Monday, November 14, 2005

What's wrong with black and white?

I mentioned about a month ago that I am "not a fan of the term "African-American." When we talk race, we're talking skin color. Period. And you end up saying things that just don't make sense, because not all blacks are from Africa OR America, and not all Africans are black. Well, we've got another great example on CNN this weekend. CNN anchor Carol Lin was giving a report on the riots in France, and this is part of what she reported:
Hard to say because it’s been 11 days since two African-American teenagers were killed, electrocuted during a police chase, which prompted all of this.

The two "African-American" teenagers were French citizens of Tunisian ancestry. They were not American, not in any sense of the word.

I remember, years ago, hearing a story about a newspaper whose style book dictated replacing the word "black" with "African-American," the end result of which was a headline story about "African-Americans rioting in Johannesburg." Probably apocryphal, but not hard to believe...



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