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Smokey Robinson on Why He Hates Being Called ‘African American’ [VIDEO]

Smokey Robinson

Smokey Robinson has made clear that he does not prefer to be called an “African American.

The Motown legend explained during a recent appearance on “The View,” that he prefers to call himself “Black” and “Black American.”

“I resent being called African American … I think that when you do that, you’re disclaiming all the things, all the contributions that Black people have made to America. I consider myself to be a Black American and I enjoy being called Black,” Robinson, 82, told the hosts. 

“Black has been so negativized as a color down throughout history, by those who wanted to negativize it. And so, it spilled over into the Black community and to the Black people. And even Black people back in the day calling each other Black was a sign for a fight.  So, I resent being called African American because Black people have contributed so much to the development of the United States of America.”

Hear more from Smokey about it via the clip below.

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Comment by James on April 30, 2022 at 6:57am
Well hers the truth morrocan people r the afri people look it up noninr whonpooks lokke kunta konte is African just as with all due respect smokey spuds stupid we aren't black that's u we have no standard not are we amerikkkan but we r humans that' alllah swt created first we just allow the children to dictate.smh
Comment by Kessel Davis on March 12, 2022 at 10:46am

I have been thinking about this subject for years. I hate the fact that other people think they have the right to label another group of people. Putting people into categories causes so many problems. Our history alone tells us we are not African Americans. White people know this but as usual they want to make things easy for themselves. I agree with Smokey Robinson wholeheartedly. Do yourself a favor and have your DNA checked?

Comment by Natalie on March 11, 2022 at 11:02am

@ Deborah I think you read my comment but you do not comprehend what I was trying to convey in my statement. I am personally against separatism in our community because it has caused so many problems amongst us and I was just stating the general attitude that comes about because of separatism I did not state that it was MY thoughts or feelings. Just like you I have been fortunate and traveled extensively to Europe, Africa ( including North Africa specifically Morocco and they do not consider themselves African but will correct you and say they are Moroccan) and Asia. What I can tell you is that there is no distinction abroad you can call yourself African American, African, Black American,Afro Latina does not matter to the "Other" we are all seen as the same a perfect example would be the Black Americans, Caribbeans and Africans who are trying to leave the Ukraine- all treated the same. Also this division is not exclusive to our community off hand I know it is done amongst Latinos, Hispanics and Spaniards and Italians as well however as an outsider the distinction is irrelevant. That is my point. Furthermore, you can respond to someone without making ignorant comments such as going back to where I came from. Start a conversation not conflict.

Comment by Ignar4Real on March 11, 2022 at 12:17am

Eugenics, though long debunked, is still part of the social construct. DNA science proves that we are human earthlings. Think logically and decipher the truth. Peace, always.

Comment by John Smith on March 10, 2022 at 11:40pm

She is right at her point..

Think of us for Business and Company Registration -

Comment by Yasmin on March 10, 2022 at 7:18pm
America is Egypt unlearn what you have learned.
Comment by Yasmin on March 10, 2022 at 7:17pm
No we did not why is that so hard for Black people to believe and understand we did not come from Africa man unlearn what you have learn how can you say we are Indigenous to the world and that we are the first people and then say we all came from Africa that's totally asinine. We are not the same people we're not even the same phenotype we build parts of Africa do your research and dig deep.
Comment by Yasmin on March 10, 2022 at 6:45pm
We never left Africa because we were never there Africa is not the Motherland America is.
Comment by Deborah Martin on March 10, 2022 at 6:26pm

