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I write today in the spirit of boldness adventuring quite a courageous move, daring to bunch the varying attitudes of one of the most diverse continent in the world into one blog post. With prejudice to none and no sense of victimising the African Attitude because I am a proud African. But I only hope to write of what I have observed through my life, born and bread in Africa and of my short life experience gathered basically through interaction, observation and association with my own people.
I write herein in this blog the story of An African Attitude (The Story of AAA):
  1. The story of AAA always begins as one of a communal living breeding the spirit and attitude of community. Values and virtues to the African is measured basically according to social status. Our African proverbs and wisdom protect this treasure with words like, “Although the egg of the hen may be for the owner, it ceases to be his/hers after it hatches, for it crows in the morning to wake the whole village up”. The African is naturally relational and people conscious.
  2. The story of AAA is also one of an Enterprising attitude. We have a continent where almost every person has an enterprise basically rooted in trade. Kiosk and small trades are of ancient and modern Africa. Commerce is done by almost every body  in African not as a product of chance but and attitude that strives for greatness and self-reliance.
  3. Amazingly the AAA story is full of optimism. The average African is overly an optimist. I do not intend to discuss the merit or demerit of these attitudes necessary but to purely lay bare my observation of the African hopefulness. Such an attitude is what gives room for faith and religion making the African primarily religious.
  4. Although there is a seemingly communal spirit there is also an overwhelming attitude of mistrust and disunity. Perhaps no one trust each other enough for a joint enterprise and a global force. The attitude of the African is perhaps to trust a stranger with its best than his fellow African. We sell out of ourselves, betray each other and back stab each other as a continental attitude.
  5. The story of AAA proceeds no further without noting that it is one of lack of confidence. We strangely confuse vices such as timidity and cowardice with virtues such as modesty and humility. The average African child will grow up been taught directly or indirectly or by any means possible to believe in the superiority of other races and his/her own inferiority.
  6. The AAA story gets sour to know WORK is considered PUNISHMENT and LAZINESS known for SMARTNESS. The cancer of corruption is hard fought but the truth is that it roots into an attitude of laziness to do the right thing in the right way and the perhaps the slothfulness to build tough skins enough to endure the hard way. No better description that laid back.
  7. Like children, the average African is easily content. We strife for barely little to go by, just enough to survive on. We get too focused on our own small world to hold and to treasure. We protect jealously standards and traditions that are way below mediocrity and market and sell such as our way of life. But who can blame someone for wanting too little?
There is certainly more to say, scenarios to understand, analysis to make and examples to give but I do not intend to dive into any of such. Every reader will have his/her own opinion and judgements of who the African is. Let me be clear to say emphatically that there are some African who share no lines with any of these attitudes as a result of a kind exposure, some personal mental choice or a kind personal commitments to other attitudes. Certainly so but these people are clearly outliers in the vast minority.
We do business, conduct our politics and live our lives guided by these attitude and sad as it may be we are mostly guided unknown to us. People who know these African Attitudes have either exploited the woes to their own advantage or manipulated the strength out of our hands. I finally end with an invitation for you to scrutinise your own attitude. Objectivity is the golden rule to enlightenment and I dare you to that illuminating path!
Yaw Sompa

Author Yaw Sompa

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