So I’m listening to my favorite radio station KFI 640 AM yesterday in anticipation of the John and Ken show—yes I tuned in slightly early—and unfortunately caught the middle of a conversation between mid-day host Bill Carroll and weekend host Bryan Suits on the subject of Egypt.
Now I’d already been questioning the media’s repeat neglect or plain refusal to use the words Africa and African when reporting on the current uprising in Egypt that is demanding the immediate resignation of President Hosni Mubarak.
But after listening to these two whites guy jibber jabber back and forth about it, I am completely convinced now that on their map of the world, and apparently the maps in newsrooms across America, Northern Africa simply doesn’t exists and instead it shows the continent of the Arab Middle East.
When you can turn on your radio and hear someone explain with relative authority that the reason why President Mubarak hasn’t resigned is because he’s an Arab man being told what to do by a Black man and the only thing worse is being told what to do by a women—there’s a serious problem.
First, that Black man is the President of the United States of America. Black or not–he’s the President of the United States of America and while that may not mean much to the conservative whites here, I seriously doubt that President Mubarak looks at the President as being anything other than an American. Whether that’s a good thing or not, the jury is still out, but that comment just illustrates the continued racism and ignorance on behalf of whites.
Second, I don’t know all there is to know—yet—but I do know that Egypt is a part of Africa and that makes President Mubarak and all Egyptians African and that Black people in America via the slave trade and Middle Passage are also African. President Barack Obama even more so since his father was Kenyan. So wouldn’t that mean that both men are Black? I’m just saying.
The way I see it, we’ve already got enough American Blacks walking around here claiming they aren’t from Africa—like my grandfather who never misses the opportunity to point out when it comes to my locs that people in Africa don’t have a choice to wear their hair that way but you do—and Northern Africans in America distancing themselves from Black people by claiming to be anything but thanks to their slightly lighter shade of Black skin—to then have the mainstream media further aide in their misconception.
Black is Black and we all come from Africa so when it comes to Black Americans and those living on the continent of Africa it’s that much easier to trace our roots to the Motherland.
Egypt is a part of Africa and until the map of the world that I have says otherwise, while they may be Egyptians that also makes them Africans—not Middle Easterners.
And while I’m on the subject…Tunisia is also a part of Africa.
Is it asking too much for news media to have an accurate understanding of the countries and continents of the world when reporting the news?