BY RUNOKO RASHIDI
Family, it is my argument that Black people in general, both those at home and those abroad, are trained to be anti-African. We are taught to be ashamed of Africa. We are taught to deny Africa. This is a concerted effort that many of us buy into seemingly without thinking or realizing the impact of what we do. So some of us would say, “I am not an African and that Africa is named after a white man.” This is about the silliest thing one can say. Some of these very same people reject the name Africa but embrace the word Moor. Now we absolutely know that Moor is a European term. So how do you embrace one word that you argue is not indigenous to Africa while at the same time embracing a word that we are certain did not come from Africa. Go figure.
An extension of the anti-African line of thought is the position that we are not African at all but, rather, we are “Native American.” So everyday I wake up there is an image on my news feed of what purports to be “black” or dark-skinned “Native Americans.” I got one the other day that was actually a photo of Zulus in Southern Africa. But the person circulating this one had them labeled as “Native American.” A part of their argument is their belief that the Trans-Atlantic Slave never happened and “we were always here.” These people are apparently deniers and seem to be looking in their own way to separate themselves from the horrors and humiliation of enslavement. And thus “I am not an African and we did not come here via enslavement.”
The third anti-African position is that we don’t come from Africa at all and that we are scattered across the world today because of Pangaea. Pangaea refers to the super continent that once connected the world’s great land masses together. These people say that we never migrated from Africa but we are where we are because the world separated and broke apart and thus the scattering of the people. These people simply overlook the fact that this super continent broke apart tens of millions of years before the existence of modern humans. So Pangaea has absolutely no relevance to us of any kind. I repeat, no relevance of any kind.
And there are those that say that they are not African but they are the Asiatic Blackmen. I am not sure where this one comes from but science (you know, science), not Black science, not white science, but provable data, tells us that there is only one mother continent and that is the one now known as Africa. BTW, Africans were the first scientists and invented the concept of science. So science is not a white thing. Indeed, the African named Imhotep was the world’s first scientist. In other words, the people on the land mass now known as Asia, came from somewhere before they got to Asia and that somewhere is the land now known as Africa. So the Asiatic Blackman is actually a native of Africa.
So why do so many of us embrace these anti-African forms of identity? It is because of decades of anti-African propaganda that Africans themselves are the victims of and which some of us begin to embrace. And so instead of proud Africans many of us are prepared to enthusiastically embrace anything that is not African. And if that proves untenable we shout, as a last resort, “Those Africans sold us and I ain’t got nothing to do with Africa!” So we are happy to become Moors and Hebrew Israelites, Asiatic Blackmen, African-Americans, etc., etc., etc. And if it were not so tragic it would laughable.