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The Prevalent Negative Portrayal of Africa in the International Media Smirks of Economic Malice Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by Antony Felix O. Simbowo, Kenya Nov 10, 2005
Human Rights   Opinions


The ever sarcastic and turncoat portrayal of Africa in international media is eliciting protests and cries of foul play from many socially conscious global citizens across the two hemispheres. Many are questioning whether there is a miscreant attempt to rewind the racial slave trade committed against Africa a few centuries ago.

It has not been uncommon to hear nasty comments lampooning Africa and Africans on foreign print and electronic media. Making a mediocrity of the continent seems to be their fare. It is true that Africa has suffered from hunger, war, famine, drought, corruption and economic mismanagement between other real and imagined ‘calamities’. Many are Africans who have either died or had their dignity stripped by these labyrinths of problems to the mortification of foreign media.

The fact that these are the same groups and individuals who have been unceremoniously struggling to maintain the perceived status quo of Africa via their perpetuation of the hand-me-down culture, rather than availing long term solutions in the continent, further demonstrates the amount of misrepresentation and misinformation about Africa that exists at the global platform.

Many people in the western world still believe the mythical tales of Africa. They still believe the myths that Africans are living stone-age lifestyles in caves and trees and clad in leaves, barks and animal skins. These ideals occur despite clear representations to the west of the existence of cities and modern life in Africa. Mythically instigated evolutionary edicts of life having began in Africa, the “propensity to backwardness and tomfoolery” leading to the prevalent perceived state of affairs, continue to be purveyed in the media to the delight of their audience and the indignation of indigenous Africans.

Sadly, many indigenous Euro-Africans and Afro-Americans have joined in the charade of beleaguered condemnation of Africa. With conspiracy theorists talking about attempts to deface the continent, giving it an ogre like appearance before the mostly well-intentioned global audience, nothing can be ruled out in this vendetta. This coupled with the fact that investors are often being scared away from Africa as a result of persistent global images of instability and strife, the continent is in dire need of good publicity.

It is time that Africans disprove the existing ideals that exist. Africa is not inferior or the global insignificant other. Africa is not the white man’s or the world’s burden. It is time that the people of Africa vote out from power, political leeches and scoundrels. It is time to do away with those who persistently titillate resource mismanagement, pitch tents of violence and other negative exhibitions of tomfoolery and ideological mediocrity. Ethnocentrism, nepotism, sexism and other negative ‘isms’ need to be shut out of their socioeconomic life.

African rights activists should also avoid trying to appear as ‘black supremacists’ because all humanity is equal. They should start appearing as champions of a noble, just and equality directed cause. Let them be victors rather than victims over bigotry, pathological discrimination and racism. Its time for the new Africa to be born and for the African renaissance to be re-engineered.



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Antony Felix O. Simbowo

TakingITGlobal has never been more apt than it is now in providing a forum for expression. This is because the dynamic world has undeveloped challenges that pose a great problem to the growth and daily life of any youth in the global society. What with the incessant wars, poverty, HIV/AIDS, pornography, racism and several other vices creeping into the society in a culture best objectified as vicious gradualism.
Here is where writing comes in handy and the TakingITGlobal literati, glitterati and pundits alike have provided a vital conduit through which these vices, positive and negative dynamism can be expressed.
I am saddened for example, when a promising youth is reduced to a hopeless parasite by drugs. More saddening is when I see the mercilessness, the hopelessness, the dereliction, the lack of love that many children, youth and people are subjected to due to wars, poverty, pornography and such as other negativities which silently and slowly kill the spirit and will within humans! Having gone through such experiences myself, I pray that God gives me the massive ability to be able to help these people to the best of my ability with His guidance, provision and protection. I have often wondered whether the expression "do unto others what you would have them do unto you" is being subjected to relativity. These are the problems which need highlighting and what better forum is there than TakingITGlobal.
I am privileged to be part of this ideologically vimmed and gustoed community.
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