Comedian-actress-TV host Whoppi Goldberg made an interesting comment about race during yesterday’s episode of “The View.” The ladies were discussing immigration policies when co-hostJoy Beharmade a joke about Americans fleeing the country if Donald Trump became president.
Whoopi, who’s no stranger to making headlines over controversial topics, chimed in with her perspective. And it appears she feels the same way as her co-host Raven Symone when it comes to labels. She said,
“This is my country. My mother, my grandmother, my great grand folks, we busted ass to be here. I’m sorry. I’m an American. I’m not an African American! I’m not a chick American. I’m an American!”
Of course Raven joined in wholeheartedly agreeing with Whoopi saying, “I am an American! I’ve been here too long to not just hold American.”
Whoopi continued, “Since the 1700s my people have been here. So, I’m an American alongside the Native Americans. That’s the bottom line.”
If you thought Whoopi was just “jumping on the bandwagon,” that’s not the case either. She has been feeling like this for a while now. In a book she published back in 1999 titled “Book,” she explains exactly why she’s NOT an African American and she hates when people uses that term to label her.
Below is an excerpt:
Call me an asshole, call me a blowhard, but don't call me an African American. Please. It divides us as a nation and as a people, and it kinda pisses me off. It diminishes everything I've accomplished and everything every other black person has accomplished on American soil. It means i'm not entitled to everything plain old regular Americans are entitled to.
Every time you put something in front of the word 'American', it strips it of it's meaning.The Bill of Rights is my Bill of Rights, same as anyone else's. It's my flag. It's my Constitution. It doesn't talk about SOME people. It talks about ALL people-black,white, orange, brown.You.Me.
People who come from other countries and become American citizens deserve everything this country has to offer, so how come I don't? Don't qualify my right to be here among you good people. Don't make it conditional. Who died and made you the fucking maitre d'? WHAT'S YOUR FAMILY NAME? When did your ancestors come to this country? What Language did they speak? How come you're more American than I am? Because it's easier for you to blend in? I'm sorry, but it's just not acceptable. Not anymore.
So, no, I am Not an African American. I'm not from Africa. I'm from New York. My roots run a whole lot deeper than most of the people who don't have anything in front of the word 'American'. I can trace my family tree back to the Mayflower. We may not have been on it, but we were under it, and that counts too. We're out of Florida, for the most part. We're Seminole Indians. We're a couple of Jews from Russia. We're black and white. There's even some Chinese running through my blood. They were here to build the railroad, and they to add my strange mix.
So...do you agree with Whoopi? Should "African Americans" drop the "African" and simply call themselves American? Or, as a black person, is calling yourself JUST an American a way of disowning your ethnicity? SPEAK ON IT!