Is There an American Out There?
by Gilles d'Aymery

October 25, 1996

In a small movie from Yaoundé, Cameroon, in West Africa, two actors exchange the following lines en français (in French):

- Les Noirs en Amérique... (The Blacks in America...)
- Y'a pas de Noirs en Amérique... (There are no Blacks in America...)
- Comment, y'a pas de Noirs en Amérique? (How's that, there are no Blacks in America?)
- Ben non, y'a que des africo-américains! (Well no, there are only African Americans!)

Now, these lines were pronounced by true African Africans (there are no Blacks there either, at least from our American perspective). I guess, PC has yet to reach Yaoundé. But then, thinking of it, it dawned upon me that we have erased all colors from our citizenry. No more Blacks but African Americans; no more café au lait (coffee with milk) people but Mexican Americans, Latinos, Asian Americans, Chinese Americans or Native Americans. Brown is an unwelcomed color, to say the least.

No, no, do not look for any possible inference that would raise the thought of an ugly head, the racist beast, in your mind. None. After all, we also have Irish Americans, Italian Americans, Polish Americans, and the like, in America; that is, for the most part, Caucasian (we do not say white) Americans. There is no inference here; no inference to the contrary and no contrary to the inference; only that we have a lot of qualified Americans in America; and that we go the extra mile to become colorblind. Colors have disappeared from the American landscape.

Martians, grasping with difficulty the subtleties of all these qualifiers, fail to perceive how come, in America, African Americans attend religious services on Sundays in "Black Churches". Sorry, this certainly was an unfair digression. What do Martians know anyway? And are there Martian Americans in America? Perhaps not, but the way it goes we must have over one hundred and fifty "qualifying adjective Americans"!

Add to these the American Gays and Lesbians, the insert-any-religion-you-like Americans, the Americans with disabilities, the Americans this and the Americans that (do we have pony tail Americans?) and through endless meandering a simple question emerges: Do American Americans exist in America?

I would like to know. Could someone who is an American with no qualifier before or after send me an e-mail with a picture. I should want to see the difference...

in color!

Published October 25, 1996
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