Africans and African Americans

Monday, November 16, 2009

Milton Allimadi, publisher of Black Star News, talks about some of the sources of conflict between New York's African immigrant and African American residents.


Milton Allimadi

Comments [15]

rom from NY

i am from cameroo, i get along with a lot of people, including blacks. maybe because they get my jokes. i never disrespedted a single black American(aa) i have been robbed by whites, latinos, arabs, africans, african americans, and don't get me started about a pigmee who pick-pocketed me when i was in cameron. so, i love and hate everybody equally

Jul. 29 2011 05:02 PM
Ali Abdul Perez from Hollis (Queens) N.Y.

Greetings, as someone who's from the Caribbean island of Cuba, I have lived in this country 50 years, and in that time span, growing-up [in the early 60's] yes, I had my share of "mis-understanding with African Americans (as they are rightly refer to, now), as they'd labeled me as "Spanish," but not as "black, colored or negro--back then, simply because, "I was not born here (USA), was not raised in the South or had family from there, didn't speak English & did not have an European surname (Irish, Scottish, British etc.,)." However, it wasn't until I began reading up on the history of the TransAtlantic slave trade, the condition--trials & tribulation--of African descendants of the Diaspora, that we realized, we shared something in common despite that they spoke English & I, spoke Spanish. It was only a language difference, both were European, and also lack of history information that we mis-understood, rather than understood.
And since coming into the epiphany of what I term, "my Africanness," I no longer adhere to the misnomer as an "Afro Latin/Latino, nor an Afro/black Hispanic. But rather, as an "African Caribbean, an Africancentric cultural Nationalist."
And in that process of my epiphany, yes, I have made and have had cordial understanding with other indigenous Africans, from Senegal, Ghana, Congo, Guinea. Unfortunately, not many Nigeria (although it has been mentioned they--Nigerian--carry or have an attitude towards other blacks as well from Africa, not just about African Americans, alone). I feel, oncce again, it is the media with it's lack and divisive information along the lack of sharing each other plight as Africans & African descendants of the Diaspaora.


Nov. 20 2009 10:44 PM
the truth! from bkny

My issue with Africans is that they never sent one canoe across the seas to rescue the lost/stolen peoples. What about that Afrikaans, not one CANOE!

Nov. 16 2009 12:30 PM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

Calls'em. You first sentence makes no sense. Are you saying that if a Korean-American gang beats up an exchange student because he's Vietnamese, it's not a hate crime "cause they're all Asian"?

You then fall into the the same generalizations about Black Americans yourself.

Nov. 16 2009 12:16 PM
Voter from Brooklyn

It is a class issues as the last caller said and it has to do with which Africans someone has contact.
I attended college and graduate school with African students and there weren’t any conflicts, but traveling down Canal Street or 28th Street in Manhattan, which is full of African peddlers (often with counterfeit merchandise) gives a completely different experience.
The Truth, maybe African’s views of African-Americans isn’t all that dissimilar to that of some Caribbean immigrant’s views of African-Americans…

Nov. 16 2009 12:05 PM
Calls'em As I Sees'em from Langley, VA

How can there be a "hate" crime between two Black people? Where does this nonsense end? If I call someone from West Virginia a “toothless hick clinging to their guns and religion” can that be a hate crime, too? Lol.

I think that recent African immigrants look down at "native" Blacks because they are very hard working while many who are here for generations are part of the Permanent Welfare State brought to you by your friends at the Democrat Party; whose unofficial motto is "keep'em poor and needy so they will vote for us to get some crumbs."

Can’t we all just get along?

Nov. 16 2009 12:03 PM
Dee from NYC

Great guest! This is an issue that is very important to discuss and bring out to the open since there is social tension between these two communities.

Thanks Brian

Nov. 16 2009 12:01 PM
Ken from BK

One question. If all I know about Africa is from a book or the media then how could I consider myself an African? I am of African decent but my personal experience is as a Black American.

My entier family for at least four generations was born in this country. I can't point back to an African country and say that is where I am from. So when I am asked where I am from I say America and that is it.

Nov. 16 2009 12:00 PM
peter from Brooklyn


This is is not a new problem. We hosted a Studnet friom the Cameroons in the early 60s who has remained a friend of the fmaily. I remember him telling us tha while he was attending a program at the old Bronx NYU campus at that time, he was surprised by how shunned he felt by African Americans both on campus and in the City at large.

Nov. 16 2009 11:59 AM
Paul I. Adujie from New York, New York

Your guest has a brilliant understanding of what the issues are... he has full grasps of what motivates the tension.

All immigrants need to be more cognizant of African American experience... there ought to be an understanding and some respect.

We had this debate at after The New York Times article regarding the Bronx incident.

I am glad that this gentleman is doing justice to the topic.

Thanks for hosting this guest and thanks for selecting this topic as well.

Most sincerely,
Paul I. Adujie
New York

Nov. 16 2009 11:58 AM
Elsie from Brooklyn

As someone who has taught African immigrants for many years now, I can confirm that they have absolutely no desire to associate themselves with Black Americans, and in fact, are often offended that Black Americans consider themselves African. My African students are extremely studious and polite and are horrified by the behavior of most Black Americans. I try to get my students to understand how hard life is for Black Americans, but considering how hard life in Africa is, my students aren't terribly interested. I do, however, wonder if the whole need for Black Americans to associate with Africa has done a disservice to the Black cause here, as most Americans would probably be more than happy to relegate Blacks Americans to Africa, rather than consider them full blooded Americans and thus deserving of equal opportunity and rights. WHile I understand why Black Americans would want to separate themselves from this country, in some ways, their false connection to Africa (as my students point out, most Black Americans know nothing about Africa) has absolved white America from having to include them into the mix. It has left Black Americans completely homeless, as white America is clearly happy to toss them off to Africa, but Africans want nothing to do with them. Very sad.

Nov. 16 2009 11:58 AM
Harris from Harlem

I am an African-American male in my mid 40s. About 20 years ago when I decided to join the Peace Corps and move to West Africa for 2.5 years, I was shocked when both my mother and grandmother begged me not to go. Not because it was too far from home and they would miss me but because they didn't want me to go to that "dark place" with disease, canniblism, death, ignorance and poor, poor very darked-skinned people. It was the first time that I was faced with the dislike (and real misunderstanding) by African-Americans to African.

P.S. I did go to West African for 2.5 years and had an enlightening and just wonderful experience.

Nov. 16 2009 11:57 AM
Ann from Houston, TX

I am African/American (mixed nationality) who spent time in Nigeria and other Africa counrties while growing up.
They get the same media exposure of African Americans that white American get and reach the same conclusions. I've heard africans (who have never been to the US) make the same sort of generalizations about black americans: they are lazy, violent, ect.

Nov. 16 2009 11:56 AM
paul from nyc

it's always the white man's fault!

Nov. 16 2009 11:50 AM
the truth! from bkny

From my understanding Africans do not accept African Americans as pure blood Africans...that is what I heard.

Nov. 16 2009 11:50 AM

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