Author Topic: Inferiority complex: Nigerians and their white counterparts  (Read 2729 times)


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Inferiority complex: Nigerians and their white counterparts
« on: August 04, 2008, 01:40:38 AM »
Inferiority complex: Nigerians and their white counterparts
Sabella Ogbobode Abidde

Pardon me for saying \"Blacks have low self-esteem.\" I am repeating a clichÈ, a truism that is evident in every Black enclave I have ever observed. But really, one of the biggest problems facing the Black man is his low self-esteem. I am speaking of a typical Black man and a typical Black leader. Both have a low sense of self. A Black man does not think much of himself. He does not consider himself worthy of anything. He has no regard for his family, his community and even his country. When one reflect on why Nigeria is the way it is, one has to conclude that low self-esteem is at the top or near the top of what ails the people and the country.

During President Obasanjo\'s first term in office, he genuflected; he bowed constantly and shakily before Western leaders. This was a war hero, a bona fide military general, a former head of government, a prospective UN Secretary General, a Chief a dozen times over; yet, he was a yes sir, yes ma, pardon me, forgive-me, no vex, nothing spoil kind of a leader. At home, he was a deity, the Asiwaju and the Alafin before whom everybody must bow and seek permission. But he was impotent abroad. Most Nigerian big-big-men are like that. Once they leave the shore of the country, they take on a different persona: looking dull and limpid. Boring, actually!

Truth be told, I take pleasure in watching some Nigerian big-men acting \"big\" at home, but then acting \"small\" in the US. Take Ministers and Governors for example. In fact, local government chairs, commissioners, and all types of advisers and special advisers all fall into the same group. In the wider pool, you will also find very many bankers, engineers, chiefs, lord of lords, pastors, and imams and all shades of ex-this and ex-that. In Nigeria, they are the rainmakers; but in the United States, the rain and snow fall harshly on them. In Nigeria, you can\'t even look some of them in the face; but in the US, they want to hug you - as though you are their drinking buddies.

The big-big-men aside, have you noticed how members of the armed forces and police officers, customs and immigration officers, and even security officers and any one with real or perceived power treat fellow Nigerians? They physically and mentally abuse Nigerians. They treat fellow human beings like rats and houseflies. But before White men, they act like kids, they seek favor. Before White men, they lose their spine and their balls. Before White men, they lose the colour of their skin, lose their senses. Before White men, they act like saints. The same Nigerians, who, in a heartbeat will beat up fellow Nigerians, will lie flat in the gutter for the White man to walk on.

There are a lot of Nigerians with useless power. No matter how mundane their office or power is - they derive orgasmic pleasure in frustrating fellow Nigerians. In recent Nigeria, most things are about power and money. Life and living revolves around brute force and money. It is one or the other; and much better if you have both since the latter can give you the former and vice versa. To have neither is to languish in Nigeria\'s bottomless pit. It is a shame, but for the most part, civility and grace is out. Benevolence and long terms rewards are out. Brotherliness seems to be a thing of the past. There are a few decent and righteous Nigerians left, though. Very few.

What is it about our culture and our society that makes the decent and the educated amongst us act foolish and godlike? What is it about power and public office that turns a higher-being into a brute, a beast? A Public Official visits the United States: he acts cool. He acts like a well-mannered human being. He is polite and gentle and chivalrous. He obeys the rules and regulations governing his host country. He smiles a lot, laughs a lot; but once back in Nigeria, he acts like a swine, a monster: thirsty for blood; ready to beat and dehumanize his underlings and willing to undo his colleagues and his superiors. Why? What\'s wrong?

In Lagos and Abuja and in all spots in between, you should see how Nigerian bureaucrats relate to White men. You should see how they relate to the Lebanese, the Germans, the Indians and the Chinese. They act like boy-boy, like Omo\'odo. You get the feeling these officials think of the Whites, especially the Americans and the British, as divine beings - beings they are never to say \"no\" to, never to offend, never to irritate. It is as if once they see a White man\'s face, they\'ve seen the face of God. They bow and obey and never complain. They pledge their loyalty. The same officials who disobey their God and their conscience never disobey a White man.

Now, if you think our officials and leaders behave like inferior beings before the White man, well, the behavior of the common man towards the Whites is even more repulsive. Some Nigerians lose their voices, lose their wind and lose their poise once they see a White face. They will do anything and say anything for the non-black skin - all in expectation of a dollar and cent. There are everyday Nigerians who will jump off cliffs, swim in shark-infested waters, chop off their nuts and even denounce their traditional deity if a White man tells them to do so. I beseech you to take the time to observe what goes on in our hotels and in government offices.

Except perhaps in the Scandinavians Embassies, Nigerians are treated like leprosy-infested people in most embassies (in Nigeria). They abuse and yell at us. They suspect our every move. They sometimes make us beg - on all fours - before granting us Visas. Not minding the fact that yearly, Nigerian students and businesses send roughly $550 million to the British economy, they still treat Nigerians like skunks. In contravention of their own laws and international conventions, Nigerians in European and Asian countries are violated on a daily basis. In essence, at home and abroad, Nigerians have become the world\'s bunching bag.

Almost fifty years after independence, the perceived superiority of the White man is still carved in our consciousness. Nigerians still worship the white skin. We helped in selling our people into slavery; and we certainly made it easy for colonization to take place. Today, we are selling ourselves and selling our country short. We give them cheap oil, cheap agricultural resources, cheap labor, and cheap everything. We make it easy for our country to be taken over, made it easy for others to lord over us. Heck, they\'ve even made prostitutes out of our university students. Our universities are now like brothels: dens for horny oil workers and other expatriates.

It has to be humiliating what we are going through as a nation: an incompetent, rapacious and thieving leadership lording over a fatalistic, gullible and poverty-stricken populace - both of whom are serving the interest of outside forces and their domestic agents.