Africa Unite

Ray C, a Tanzanian songstress has a lovely track called Africa Unite in which she urges the young people to stop the war and continue to strive for unity.

Here is the situation in the United States, there seems to be a whole lot of very smart people who have come over the last fifty years to study and work and live in the land where there are abundant opportunities. I meet some here and there, not too many East Africans though, and the numbers of West African people in Philadelphia especially is well over critical mass. I ask myself, however, whether we would have had the same interactions if my classmates at home were from Niger and Cameroon. If we were connected to Nigeria by more than the fact that we are both former British colonies. If the song that Eric Wainaina sings called Joka were about a train winding across Africa and not just from Kisumu to Nairobi.

Moving into a multi-African society these last couple of years has enriched my life. I love to put a bit of Ghanaian Shito(spicy paste made from scratch) in my rice as much as I love to debate the merits and demerits of kwaito South African house music with colleagues from Zimbabwe and American friends who have lived in South Africa for any portion of time.

So far, the idea of cultural inclusion has entered and found a home in my mind. I no longer believe that there are that many differences between people. I see the race, class, gender and ethnicity debates as a part of life, but if people are bad it does not matter what they had for Sunday Dinner growing up, they will be bad. Take my view with a few of your own in mind and schedule your thoughts around the idea that because you are reading my blog, you are connected to Africa, America and the Internet( essentially nowhere and yet everywhere) at the same time.

Chew on those few words a little as I seek to tell you more about the world as I learn from and see it. Have a mellifluous Wednesday. Good day and stay well, wherever you are.


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