Monday, 1 June 2009

My message to Michael

Cretins have opinions too

And so, an unrelated comment gets left on my blog on the Nigerian census by someone seeking some information about certain views people have of Nigerians.

A Michael with the nick name micky_metal left a comment and an email on my blog, this is my message to Michael.

His comment went thus:

Hi, I’m from Britain and I would like to get opinions from Nigerians on various aspects of racism prevalent in my country. I recently confronted a fellow Brit on a blog who was making offensive generalisations about Nigerians and Africans in general.

When I told him his comments are offensive, he said that if Nigerians were honest, they would agree with his assertions.

So I’d appreciate your feedback on the comments he made and tell me if you find his comments offensive. This is what he wrote:

“Nigerians are keen on fraud”

“Nigerians will continue begging for charity money whilst doing nothing to earn it. The amazing thing is that these people are actually proud of their inability to work, to think, or to get things to function properly”

“Nigerian cultural values make Nigerians likely to be homophobic”

Thanks, Michael.

Am I bothered?

Well, Michael, I would not waste my time responding to that kind of stuff; cretins, nonentities, idiots and ignorant people write blogs too.

However, just because people can publish outrageous, unfounded and stupid views does not mean they can suddenly be taken seriously and given the oxygen of polite debate.

In the email sent to my blog profile this was the introduction:

I'm a Brit who has grown up with Nigerians in school and at work - I chanced upon your blog after searching for Nigerian food recipes that I used to eat with at my friends.

And your views?

You probably have the opinions and research done already by yourself, not necessarily on opposing the supposedly offensive content of the assumedly racist blog but in your experiences with Nigerians, in school, at work and the social rapport that allows you to eat their in homes.

If at any time you noticed any of those traits, that is unfortunate; if however, you have been opportuned to meet Nigerians and they are generally good-natured, good humoured, considerate and understanding and there are many out of that 140 million population and many more wonderful Africans in the world, you have been blessed.

To debunk the last comment, homophobia in Africa really stems from fanatically adopting foreign religions rather than from our traditional cultural values, we have lived in peace with ourselves in many ways before funny ideas introduced the prejudices that seem to polarise our societies.

I’m a Brit too

At the risk of flogging a dead horse, your fellow Brit is probably beyond the realms of redeeming knowledge to change his interesting views and in closing, I happen to be both a Brit and a Nigerian, I have no problems with either of those people, or rather, my people.

I think we are equally nice and interesting people who are open to new experiences when we allow circumstances fostering new outlooks to thrive.

Sometimes, generalisations like that are the refuge of the unfulfilled and the bitter, they should not find succour in unnecessary propagation giving seriously undeserved importance to those with diminishing expectations for their lives who think castigating others gives them some superiority, frankly, you should be concerned if you were ever impressed.

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