From Colored to being of Color
Though, we Africans, are a people of known origins, we are a misnamed people. In the United States and the United kingdom, Afrikan/Black/Original people have been referred to as “colored/coloured”. Other terms that have been used were “negro, nigger, afro-, negroid, kaffir”. The term “colored” has a negative connotation, because of the unwanted associations with Jim Crow Laws + legal segregation. Colored people, were different from white people, who claim that they are the majority. It seems all over the world, people of European/Asian descent believe they are the majority. In actuality, Eurasians only make up less than 5% of the entire world population, of 7,275,896,900 (as of 2014 U.S. Census Bureau).
However, there is a new love of the term “color”. Now instead of being called colored people, we gladly accept the title of being called POC or “person of color”, which is nothing but semantics. The issue with the grouping of “POC” is adding everybody who is not white, into a group. In a so-called post-racial world, we still see things as “white or Not white” insinuating that white is default, when is it nothing more than a minority, from a global perspective. Whether it is video games or language settings, the default of everything has been Anglo-Eurasian. ￼ But still, we see no issue of calling ourselves colored, when in the visible spectrum of light, Black is the absence of color, or the absorption of all color, where white is the reflection of color. ￼ Historically, Black has been associated with negativity. Whether it was the Bubonic Plague/Black Death (ironically a disease due to the unsanitary conditions of Europeans), Black Magik (magic for evil purposes), Black/Dark Comedy (taboo, morbid humour), Europeans have always found a way to steer us away from calling ourselves what we are. Even a small group of Africans who associated themselves with Arab traditions, the Moors, dismiss all claims of being “Black” or “Africans”. However, ancient civilizations in Africans, have always called themselves Black. Ethiopia, is the English transliteration of a Greek word Aithiopia, which means “charred or burnt”. Kemet, referred to themselves as the “Black Land”, Sudan, an Arabic term which means “Land of Blacks”. Unfortunately, we have been conditioned to believe that calling ourselves “Black” or “Afrikan” is a misnomer, and instead should be colored.
And yet, we have forgotten the thousands of lynchings and burnings of “colored” people, the “colored only” entrances which were back doors, the “colored only” sections of buses, restaurants, and toiletries. And now, the same people who have called us nigger, negro, colored, are now unaccepting of the term “people of color”, because they are not included. ￼ As we ended the term “colored”, we should do the same for the phrase “of color”. Be proud of being Black, without having to be grouped with other non-whites. We are our own people and entity.