THERE IS SOMETHING WRONG WITH MY PEOPLE.
There is something very wrong with my people. My African people. Some of us, at the very least. I think I know what it is but I'm not quite sure it is all that is.
Last week, someone told a room full of bipartisan leaders while meeting the President of Norway that he didn't understand why people from Norway didn't come to America as immigrants but instead people from El Salvador, Haiti and Africa come to the country in droves. Someone is not smart and a committed liar so I wasn't shocked at the vulgar term he used to describe these countries and a continent. Also if I was getting free healthcare, free education and an extended parental leave among other goodies, I'd stay put too.
What I don't get is, 1. Why are my people defending this someone and backing him up and 2. Why are people trying so hard to "reclaim" this vulgar term and use it for commerce or jokes??
Someone who's country has been free for 250 plus years tells you that your country which is 60 years is a dump and you agree?? Do you know what his' was when it was 60 years old?? Did you know that people were kept as chattel then??
Compare your country at 60 or 70 years old today to what his was when it was 60 or 70 years old and you will see that you are much, much better. Definitely not a dump.
Could you also not give power these words said by someone by creating t-shirts, lists and what not. Not every term or insult needs to be reclaimed. Let it die a natural death but don't, please don't wear a shirt that reads in Times New Roman, bold, 48pts "I'M FROM A SHITHOLE COUNTRY".
Don't go posting pictures of luxury cars and condos trying to convince people who think you are subhuman that "hey, look. It's not that bad. And also fuck you very much". It is highly unnecessary to try to prove your humanity. Just exist and do the work you can.
Living in a developing country can be frustrating. Systems are either nonexistent or shabby. Extortion, corruption and mismanagement of state's assets are the order of the day. But this ain't new. Every developed country had to build it's systems from scratch.
When my mother put my sister and I on a plane bound for New York a few years ago, she knew we did not have much of a chance in Ghana. We didn't know anyone in the "right place". We were lower middle class and despite being in private schools all our lives, Accra did not have much to offer us. I remember her saying on the first day we got to New York that she just wanted us to have a fair chance and after a while we can do whatever we want because "the world will be yours". And she was right.
These days, nowhere seems out of reach for me. I dream big dreams and envision myself accomplishing everything I set out to. I have earned money, paid my taxes, gave back, traveled and bought things I couldn't have been able to do in this short while, if I was back in Ghana. That's what immigration is. And that's why someone's grandfather came to the America and got a job as a barber. Today, his grandson is the President of the free world.
Do you think the coal, rail and factory workers who built America and died from black lungs enjoyed their America?? Do you think those who built the shipping ports of Malaysia enjoyed their country as it was?? Look at the subpar conditions Chinese factory workers work under. Do you think they enjoy it? Absolutely not. They worked for pennies. Some of these workers in America were newly freed slaves, your ancestors, who had to scrape their nails for everything they had. But they still built because they wanted something better for the next generation. Today, these 3 countries are world super powers because their citizens built the country up.
It is frustrating to be born in the time and in a country where it is still developing it's systems. I get it. I am in it too. But instead of bashing and defending people who don't see you as an person worthy of much, concentrate on building your own. Frustration can be your guiding light but don't let it be the reason you throw yourself under the bus and fight against yourself.
"Haiti is a poor and deprived country". Whose fault is that?? Haiti, after being brutalized by mother nature, got allegedly robbed by the Red Cross and still has to pay colonial tax to France!!
"Mexicans are drug dealers". Whose fault is that?? If the West didn't have such a taste for drugs and a high demand for it, do you think that the violence in Mexico and some parts of South America will be what it is today? Making such generalized and blanket statements is also so annoying stupid because I am positive the average Mexican wants to survive and feed their families just like everyone else. To say millions of people are all drug peddlers is just overwhelmingly stupid.
Look at Libya. Whose fault was the invasion that took out Gaddafi?? I am not a fan of Gaddafi. He was not this hero people make him out to be but Libya was a haven for Africans seeking refuge. Look at it today. Black Africans being sold by other Africans into slavery. Whose fault is that exactly? Answer that.
I think I know what is wrong with my people. It is a cross between Stockholm syndrome and the after effects of colonization.