When I Became Black


Growing up in African savanna grassland, a region south of the Sahara and north of the Limpopo, I always considered myself a tetrachromat. The words black or color blind had never crossed my mind.

Unfortunately, my artesian sunset brown complexion identity was only a short lived joy which was disreputed the very moment I set foot on ‘the land of the free because of the brave.’ Upon losing my complexion identity of two decades plus without my consent, I became subject to a rebrand where my artesian sunset brown complexion identity was replaced with; A BLACK MAN. 

For a moment, I thought that my flight of 24 hours had not only subjected me to a jet lag but had simultaneously turned me to a color blind. I was extremely eager to confirm my instantaneous complexion change at the nearest mirror encounter.

All the same, it didn’t take me long to know that the sudden change of my complexion identity was a tactic to subjugate my self-esteem and subsequently render me to an inferior mindset. Although I never urged my case out, in reference to my 6th grade art and craft knowledge, I was well informed that; black is not a color. A black object absorbs all the colors of the visible spectrum and reflects none of them to the eyes. With that in mind, my self-conviction on this matter could not allow anyone challenge my intellect. This led me to the decades old quote; ‘No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.’ Anne Elena Roosevelt.

They say; When in Rome, do as the Romans do.’ The fact that you can do what the Romans do doesn’t mean you  have to think how they think. Thinking is a self-imposed aspect that leads to a conscious decision. A person who controls your actions isn’t a great threat but anyone who controls your mind subjects you to slavery. 

After a period of 246 years of slavery, majority of the people never expected African Americans to ever regain their consciousness.

Just like in the bible in the book of Exdous 1:12; ‘But the more they were oppressed, the more they multiplied and spread; so the Egyptians came to dread the Israelites.’ So are the African American. It doesn’t matter how oppressed they are, God is still granting them favour amidst pain. 

When Pharaoh’s oppression against Israelites became futile, he ordered the murder of the firstborn boys but God saved them through the two Egyptian midwives. In a matter of contrast, slaves were likewise subjected to lynching and repatriation. 

It’s very unfortunate that, after a period of 135 years after the abolishment of slavery, some Caucasians still possess that 19th century retarded mentality where they think that African Americans are inferior human beings because of their complexion. 

On the entire planet earth, there only exist one race namely; THE HUMAN RACE. This is well recorded in the book of Genesis 5:2, ‘He created them male and female and blessed them. And he named them “Mankind” when they were created.’ 

The interpretation of the word MANKIND is; a man with kindness. In reference to the Lord’s prayer, (Matthew 6:9) we find that the entire human race hails from one ancestry namely; OUR FATHER who’s dwelling place is heaven.

The fact that some people think that they are superior to others is the cause of racism. When lynching and segregation were dehumanized, new tactics of superiority complex mindset were launched against African Americans. To this day and age, prejudice, racial profiling, police brutality leading to vast deaths of African Americans, injustice, mass incarceration and mass shootings of African Americans are a daily occurrence, all in the efforts to subjugate African Americans especially young African Americans men.

But why young African Americans men? The easiest way to obliterate a generation is through destroying the seed. Since these young African Americans men are the progenitor, they are being hunted down at every given moment in order to halt procreation among African Americans.

In the present day and age, there is a crystal-clear evidence that African Americans are in the list of endangered species. 

Today more than ever before, apart from the decades old structural and institutional racism which for years have subjected African Americans to poor housing, under funded education, injustice and mass incarceration among others, the suppression of their voting rights is alive and well.

Although this is a violation of the voting rights act of 1965 which was won through blood and sweat via the civil rights movement, the introduction of poll taxes and mandatory voter’s ID is out to deny African Americans their constitutional right to vote.

Voter suppression is a sure way of ensuring that the decisions that pertains to the plight of African Americans will continue to be made in their absentia.

This is my sincere plea to each and every African American who have attained the majority age to kindly ensure that you have registered to vote no matter how tedious the process is. Let’s make voting a collective responsibility like the Alabamians did during the 12th December 2017 senatorial elections.

Whether or not they fear the dominance of African Americans genes against their recessive ones, is a story of another day. Nonetheless, it’s extremely imperative to understand that; despite the lapse of time, the centuries old mindset that once perceived African Americans as inferior human beings to be counted as 3/5 of a man, is still alive and well in some lost minds. 

Kindly let’s speak out against any form of racism with a total conviction that; a day when we will be judged by the content of our character rather than the color of our skin, is nearer than ever before.

On my complexion worries, I am very close to believing my mirror. As deceitful as it might be, there have been consistently in my complexion reflections recently. Nonetheless, when all is said and done, it’s worth remembering that; ‘When the lives and rights of African Americans are at stake, there should be no silent witnesses.’

Posted by Moral Compass by Nelson Mwangi at 8:00 PM 

Share With


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here