African Pride

Mimi nimuafrika (i am an African).

With my skin that is the exact colour of the brown soil i grew up on, my thicK lips, broad nose and the kink in my hair that i straighten out with corrosive chemicals, being african is an inexcapable fact.

Most times, being a child born of mama africa is a source of pride for me, but there are times its pretty hard. Watching CNN, BBC or Aljazeera, it is obvious that in the eyes of the rest of the world we are meant to be pitied. We are the continent of hunger, disease and constant chaos.

Even in my own eyes i fail to see any sign of hope. Our continent is being torn apart by the greedy hands of politicians and military juntas; yesterday Gen Kamara massacred hundreds of his own people so he can continue to stay in the presidential palace enjoying his champagne and his women. At around the same time, the honourable "gentleman" at the Ministry of Education managed to misplace over a billion shillings meant to school our children and the week before, about a thousand bags of maize meant to feed our starving million also disappeared. Does any other african feel as helpless as i do? how can we stand in the face of these people, with their money and A.K 47s and stop this madness before it destroys as all?

There are times i am tempted to do as the girls in the f.m stations do; adopt a posh american or british accent and distance myself completely from all things African. but then i look at...Mandela, the smiling face of Wangare Mathai and I remember. The sight of my parents, pushing through the wall of hardship and frustration to, achieve what they have achieved also serves to remind me, that being African may come with suffering but it also comes with strength to survive anything. then, my eyes open to the hope and prosperity that surrounds me-m pesa, graduation of medical students, a centre for HIV infected orphans, built by a woman who herself has nothing but her two hands- and i am proud again.

lwritten lwritten
18-21, F
Feb 21, 2010