I wish I could take credit for this but, obviously, I did not write it. I found it a while back and wanted to share it with you:
Confessions of an Honest Black American
My distant cousins in African live in abject poverty, are surrounded by political corruption and exist in a perennial state of health crisis due to AIDS and other endemic diseases.
Yet here am I — as black as they — enjoying the comfort of my modest American home, the owner of two automobiles, and access to the most advanced health care system ever known.
Why the difference?
It can be summed in simple observation: My African kin are the living legacy of our African heritage. I, on the other hand, am the beneficiary of Western European culture.
Granted, that observation smacks of racial betrayal. But it is also a matter of reality. White people, once free from the medieval madness of feudalism, applied themselves to industry and, having learned to bridal social injustice, blessed their cultures – and the rest of the world – with standards of living that would have been the envy of the greatest emperors of antiquity.
It was a matter of fate that my ancestors were snatched from their African village by slave traders. Am I glad they suffered the pain and indignities of slavery? Of course not. But I am fortunate. And I am grateful that they got on that boat!
There are some who call me a fool for ignoring the lingering injustice that our African American community endures. For every dollar earned by white families, they say, we earn 62 cents. Indeed, statistics are cold calculators that cannot be ignored. $31,969 was the medium income for black families in 2008. White families earned more — much more — $50,673!
Families living in Africa, however earned a mere $315.
I ask my black American friends: Where would you rather be? In America earning 62 percent compared to white Americans? Or in Africa, earning 1 percent compared to black Americans?
Do you not understand that our African cousins would need to work 100 years to earn what we earn in one year?
And do I dare mention the Reverend Jeremiah Wright? Shall I mention that, after a career of denouncing our white countrymen, Rev. Wright retired in a white community in a $1.6 million home? Did you know that the annual wages of 5,000 Africans would hardly cover the cost?
No, I am not betraying my race; I am stating my case. The descendants of American slaves are the blessed beneficiaries of Western culture. White people gave us flight, electricity and computers. It was their culture that reached the moon, discovered and unraveled the mysteries of DNA, and probed the depths of human anatomy. They attached contraptions on their buggies and, a generation later, drove the world along Interstate highways. They replaced famine with food so abundant that obesity has become our great health concern. They connected us with terminals for traveling through air at 500 miles per hour and terminals for traveling through cyberspace at the speed of light. We gave them the Motown sound. They gave us the technology to allow that sound to be recorded and heard around the world.
Lecture me on the evils of the white devils if you will. And, for the most part, I will agree. But I will do so here, in America, not Africa. And I will remind you that in America white people elect black leaders. In Africa black people depose white leaders. And for that, their cultures suffer.
How foolish we are in our blind racist rage to destroy the western culture that enriches every aspect of our lives. How foolish to amuses ourselves with grand delusions when, in reality, we are merely regressing to the pathetic lives of our ancient culture.
Western culture is rapidly eroding. When it is gone, where will we go? Back to Africa? Back to bathing our babies in cow urine? Back to subsistence living in grass huts? Back to the witch doctors and grotesque lip plates? Back to the bloated bellies of emaciated children? Back to tribal wars and brutal chieftains? Back to ignorance and high mortality? Do we really want to go back to that Africa?
Yes, I am grateful my ancestors got on that boat. And you should be grateful, too — while it lasts.