As I descend from one Bahamian parent and one ADOS parent from the American South I love and respect both cultures and my African roots so I use both. Mr Ribinson has every right to acknowledge his FOUNDATIONAL roots HERE and there is plenty if truth to be revealed. My immigrant Mother came here and met Jim Crow. Some from The Bahamas were first advisors to Garvey until he came to NYC, SLAVE BUILT NYC, and Hubert Harrison of St Croix tried to advise him of the violence here and the social structure here. Garvey was not dragged out of his jail cell in Georgia like Black Americans because as a British Citizen the Brits told Americans to not treat them like they do the Black Americans. During WWII the U.S. released Black American men from a pseudo slave prison system (Read Slavery By Another Name, check the documentary) to fight for America and then, to fill in the labor here they brought over some Bahamians and Jamaicans in The Bahamas to work in North Carolina and the South and again told them 'do not treat these British citizens like you treat American Blacks'. These racists complied. Never heard of Bahamians in the south lynched but my southern side won't peep. Had to research the town and there are asterisks next to the lynching tales because they lynched a pregnant woman, and stamped the infant to death as it slipped out of her body. Since everyone hates Black women here we can't speak on the systematic, ritualistic  gang raping of Black Women here like Recy Taylor yet a Bahamian maid in Texas was able to successfully sue her White boss for sex assault attempt in the early 1950's when there were PARAMOUR Rights for White mem to rape and their White Women descend from Casual Killing Laws.

  Every single time Black Americans create a successful town it is DESTROYED and that includes New York City but if you're an immigrant you're invited in. 

  One of Bahamian descent, James Weldon Johnson, spoke about how any advances Black New Yorkers made was absolutely erased by overwhelming immigration. 

 To the Natalie person commenting that Black Americans think they are better I need for you to take a time machine ride into history and walk in the shoes of Black Americans watching their towns destroyed in their faces and there is nowhere to go because it is ILLEGAL TO LEAVE THE STATE OF NEW YORK who won't fully recognize that it was built on the energy of stolen Africans on stolen land and genocidally cleared of Natives who are paid Reparations for being part of the slave trade by none other than Obama himself. Obama did this in a Slave built White House via Presidential Executive Order meanwhile the ghosts of Slaves who defended the White House in 1814 looked on, being slapped in the face by newcomers disrespectful energy.

  Natalie, you need to carry your ungrateful hip back to where you come from b/c just as you are quite proud of where you originate, Black Born FOUNDATIONAL descendants of Slaves have a right to be just as proud. They could NEVER come to any other nation and say this one/that one is too proud and thinks they're better. 

  Go to the Shomburg and study some history in Slave built Harlem and gain some knowledge wisdom and understanding. Bkack Americans are nit accepted by others regardless of attitude. Most are not thinking about you but that's about to change. I know because I've lived overseas and every day, no matter how long into history of some 400 years there, I was cussed out by people not understanding Black Americans. My Mom was a former librarian whi filled in at the Shomburg. Before the old Minisink Townhouse it was my after school program. Lots of books, lots of interesting people. 

Was the same for my Southern side. There was a distance there partially because when they migrated North it was probably illegal. The things I knew made their eyes pop. 

 In my time as a kid we were Black and Proud and said it loud. Actually, an aunt of mine, Sally Cargill, was a person who was like a matchmaker of political and entertainment movers and shakers and James Brown was a favorite. He was well loved and received in The Bahamas and so when he said say it loud I'm Black and I'm proud, The Bahamas felt that. She passed before I was born.

 Natalie, you need to overstand that Balck Americans lost their lives HERE,for freedom and equality as it was ILLEGAL to be free HERE. WHI ARE YOU TO QUESTION HOW THEY SEE THEMSELVES?

   Natalie, you also disregard all the Black born Americans who love other cultures, love Africa and truly wish to advance the cause of unity within the Diaspora as it will actually be the biggest movement of unity on the planet and because of tribalism and nationalism, quite unprecedented. 

  Natalie, calm your nerves and butt out of heat America refuses to do and in showing the world their refusal to be fair and just ro those once deemed 3/5th's a person, suffering from Drapetomania meaning Slaves were suffering a mental condition for wanting to be free (yesss they tried it), she will perish from lack of knowledge, wisdom and understanding because her enemies have finessed how to use racism to divide and thus conquer. 

 To paraphrase beloved Malcolm, 'who told you to hate Black Americans? Let's Emancipate ourselves from mental slavery and mind our Black African business and see each other in a far better light.

 Mr Ribinson, I got ya back. 

Comment by Yasmin on March 10, 2022 at 6:02pm
Smokey is the first old school entertainer that I've heard that knows who is we are not Africans we are Indigenous people to this land and the whole world. We are the real Indians my grandmother always told me who she was and who I was and who my ancestors were she never once said her people were Africans and slaves on nobody's plantation.

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