When you say Africa
Chudoba, hlad a Křováci?
Poverty, hunger and Bushmen?
Poverty and misery have accompanied Africa for centuries and are likely to continue to do so. But is it really only Africa's problem? Poor and war-torn countries are also found on other continents.
European countries are no better, and some Europeans are much worse off than people in Africa. Of course, poverty also has its differences. I understand that I probably can't compare the corridor of Africa with the European one.
While I was working for a non-profit company and raising money to support projects, I often got the answer: "I prefer to support our poor Czech children who do not have a snack." Seriously? Is it really the case that our Czech children need charitable support to have a snack or lunch at school? Yes, it is the reality of today's world. I fully understand and know that some families, and there are many of them, are on the brink of poverty and often far beyond it. Such projects, where they get food for their little ones or clothes for free, are an opportunity for them to ensure at least a little quality of life. Thanks to our social system, they can also, and certainly do, apply for support for where. I do not know to what extent this is achievable for socially disadvantaged families, but this possibility exists here, unlike in African countries.
So why do we think of poverty under the word Africa and the word poverty is associated with Africa?
We perceive and listen to one-sided information about Africa that the media serves us.
In our heads and subconscious we have only what we read, hear, see or want to see. But few of us will take the job to find out if there is anything more in that country. In addition to such famous and promoted slums, there are also beautiful and well-kept parts. Are there no modern buildings at the other end next to the dilapidated houses? If the field hospital from which the report is running is the only one, if somewhere in the city it is not new, modern and fully equipped with accredited doctors. Or whether the dirt road, on which the car with the film crew is driving, did not deviate from the main asphalt road, on which, wonder of the world, a pedestrian crossing or a functioning traffic light is usually indicated.
Africa is not only a poor village and bushmen in it, but also a city with all the conveniences of Europe. There are people living here who are graduates and often surpass Europeans in their intelligence and diligence.
Each coin has two sides, nothing is black or white. And it's often about the point of view, because the glass can be half empty or half full. Sometimes I feel that some people's misfortune brings others a sense of satisfaction. Some satisfaction over their own failure or dissatisfaction in life and only one side of the coin is enough for them.
I was doing a video interview recently, and the moderator asked me where I was right now because he didn't know if I was going to be in a hut or in the jungle. Someone was surprised to see me in the wedding photos in a classic white wedding dress and not in a palm leaf skirt around my waist.
I asked you on FB which three words will come to mind when you say Africa. Many of you know me and because of that, they know Africa through my eyes and it is not just hunger, misery and disease for them. Others live their African lives in different countries of Africa and so they have it connected with their ideal, which they present in the words: husband, love or happiness - Hana Abdullah Shidova. I do not want to deny that there is poverty in Africa, famine, misery and disease in some places. As I wrote, she was here, she is and will be, but I want to show you Africa from another angle. From the one that is not talked about much, which does not appear on TV, the media will not write about it and no one will shoot the documentary. I also want to show the other rich and luxurious side that few people know.
We present ourselves in the world with Charles Bridge, Prague Castle, Karlštejn, but there is no talk of Chánov and similar areas. There may be documents, but no one in the world knows them. Our current president is a "cunt here, a cunt there", but we are still an educated nation. The former president, in front of the cameras, completely selflessly and accidentally moved a foreign pen into his pocket, but we are still a country with low crime and high intelligence. We make feature films about murderers and cheaters and many other things incomprehensible to me, which border on stupidity. We are very educated, smart, skilled and mature, but the moment we see a mixed couple, we are not able to accept it. In the flight, we have a list where there are thousands against and we start to tell the stories of another friend who did not do well.
And we know what about Africa? What do we know about their current lives? Do we know about their modern cities, museums, cinemas, theaters or cultural monuments? Or do we only know Safari and Bushmen?
What bothers us?
Their skin color? So why do we go to the sea, fry in the sun, use self-tanning creams and go to the solarium?
Their peace and quiet? Do you know how long it takes them to get to work and how they get there? Why in the Czech Republic in the summer months, when the temperature rose above 30C, which is a weak average here, they warned us against staying outside?
I would like marriage to an African not to be considered considered sci-fi, but as completely normal as a marriage to another European. So that cultural diversity is not a thing to overcome when we don't even know if we will have to overcome something, but that it is part of the life that a relationship with a foreigner brings. After all, it is a great opportunity and opportunity to get to know other customs, a new country and maybe even learn something. We often see an obstacle even where it really isn't. Slovakia, Poland, Germany or Switzerland also have a different culture and no one talks about overcoming it, no one is surprised and shakes their head.
It would be nice if a European woman's life in Africa was not considered heroism or madness, but something completely natural, just like living in another country within Europe. Let's stop dealing with color, look for differences and reasons why not. Let's see a rich, cheerful, colorful Africa so that it does not remain an "underrated future of the world." As Alena Cicáková wrote in a post on FB: So that it is not just misery, heat, drought, desert but the sun, beautiful nature, elephants, black women, happiness and love.
Thanks to everyone who wrote me your words.
Luci Ligocká, Jarmila Mikulcová, Pavla Ponížilová, Alena Cicáková, Hana Abdullah Šidová