we have here. A dumbass hotep fake deep type LOL. The indigenous people of the Caribbeans are the Tainos. There might have been black people around the world before slavery but except for large indigenous black populations in places in India and Australia, the blacks around the world were mainly traders, sailors and thus not in significant numbers. To claim that a sizable black population existed in the Caribbean before slavery is stupid and laughable. But I know you hotep types very well, always flaunting some fake deep made up black history and insulting people… Read more »
JackpotJoy
Guest

And you’re white I don’t give a damn what you cave dwellers think you’re becoming obsolete so you can go F yourselves!

ashmcsidhe
Guest

What? ASK someone what their preference is? Why, that’s Un-American! 😀 😀 😀

alezsu
Guest
Honestly, I wish we had a new word, and our own name. I’m tired of the newest evolution of slavery-era terms (“Negro” making a comeback? Really? Miss me with that.) that did nothing but dehumanize us and ignore our nuance, and I’m over the compromise terms (Afro-American, African-American) that stretch to cling to a distant land without invalidating our claim to this one. I’m a biologist, so I’m going to draw on what I’m familiar with here: in nature, we sometimes talk about where species ‘belong’ as a function of where they originated, where they migrated (or were forcibly introduced… Read more »
EmpressZombie
Guest

You may not but quite a lot of the world does and they will make it your problem.

Lola
Guest

I am quite aware of that, but I have to live with myself everyday and I don’t let that mess up my view of myself. Lots of folks should do that too.

Rael Marie
Guest

No “black” person is African, the continent was renamed after a white man named Scipio Africanus, “black” is a social construct and is what the Europeans called us to differentiate us from them. They have stolen our identity, All “black” people are not the same.Read your history people, they are all lieing to us.

BeastOfNoNation
Guest
I completely agree with you. As a Nigerian, if I moved from Canada to America and lived there long enough to be classified as an American, I would prefer to call myself a Nigerian-American as opposed to an African-American. We have different histories. In addition to that, a Nigerian-American would have a different experience than a Ghanaian-American and would want to be distinguished in that way as opposed to being grouped under one category of ‘African’. Africans have the privilege of knowing what specific country we’re from while African-Americans are a mix of several african nations. Therefore, African American is… Read more »
EGAS
Guest
I identify my self as a black American or person of color. My Irish Grandmother came to America in the late 1800’s and married a North African and lived in the amish country under her name . My Father’s came here not as a slave more than 400 years ago and owned land. They are on the books. also some were married with Native American tribes. So I also consider myself as in indigenous American but I am Not an African American. I don’t identified as an African American. Even when you have a person Like Jesse Jackson who decided… Read more »
Amber Wright
Guest

Africanus was an Italian general who won many battles in Africa. the suffix “-nus” means that his nickname translates to “from Africa” or “The African” because he established his reputation there, not that he named the continent. The word Africa really comes from the Egyptian term Afriu-ka meaning “the birth of the ka/ 2nd soul” or “birthplace, motherland”.

I agree, “black” is a construct that only exists in contrast to “white”, & that much of the written historical record of our people is a lie, but it’s OK to have a “motherland” and identify as Afrikan-American…at least I do.

Amber Wright
Guest

precisely.

laron williams
Guest

BLACK” AND “AFRICAN AMERICAN” are both offensive on my end,being as though those terms weren’t created until the 1960’s the correct term is Moorish american for any indigenous or immigrated thats DNA of north Akebu-Lan(Africa). So that word MOOR will educate every American about where and who they’re people are.

Don'tBSoNosey
Guest
I am an American of Native American and African descent. My grandparents told us of our Native American ancestry, yet nothing about African ancestry. Growing up being called Black and being part of black culture, then being called African American doesn’t feel right. My ancestors died in the wars to build this country and serve this country. We are AMERICANS, and this is our land. Jesse Jackson is a sellout for declaring Afro-Black Americans, African Americans, especially since racist America took great care into removing “African” culture, customs, names, and languages during slavery. Also, for Black Americans to be name… Read more »

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