I Thought Kenya was Part of Africa

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I received a truly enjoyable letter from a person in Kenya today, he or she told me.
Kenyans and all "Africans" a like do not think of themselves as "Africans"



I think of this a great example of what I feel is a social problem called:
"Status-cism"
I am having fun making a portmanteau by using "Social Status" and "Racism" to create the word.

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Panajachel, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala --- Monday, May 10, 2010
By Andy Graham of HoboTraveler.com

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The Letter
Help Center Message: Andy,
You are incredibly ethnocentric in your interpretation of Kenyan culture. One thing that you should have obviously noticed (if you were culturally perceptive) when you came here is that Kenyans and all "Africans" a like do not think of themselves as "Africans" in the sense of a unified homogeneous state. It's offensive to refer to a Kenyan by the continent. In the same I don't refer to Haitians, Canadians, Jamaicans and Mexicans e.t.c as North Americans.

It's also funny that you think that Kenyans don't have an entrepreneurial acumen, you visited rural areas populated by ethnic groups that have historically been economically marginalized. Most of them don't value entrepreneurship because they have never been exposed to it. And if you have not noticed, our economic system is not like your American system so don't make comparisons and judgments as if we share the same system. In Kenya, wealth is controlled by a select few elitists, families who were among the first to industrialize this country, the wealth is kept in these families and rarely does a substantial amount of wealth reach average Kenyans. I was fortunate enough to grow up in a well to do aristocratic family in Kenya that valued the art of entrepreneurship and I think it's important for other Kenyans to do so, but I'm foolish enough to assume that ALL kenyans should have an innate desire to make money. Your generalizations and stereotyp! es are hurtful and uncalled for. I'm glad that you took your bitter behind out of our country.

Category: Question for Andy
Name: Mbaluka Mutinda
EMail: Removed
Country: Kenya
Telephone:

Detected IP Address: 144.96.123.101



Conclusions
I guess he or she believe I would feel repulsion to be called a "North American." What this persons is saying between the lines is this,
"Do not group me or my country with countries I consider below me, we think we are special, therefore you are offending us."

Addendum:

Andy,
Please remove my email from you website, you posted it without my
consent and I am receiving unwanted emails from your readers. I'm
really disappointed in you but I can't say that I'm surprised. You
take pictures of natives without their permission, you publish private
emails of your readers without their permission and you disrespect the
cultures and the people that you visit. I apologize if my first email
came across a bit aggressive, I wrote it in anger and retaliation
because I felt like you went out of your way to insult my nation.

Peace and love


I Thought Kenya was Part of Africa

I was fortunate enough to grow up in a well to do aristocratic family in Kenya ........

What a Aristocrat from Kenya may look like http://tiny.cc/KenyanAristocrat

Does he need any help wiring his family fortune to my bank account ?


Asiabill

I came across the same attitudes with Americans referring to all East Asians as "Orientals" grouping together Chinese, Japanese, Koreans, Taiwanese when they each have their own prejuducial attitudes about each other and never think of themselves as a cohesive group sharing cultural traits. So there's nothing new about the complaint she is making about her strong preference to be referred to as Kenyan rather than African. On the other hand we as white Americans / foreigners also are referred to as Gaijin ( outsiders / possible enemies ), Gwailo ( foreign devil )and Ko jangey ( long nose ) by East Asians. Africans and the cultures which flourish in Africa differ in many ways so grouping individual residents of most of the countries of Africa would be the same as this Mbaluka Mutinda, preferring to be identified with their country or even smaller tribal group witin each country.


gerhard

I was actually surprised by the verbal eloquence of our Kenian person. It is obvious that the ariistocracy in that country can afford better education. It must be terrible to remain important in the face of your impending demise. All went well untill that Kenian person ran out of woords to end his letter in a proper manner. He had to revert back to insult. But I guess that is what the so-called kenian aristocrats do when words fail them. Just a pity you could not take the meager few dollars you spend there with you.
Africa is for Africans. Initialy, all these africans could do was sing and dance. Now they can insult too. We all realise that it stems from inferiority.


claptona

So , the person has a problem because she/he does not want to be lumped together with the rest of the people on the continent of Africa?
I always try to remember that all people think differently then me. It could be pride, it could be ego, if could be love of country that makes this person want to be attached to Kenya.
Judge if you want to be judged. I'll just let the person state that they are Kenyan and not African. No big deal to me how they want to be classified - as if that would make any difference at all in my life.
As for myself, I am just a person, who does not need a classification to feel OK.
Regards


Gadget

This Kenyan has a doomsday emotional status, there is no way to stop people from applying labels, espcially when they are accurate. Labeling people is normal, to try to tell people to stop being normal is his or her malady of thought.

I can and will write anything I think, and I will never stop, this is the essence of freedom and free will, and for sure he or she can write and I will again and again make fun of them, as they have the right to make fun of me if they can.


Gadget

Mbaluka Mutinda replies,

Andy,
Please remove my email from you website, you posted it without my
consent and I am receiving unwanted emails from your readers. I'm
really disappointed in you but I can't say that I'm surprised. You
take pictures of natives without their permission, you publish private
emails of your readers without their permission and you disrespect the
cultures and the people that you visit. I apologize if my first email
came across a bit aggressive, I wrote it in anger and retaliation
because I felt like you went out of your way to insult my nation.

Peace and love

Answer:
People need to think about this permission thing, when you open your mouth you give permission to the other person.


Mbaluka Mutinda replies,

Andy,
Please remove my email from you website, you posted it without my
consent and I am receiving unwanted emails from your readers

O ' Really Mr Mbaluka Muntinda..................

Your right to speak and made heard but it is NOT OK but no reply ?

Gimme ,gimme, gimme ,is all we hear..yes you will inherite the earth only because
most people are good and only have babies they can afford to raise without help from the goverment.

help from family was the norm and still is for many americans........

help from the goverment for NEW Americans is the new norm, so welcome Mr. Mbalulka
you will love it here.

Now just steal and cheat your way here by cheating your fellow Africans anyway you can. Claim you were tortured or even better claim you were a child soldier. How about that you were a slave ? Not politicaly correct but the only slaves today are in Africa.
Doesn't matter how you get here. It is how you make it worse for others so maybe oneday most can see through your tempid brew.

Please. link http://www.alphahousemusic.com/music/NIGER-PLEASE.jpg