African American is what many people call themselves or got called but are most not just American?

And you never hear someone say I am European American, but isn't it that many have roots in Europe?


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Most Helpful Girl

  • I'm so glad I'm not the only one confused by this. We don't call Asians Asian American or Hispanics Hispanic American, I'm part Cherokee but don't define myself as a native American, why would they not just want to be called Americans?

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    • This question just popped into my mind

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    • And i was just wondering why you would care one way or another what someone who has African roots would put "African" in front of American. Is that offensive up you? How? What about those identifying as "Native" American? That bother you, too? How? Sounds to me like you just want to have a gripe towards African Americans for any reason. I ask again... how does what any American identifies as personally affect you in any way whatsoever? You identify the way you want in this free country, right? Live and let live. Why do you care? Seems obvious to me why some blacks in America add "African" to American. Because obviously they have African lineage and roots, ancestry etc. and different people refer to those Americans of color different ways, too. Some do refer to Asians as Asian Americans especially if they don't know what specific Asian ethnicity they are.

    • Sounds more like you're the one offended here... I'm not saying I give a damn what people want to call their selves but I am curious why people choose to do so. I'm not saying it's wrong to be proud of any heritage, but if one wishes to be equal how can one achieve equality while asking for special treatment or for certain circumstances to exist? For example I can be called white and that's not offensive, but referring to someone as black is. Some people that are that dark in skin color aren't African, some may be Haitian or from the middle east so referring to them as African would be incorrect... ijs we're all American that's just how I see things, all are equal

What Girls Said 7

  • I don't really care what whites choose to call themselves. Yes I am American and I'm also African American.

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  • Some people actually do it to honour their roots. It's not always a bad thing unless you mean it to be so.

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  • Some people are starting to refer to themselves as European American.

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  • Nobody is just American. It's a big melting pot.

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    • So pretty much like most diverse countries then. If you are Born in a country, you take on that nationality you are just decended from somewhere else. So yes, if you are born in America you are just an American.

    • @igotapoosy By nationality yes

  • it became a popular term and everyone embraced it

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  • African American: someone who is more or less directly from Africa
    Black: typically brown skin (light dark or in-between) but mixed background (in my case Jamaican and cuban)
    Source: me and my family

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  • For place where people cry out equality it makes no sense to put on a label. If you are born in America you are American that's that. Do people also say Aisian American? European American? In England we dont say African British and neither would someone of African descent born here.

    Why segregate with a label if you want equality.

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What Guys Said 13

  • African American is used to refer to black people born in America because many people think calling them black is insensitive to their history.

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  • People with euro roots usually know what euro country their roots are from like Britain, Germany, Scotland, etc. Those descendants of slaves (who were brought here and stripped of their heritage and culture, nationality) don't really know what African country they or their slave ancestors came from. So if they chose to identify with their African roots they use the name of the continent since they don't know the country in which their roots lie. Often those with euro roots will identify as German American, Irish American, Italian American, etc. Asian do either if they chose. Ex: a Japanese American can identify as that or Asian American.

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  • Lots of misconceptions here, allow me to clear things up. Here is the *legitimate* reason we are referred as African-American: Black people in the 1980's wanted the change, and was spearheaded by Jesse Jackson.

    "In a December 1988 news conference at Chicago's Hyatt Regency O'Hare Hotel, where leaders of seventy-five Black groups met to discuss a new national Black agenda, Jesse Jackson announced that members of their race preferred to be called "African-American." The campaign he then led to replace the term "Black" met immediate success among African-American opinion makers and more gradual acceptance in the national press. Jackson's cultural offensive proposed an ethnic identity among Black Americans. It recalled the successful imposition of "Black" over "Negro" twenty years earlier and renewed other themes of the Black Power movement of the late 1960s."

    I personally don't like the term "African-American." The term "African" is not a race, it is a nationality. I am not from Africa. I am from America. A White person of dual African and American citizenship should be "African-American", not me. I prefer "Black-American." I am a descendant of the slaves, and no less of an American than anyone else.

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  • It's because black people in America used to be referred to by derogatory names meaning black and a politically correct term had to start being used when black people started to be recognised as equal to the rest of the population of the united States.

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  • It's because "European-American" is the default American. African Americans are indeed American though.

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  • They are Americans, this is the problem with this country, everybody is taught in school to be ashamed of America even though they are born here, and embrace their "roots" even though 70% of "African" Americans haven't even been to Africa and well over 70% of whites haven't been to any European country thier so called "ancestors" are from. You are where you are born or where you are a citizen of, not where you have never been.

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    • Will this ever change?

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    • I don't know where you went to school but I was NEVER "taught to be ashamed of America".

    • Florida public schools

  • It's olite way of saying " black guy"

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  • Actually the counter term would be Caucasian American, but i see your point.

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    • No. Actually that would be the "counter term" if they identified as Negro American. As Caucasoid is the anthropological name for "white" humans/race and Negroid is the black race. Caucasian and Negro are races. Europe and Africa are continents. To complete the lesson, Asia is a continent and the anthropological raced name for east and southeast Asians or "yellow" race is Mongoloid.

  • Well Europe's a big place. If I moved to the US I'd be Anglo-American, though nobody ever says that.

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  • Exactly. I've asked this question here before

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  • They may not call themselves "European American," but there are a good amount of people who call themselves things such as, "Irish American", "Italian American" etc. Unfortunately the term African American is still used thanks to slavery. Some black people don't know where their home country is, so that term is used.

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  • I've never heard my friends or people I know use African American, they all say black. Some of my friends say n****r but I understand your point.

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  • About 30% of the genes of people calling themselves 'black' or 'African' are European on average in the U. S.

    It's kind of odd really, if they ever do get reparations for slavery they will have to give money to themselves.

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